After reading all these comments, I was just thinking about the giant theme park grocery store in Cincinnati called "Jungle Jim's" and wonder how it was doing? I last visited it around 2003 and was basically a large shopping mall disguised as a theme park.
Anyone from Cinci that could fill me in? Are they declining as well?
I found this. I could not help but look into it via being in the food industry. It was fun to watch because the people I work for still keep the family vibe, and I loved the way the video showed the guy working the front end of the stores. Our customers can be surprised to find the the person working the front end or answering a question is one of the owners.
My feeling is some of the small independents survive the giants because of the culture of the store just as much as the need for business and operations prowess. Grocery is honest hard work and in great stores you see equal parts love given to customers and staff.