Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The grocery store/supermarket, er, market in Charlotte has been heating up over the past year. You've been keeping up with the news, right?

Publix is moving into the area with three new stores either planned or currently under construction--South End, Ballantyne, and Cornelius--and it's opening a Charlotte division headquarters. After years of locals wishing, Whole Foods finally opened its first store here last August, in SouthPark. Salisbury-based Food Lion, which operates 1,100 stores in 10 states, has been making all kinds of changes over the past year, trying to keep up with the competition. And our other locally-based supermarket chain, Harris Teeter, is the talk of the town (and business world) after news yesterday that it's being acquired by Kroger. And lastly, as it does to almost every retail sector, Walmart continues to be a major player with its grocery stores.

We all have to eat to live, but who would've thought the market would become so competitive? (#1stWorldProblems.) But amid all of the grand announcements being made and big-box grocery stores opening, there are a few smaller stores that have launched--first in Charlotte at that--over the past year that say a lot about our grocery shopping preferences and the city as a desirable market.


Opened: October 2012 (two locations)
The Appeal: Fine wines, domestic and imported beers, specialty foods; café seating area, in-store wine consultants; educational classes focused on wine, beer, and food pairings; a beer room, and a walk-in humidor.
Company: A division of Harris Teeter.
Address: 13108 Eastfield Rd., Huntersville, 704-875-2892, 5939; Weddington-Monroe Rd., Wesley Chapel, 704-821-2686,

The Baby Grocery Store

Opened: November 2012
The Appeal: Parents shopping for babies for items such as all-natural, organic, and non-GMO food products; diapers, wipes, and environmentally-friendly household items; staff available to answer questions about products and choices like making baby food, cloth diapering, and baby wearing.
Company: After operating a mall kiosk for a year, Charlotte entrepreneur Darren Gann opened the first brick and mortar location in Charlotte, with future plans to expand into other states.
Address: 10225 Park Rd., Charlotte, 704-543-8635,

Lettuce Carry

Opened: March 2012
The Appeal: Offers more than 15,000 items including fresh food (local and organic), household items, health and beauty supplies, tobacco, beer, and wine; delivered to your door at no additional charge in a refrigerated truck.
Company: Privately owned; delivers to most of the Charlotte region including all of Mecklenburg County, Concord, Mooresville, Gastonia, Fort Mill, Rock Hill, and Monroe.
Contact: 704-962-3019,


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