Customers heading to Tops Friendly Markets for a magazine have likely turned up empty-handed in recent weeks as some Western New York locations struggle to maintain their magazine stocks while the supermarket chain searches for a new distributor.
The disruption in service, which has left the magazine shelves at several area Tops stores virtually bare, started when Source Interlink Distribution, the nation’s second-largest distribution company that supplied retailers with products from publishers like Time Inc., filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June.
The company ceased delivery to Tops and other retailers shortly afterward, leaving them scrambling to find a replacement.
Tops is using a temporary supplier in the interim until a permanent source is identified, company spokeswoman Katie McKenna said.
It hopes that the stores affected will be fully stocked by July 28 with “a normal, weekly assortment and availability of magazines,” McKenna said.