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Old 10-13-2019, 07:34 PM   #1
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Locally owned and Ethinic Groceries

I have gotten out of the habit of shopping at Mediterranean Grocery even though it is only one mile from home. I ran out of Buckwheat groats though and Kroger doesn't sell them at all. Amazon gets $10.49 for 1500 grams, $3.31/lb. Bought 900 grams at Mediterranean Grocery for $2.49 which is $1.26/lb. While I was there I also got some fresh Bulgarian feta cheese for $4.69/lb. This creamy and delicious sheeps milk cheese comes in a vat about 30" x 18" and you cut off a hunk the size you want. If I don't buy it from them I get a vastly inferior product from Kroger for roughly $1 more per pound. This little store has been in business at that location 20 years or more and I used to buy my olive oil, rice and lots of other things there. Since it was a weekday shortly after opening when I was there last week, there weren't any other customers and I had the chance to shoot the breeze with the owner for a little while. He says business is off quite a bit because people are more reluctant to buy from ethnic stores than he has seen ever before. We didn't discuss the cause of the change in attitude.

This business is locally owned by an American citizen. I'm resolving to buy as much as practical from him and from La Fiesta Supermarket, a locally owned Mexican grocery. I'll still shop at Kroger, the dominant multinational corporate grocery chain in this region, but I'll be spending less there in favor of these neighborhood businesses. Where it's close, the preference will be the locally owned store. There are several excellent Asian groceries in this little city as well and although they are not as close to my home, I'll start working one or two of them into the rotation.

Penseys Spices isn't locally owned but it is a family-run chain headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconson with a brick and mortar store 2.4 miles away. I'll be darkening their door on a regular basis too.

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Old 10-13-2019, 08:07 PM   #2
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I prefer the locally owned stores too. Supermarkets are mostly a convenience.
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:10 PM   #3
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That's great that you have places like that nearby, skilletlicker! And it's great you are going to be shopping there more. I go to a lot of those places, to get ethnic ingredients, and even have that Mexican grocery in my town now! And to think, I used to have to drive up to NYC in early to mid 80s to stock up on all sorts of foods - even Philly had none of them, except Italian and Chinese. Now, many of those things are in supermarkets, but I still go to the ethnic stores for a lot. And I take the owners some presents from my garden, when I have excess!
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:20 PM   #4
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Im a big fan of the smaller, locally owned ethnic stores.
Primarily Indian, and Oriental Market . They are much smaller than a typical grocery store but they have much more interesting things to buy. They dont try to please the trendy, yet carry things that are authentic to their regular customers. The people who work there are also friendly, so they help , advice and suggestions on the things ai buy.
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Old 10-14-2019, 12:39 AM   #5
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I live in an upscale suburb. It wasn't that way when I moved here in 1995, but it is now. The cost of real estate is just too much for most "locally owned and operated" stores to handle, and still compete with the big players, like Kroger.

We do have ethnic groceries, but even those are owned by a company with a chain of stores.

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Old 10-14-2019, 05:44 AM   #6
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We havre a large university near where I live.
The university has a very large amount of International Students.
These ethnic stores have popped up to cater to the increase of the international population.
Anytime Im planning a road trip, and I see we are going to be near some large university, I get excited , because they're tends to be a higher amount of ethnic and vegetarian restaurants near them, to cater ti this international population.
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Old 10-14-2019, 06:32 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
We havre a large university near where I live.
The university has a very large amount of International Students.
These ethnic stores have popped up to cater to the increase of the international population.
Anytime Im planning a road trip, and I see we are going to be near some large university, I get excited , because they're tends to be a higher amount of ethnic and vegetarian restaurants near them, to cater ti this international population.
Google maps is boon to this kind of exploration. Open a map of the neighborhood and click the icon for restaurants, groceries, bars, or even coffee and little ethnic enclaves become visible that you might not even notice if you were driving down the street.
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