Tag Archives: supermarket

Pol: Inspect, grade food markets too


| brennison@queenscourier.com


A local politician wants to make sure supermarkets are making the grade — 24 hours a day.

Senator Tony Avella has proposed that the city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene be given jurisdiction over food markets in the five boroughs, an authority only the state’s Department of Agriculture & Markets currently has.

Currently, the state’s agriculture department conducts inspections of food stores, from smaller retailers to supermarkets. Inspectors from the Department of Agriculture & Markets routinely examine sanitary conditions, food preparation procedures and storage conditions at food markets.

“I mean part of the problem is that the city has no jurisdiction over supermarkets. I mean obviously the state doesn’t have the proper number of inspectors,” Avella said. “When there is a complaint, there is the issue of a timely inspection.”

There are approximately 115 food inspectors who have jurisdiction over more than 28,000 markets.

Avella brought up the example of the Hillside Avenue Halal Market that had received numerous complaints. One of the complaints was that meat and poultry was being delivered in an unrefrigerated truck, but since the deliveries came at night, there was no way for the Department of Agriculture to find out — no inspections after 5 p.m.

“[The city] makes night inspections, and they can have quicker response time. Why not have the city have some jurisdictions,” Avella asked.

Under the proposal, the city and state would have concurrent jurisdiction.

Avella also said giving the city jurisdiction would stop restaurants from classifying themselves as food markets to evade the city health inspectors.

Currently, the city’s health department inspects and hands out letter grades to restaurants. Avella said expanding the letter grades to markets may be something that is discussed in meetings with the city.

“I think it’s a real consumer issue. This will make sure [markets] are following the code,” Avella said. “There is the opportunity for more routine inspections to make sure it is safer for everyone. I think it’s a no brainer”

Fairway supermarket opens in Queens


| brennison@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/PHOTOS

Foul weather did not dampen the excitement on the lines of eager customers awaiting the grand opening of the long-anticipated Fairway Market.

“It’s been so long since we had a nice, big [food] store like this,” said Doris Mayne of Douglaston.  “It’s about time.”

Customers lined up over an hour before the doors first opened, anxiously awaiting the store that has been over two years in the making.

“I love Fairway, I used to have to travel to the one in Long Island,” said Martin Hoffman, one of the first customers to enter the 56,000-square-foot market.  “Their aisles are wide and their selection is superb.”

Fairway – located at 242-02 61st Avenue in the Douglaston Plaza Shopping Center’s Lower Level – held its ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday, November 16 with politicians, residents and Fairway officials on hand.

“We’re really delighted for the people of eastern Queens,” said Councilmember Mark Weprin.  “It really is a very big anchor in this community.”

The Douglaston Fairway is the first to open within Queens and is the largest of the nine in the city.

“The Douglaston area is, what I call, a food desert,” said Howie Glickberg, Fairway’s third-generation CEO. “For whatever reason, there are just not a lot of food stores in that area. We are really going to shake everybody up.”

The grand opening has been a process long in the making after some zoning issues and a full renovation and expansion of the Waldbaum’s building.

While local residents have been waiting for a market in the area, this is not just an average food store.

The aisles are filled floor to ceiling with not only typical supermarket fare, but specialty, imported, organic and exotic items.

The store will include a full kosher bakery featuring artisanal breads and New York City-style bagels made daily, a wide array of organic produce, a seafood department, butcher and cheese counter featuring over 600 cheeses.

Also featured in the market is a café that can seat 60 customers and will offer sushi, salad, yogurt and dozens of hot foods prepared fresh on premise that many customers eagerly sampled.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg was on hand for the ceremony and spoke about the economic boost the store will provide.

“This is exactly what New Yorkers are looking for, jobs in these tough economic times,” Bloomberg said.

Fairway has hired more than 450 employees in the store that covers more than one acre of land.

Bloomberg also noted that Fairway has made a commitment to employ veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

“I’m not supposed to give plugs for one company over another, but you could do a lot worse than buying all your stuff here,” Bloomberg said, who also has a Fairway coffee named after him, Gotham Blend, which Glickberg described as all business with spicy undertones.

Fairway is open daily from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m.

– Additional Reporting By Bob Doda

Queens’ Morning Roundup – 11/17/2011: Top fund-raiser for Comptroller Liu charged with funneling sham donations


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Activist Patricia Dolan killed crossing Hillside Avenue

Patricia Dolan, longtime Community Board 8 member, president of the Queens Civic Congress, Kew Gardens Hills Civic Association and the founder of the Flushing Meadows-Corona Park Conservancy, was struck and killed as she crossed Hillside Avenue on Tuesday, November 15. Police say Dolan, 72, was crossing the thoroughfare near 198th Street — on her way to a CB 8 Transportation Committee meeting — when she was struck by a 1998 Nissan sedan driven by an unidentified 57-year-old woman.  EMS responded to the scene and took Dolan to Jamaica Hospital where she was pronounced dead. Read More: Queens Courier

David Wright expects to stick around with NY Mets for 2012 MLB season

David Wright joined Ike Davis and Lucas Duda for a press conference to announce some of the Mets’ plans for their landmark season, which includes the return of Banner Day and, in April, a Tom Seaver bobblehead day. Davis and Duda both pronounced themselves fit from the injuries that affected them last season — Davis’ ankle is “full-go right now” and Duda is over his concussion. Read More: Daily News

Fairway supermarket opens in Douglaston

Foul weather did not dampen the excitement on the lines of eager customers awaiting the grand opening of the long-anticipated Fairway Market. “It’s been so long since we had a nice, big [food] store like this,” said Doris Mayne of Douglaston.  “It’s about time.” Customers lined up over an hour before the doors first opened, anxiously awaiting the store that has been over two years in the making. Read More: Queens Courier

Politicians Push For Expansion Of Good Samaritan Law At Queens Anti-Crime Rally

Elected officials in Queens are calling on residents to come together to stop crime. In the wake of an attack on a young girl and several robberies, local politicians attended an anti-crime rally Wednesday in Astoria. They spoke about legislation, including expanding a Good Samaritan law to businesses. Read More: NY1

Romanian duo sent to prison for thefts using doctored Dunkin’ Donuts gift cards

Two Romanians in the U.S. on journalism visas were tossed in prison for up to three years Wednesday for starring in a true-crime story of theft by way of doctored Dunkin’ Donuts gift cards. Daniel Gheorghe and Ionel Cristian Popa, both 33, were convicted of re-encoding the gift cards with stolen bank account information and then using them to withdraw almost $18,000 from a JPMorgan Chase bank in Queens. Read More: Daily News

Noise abatement equipment muffles ear-splitting MTA fan in Hunters Point 

Silence is golden for noise-addled residents of Hunters Point. Noise abatement equipment recently placed on a large fan that exhausts fumes from a nearby subway tunnel has muffled its ear-splitting racket, according to state Sen. Michael Gianaris. Read More: Queens Courier

Top fund-raiser for Comptroller Liu charged with funneling sham donations

A top fund-raiser for Comptroller John Liu was busted by the feds yesterday for allegedly providing the city’s chief fiscal officer with thousands of dollars in sham donations in order to evade campaign-finance laws. The charges against Xing Wu “Oliver” Pan yesterday delivered a devastating blow to Liu’s ambitions of running for mayor in 2013, and have raised questions about his role as the city’s top fiscal officer. Read More: New York Post

Drugs hidden in innocent flier’s luggage

A former Yankee Stadium security guard lost his job, went through a humiliating full-body strip search and faced the threat of spending the rest of his life in jail — all because someone planted two bricks of cocaine in his luggage. Roger Levans, 56, of South Ozone Park, Queens, said the cascade of horrors began Dec. 29, 2010, after he got off his Delta Air Lines flight from Guyana, where he’d been visiting family for Christmas — and didn’t end until March, when the US Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn finally dropped its bombshell drug charges. Read More: New York Post