Alfonso Cano, who was produce director for Anaheim, Calif.-based Northgate Gonzalez Markets, has taken a job with Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons as director of produce and floral for the company’s Lucky division.
“I’ve come full circle,” he said. “I started my career at Albertsons in Laguna Beach in 1991 and now I’m back. I’m pretty excited.”
Cano said he will be based at the company’s Boise location, and started in mid-February. His last day at Northgate Gonzalez was Feb. 2, he said. He spent 11 years at the Anaheim-based retailer where he was known for an innovative approach to merchandising and promotions.
In his Packer 25 interview in 2016, Cano said his career ambitions have always been high.
“I told myself if I was going to stay in this business, I don’t want to stay at the store level,” he said. “I want to be a game changer, do different things, be creative and innovative – and that’s what’s made me successful.”
Lucky, a historic California retail banner, has been the subject of legal disputes between several retailers. Albertsons maintains it owns the trademark, and was backed by courts in 2007 after a lengthy battle with Berkeley, Calif.-based Grocery Outlet.
The bulk of stores under Lucky banner are operated by Modesto, Calif.-based Save Mart Companies, after the company acquired Albertsons’ Northern California division in 2006.
Requests for comment from Albertsons about the company’s plans for the Lucky banner were not returned.