ORANGE is “bucking the trend” by having two IGA supermarkets and two Woolworths supermarkets in a city of 38,000 people according to Federal member for Calare John Cobb.
He made the comments after he and member for Orange Andrew Gee officially opened the Summer Centre Supa IGA supermarket on Saturday.
Mr Cobb said he believed the store would be able to succeed despite the competition from other supermarkets because owner Ian Ashcroft was “not a babe in the woods” and would not have invested in a city that could not cope with the competition.
“I believe myself that the fact they are a family franchise they will do well, there is a little bit of the sense from people that Coles and Woolworths have got a little bit big,” he said.
Mr Gee said the decision to open a second IGA in Orange was testament to the strong Orange economy and that there was room enough for everybody in the city.
“[Ian Ashcroft] wouldn’t have opened here if he didn’t know it would succeed,” he said.
“It’s a vote of confidence for the future of Orange.”
The Sale Street entrance is a bonus, Mr Cobb said as a customer who was loyal to the centre before the construction was undertaken as it was a convenient location between work and home.
Both politicians agreed that the construction had lifted the profile of the end of Summer Street that had often been forgotten in the past.
Moments before Mr Cobb cut the ribbon to open the store, the shutters slowly wound up to reveal bright lights, masses of colour and staff in maroon jumpers everywhere with huge smiles on their faces.
One woman who was present for the opening said “it is just beautiful , I hope it stays that way”.