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Capital Business
Posted at 02:00 PM ET, 01/15/2013

Empty shelves at some Magruder’s Supermarkets prompt questions

ALEXANDRIA, VA- JANUARY 8: The Magruder's store at 4604 Kenmore Avenue in Alexandria, VA on Tuesday, January 8, 2013. (Photo by Tracy A. Woodward/The Washington Post) (Tracy A. Woodward - THE WASHINGTON POST)
Several shoppers of the locally owned chain of Magruder’s Supermarkets have called or written in recent days to say that some shelves at their local stores have become noticeably bare.

The Rockville-based chain, which bills itself as “A Washington Landmark Since 1875,” has stores in Alexandria, Gaithersburg, Rockville, Vienna, Chevy Chase neighborhood of the District.

What’s with the empty shelves?

Reached briefly last week, Gary Bortnick, at the Magruder’s corporate offices, said the chain is open for business.

“There’s been rumors for a gazillion years on us closing. We’ve got absolutely no plans to close any of the stores,” he said.

He added that the company was considering some other options for the future, including merchandising opportunities.

Calls last week seeking managers at some of the stores did not shed any more light.

“I don’t know what to tell you. You need to talk to the corporate office,” said a woman who identified herself as manager at the Alexandria store.

An employee in another store who declined to give his name when asked whether the store was closing said the chain’s corporate leadership “may be figuring out a final date now which is why I can’t talk to you.”

Subsequent messages left with Bortnick and other members of the company’s management were not returned.

Follow Jonathan O’Connell on Twitter: @oconnellpostbiz

By  |  02:00 PM ET, 01/15/2013

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