The Boxcar Grocer
April 12, 2012
In many underprivileged neighborhoods there is an inadequate supply of healthy food. Due to (often mistaken) preconceptions about crime rates, insurance, shoplifting, and vandalism, chain supermarkets are reluctant to open stores in these areas.
As a result, many people who live in these neighborhoods are forced to rely on local corner stores which carry mostly overpriced, unhealthy food.
Sister and brother Alison and Alphonzo Cross are trying to put an end to that in Atlanta with a new venture, The Boxcar Grocer. According to its co-founders, The Boxcar Grocer is “at the intersection of food justice and high concept retail.” In other words, it is testament to the fact that you can have a corner store in an urban area that provides healthy food choices to those with limited transportation options.
The Boxcar Grocer gets much of its produce from growers in and around the city of Atlanta. There is great information, including videos, on the Community page of their web site about some of the farmers they work with.
As the Cross team puts it, “with community support, we will have a thriving model of convenience store retail that successfully unifies the ideals of the larger environmental and food movements with the needs and voices of diverse urban communities such as Castleberry Hill, Mechanicsville and the West End areas of Atlanta.”
I couldn’t have said it better myself.