In an effort to emphasize the importance of grocery stores — especially in rural areas — the Initiative Foundation is hosting the Save Your Hometown Grocery Store workshop from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 12, in Little Falls. Participants will hear from industry experts as they present information about organizing and financing food cooperatives and other ownership models. A panel of rural grocers will also share their experiences and lessons learned.
“When local grocery stores close, people are forced to travel further and/or buy less healthy, fresh food. If this happens, the odds are good that other businesses in the community will also experience declining sales,” said Don Hickman, vice president for community and economic development at the Initiative Foundation. “For many rural towns, a locally-owned grocery store or co-op can be their primary anchor business.”
Community and business leaders who are interested in establishing or sustaining grocery and food retail in rural areas are especially encouraged to attend.