Rochester, NY, July 29, 2019 – Wegmans Food Markets is now offering families who have young children with mobility restrictions a safer, easier way to grocery shop together with the introduction of a specially adapted cart, the Firefly GoTo Shop. The carts are designed by Leckey, a globally recognized manufacturer of mobility equipment for children and young people, and manufactured together with US cart supplier, Peggs.
Known for providing an exceptional and inclusive customer experience, Wegmans, following a two-store pilot, is the first retailer in the United States to offer the cart in all its stores.
“At Wegmans, we are committed to providing incredible customer service to all our shoppers, and we’re always looking for better ways to make our stores accessible to everyone,” said Wegmans Community Relations Manager Linda Lovejoy. “When Liza Rudroff, a customer at our Alberta Drive store in Buffalo, New York, brought this cart to our attention and shared her family’s need, we recognized that there are more families, throughout all our market areas, who would benefit from the availability of this cart at our stores.”
Rudroff’s daughter, Sydney, has a neurological movement disorder that prevents her from standing or walking. Because Sydney is too big to sit in the front of a regular shopping cart, and too small for other special needs carts, Rudroff found herself planning shopping trips for when a family member could stay with Sydney. When Rudroff learned the GoTo Shop was available in the United States, she approached the Alberta Drive Wegmans management team to see if they would consider offering the cart. Within two months, Wegmans began piloting the GoTo Shop carts at its Alberta Drive and Pittsford, New York, stores.
The GoTo Shop is designed for children ages 2 – 8 (or up to 77 pounds) who require extra postural and head support. The cart features an open front allowing users to easily place their child in the seat, adjustable head and lateral supports, and a fully adjustable, cushioned five-point harness.
“Now, I can comfortably and safely take Syd grocery shopping with me, whether it’s a planned trip or a last-minute decision to stop on the way home from school” said Rudroff. “Going to the store immerses Syd in the community and gives her the opportunity to engage with others, explore the sights and sounds, and learn how to shop. It’s a great life experience for her, that is now effortless and worry-free for me.”
“We are incredibly excited to partner with Wegmans on our journey to make shopping trips more inclusive for all families around the world,” said Firefly managing director Jayne Leckey. “For us it’s not just what we make, it’s what we make possible, and to have a forward-thinking company like Wegmans believe in our campaign is fantastic. We are very proud to call them a partner.
Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. is a 99-store supermarket chain with stores in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland, and Massachusetts. The family company, recognized as an industry leader and innovator, celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2016. Wegmans has been named one of the ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’ by FORTUNE magazine for 22 consecutive years, ranking #3 in 2019. The company was also ranked #1 for corporate reputation among the 100 most visible companies, according to the 2019 Harris Poll Reputation Quotient® study.
Firefly products are designed and manufactured by Leckey in Northern Ireland employing 200 people. Established in 1983, Leckey is a globally recognized pioneer in the research, design and development of clinically focussed, posturally supportive products. The Firefly range of products are inspired by special needs family participation. The Firefly GoTo Shop is already in use at major supermarkets across the UK and Ireland. The carts are manufactured in partnership with US cart manufacturer Peggs Inc.