The Beginning

From its modest beginning as a small store on Penn Avenue, Pennsylvania to its present status as a multi-facility corporation, the story of Schiff’s is the story of an American dream. Founded by Morris Schiff in 1945, the business operated for 24 years servicing local hotels and restaurants with wholesale food and meat.

Then in 1969, Mr. Schiff’s, confronted with new federal regulations in the industry, informed his employees that he was closing his business. At the time Schiff’s had 4 employees; a manager, a bookkeeper, meat cutter and a driver. Mr. Alyn Scheatzle was employed as the meat cutter.

The young meat cutter from Duryea approached Mr. Schiff’s to purchase the business. Mr. Scheatzle purchased the company from Mr. Schiff and the company became known as Schiff’s Restaurant Services Incorporated. Through Mr. Scheatzle’s direction and leadership, the name Schiff’s became a household word in the Scranton area, as well as in the restaurant industry.

In 1970 Schiff’s celebrated its 25th Anniversary.

To accompany the substantial growth Schiff’s moved to 3410 North Main Avenue in Scranton, which is its present location. The new facility was originally the Kleinberger Pickle Factory, which was a larger physical plant then they had previously. In 1974 Schiff’s opened the first wholesale Cash and Carry, under federal inspection (U.S.D.A). Here the public could shop shoulder to shoulder with the wholesale food customers.

Growth and Change

Over the next several years new departments are added: a deli and bakery featuring homemade local delights, an in-house smokehouse to process Schiff’s famous smoked kielbasi, and a fresh fish and a fresh produce department, but H.R.I. remains the backbone of the business. Employment reaches 135 people. 110 full time, including 20 supervisory personnel and 25 part-time workers.


A Beverage Center is opened next door to the Cash & Carry, which allows customers to purchase their favorite selections in beer, soda, snacks, cigarettes and lottery.


Mark Reese and Dave Pitcavage, both with over forty years of combined food service experience, purchase the minority share of Schiff’s. Mark Reese is appointed, as president and Dave Pitcavage becomes the appointed vice president, with Mr. Scheatlze staying as chairperson.


The original Beverage Center building is demolished to provide additional parking for the Cash & Carry. Schiff’s purchases Phillips Tire and Gilarde Environment Building. The new modern facility across the Route 81 ramp from Schiff’s Cash & Carry now houses the Beverage Center, including a drive-thru operation.


Schiff’s Beverage Center wins the prestigious Scranton Chamber of Commerce PRIDE & PROGRESS AWARD.


Schiff’s celebrates its 50th Anniversary.


One Day Meat Sale Starts.


Mark and Donna Reese purchase the majority share of Schiff’s from Mr. Scheatzle, who retirees with over 49 years experience in the food industry. Today, he can still be found in the store checking on items in the deli and chatting with the loyal customers. A million dollar expansion is completed adding approx. 40% more shopping area for customers.


Schiff’s is awarded Distributor of the Year from Pocahontas Foods USA


Company Truck fleet expands to 4 trucks to serve the increasing Food Service.


Company Truck fleet expands to 5 trucks.


Company Truck fleet expands to 6 trucks.


Schiff’s is awarded the Progressive Group Alliance Silver Star Award for Largest Percentage Increase in Program Purchases


Mark and Donna Reese purchase a 1.89 acre property adjacent to the Cash & Carry to secure employee parking for the future, which includes a 10,000 Sq. Ft facility. The facility, now named Schiff’s Plaza, is upgraded and has ability to house up to 7 different rental units. Additionally, a 48 ft. freezer / cooler trailer was added to the fleet to service area picnics, festivals and fairs.

Today the company employees about 150 people and services around 350 restaurants and institutions daily. From its humble beginnings to the present Schiff’s maintains its mission to grow and serve its customer’s with Top-Quality, First-Class Service and Low Prices day in and day out.