Acmestyle,wondering if this ad is circa 50's or 60's... it's funny that chains like Acme and A&P were so gigantic back then, they were in the manufacturing business for bread, coffee and a variety of other staples for that time, and now they can't afford to keep stores open.The Jane Parker line of baked goods @ A&P was probably the competitor for Acme's bread and baked goods although I'm sure Acme quality was better than Jane Parker back than...I was always amazed when I would drive up to Rochester, NY and I would cut thru rte. 17 west and see that monsterous Jane Parker manufacturing facility up in Horseheads, NY, which was redeveloped many years ago after A&P closed it.Today, its Artisan breads or that 'hot bread' baked in store that the aroma rolls through and grabs you...times have certainly changed, haven't they?!
Bakery #1 opened in West Philadelphia in 1952, along with Warehouse #1. Bakery #1 was a big business, serving 350-400 stores during the 1950's and 1960's, including all of the 130 North Jersey stores. There were also smaller bakeries in Baltimore, Johnstown, and Buffalo. I would guess that the above ad ran around 1955-56. By 1959, when I started, the packaging had been updated. Bread was still sold under the "Supreme" label, and pies and pastries were sold under the "Virginia Lee" label. There is no question that "Virginia Lee" was in direct response to "Jane Parker." In fact Acme management always viewed "the Tea Company" as their only real competitor, completely ignoring the growth of ShopRite since the early 1950's in New Jersey, and during the last twenty years, the growth of Giant in Pennsylvania. Because bakery manufacturing was so important profitwise, they were very reluctant to install instore bakeries, until way in the late 1970's, when everyone else had already done it. Bakery #1 closed in the early 1980's and Acme acquired the former Horn & Hardart bakery on Blue Grass Road from the Food Fair bankruptcy estate. That bakery today makes Wonder Bread.
If you look at the map of the Acmes in the Wyoming Valley from 1969, featured previously on the blog, it shows that there was also an Acme bakery in Downtown Wilkes-Barre, just a little bit south of the Penn Plaza store.