GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. —
Even before Meijer opened its first stores in Wisconsin
this month, it formed a relationship with farmers in the
state, according to the retailer.
to purchasing local produce represents an annual
economic impact of nearly $100 million, according to a
“Meijer has a
longstanding commitment to buying locally grown produce
when available as long as the quality meets our high
standards,” said Jerry Suter, vice president of fresh
merchandising for Meijer, in a statement. “Not only is
buying local produce the right thing to do, it’s what
our customers want and deserve. We are currently one of
the largest purchasers of local produce in the markets
Meijer works with
more than 125 local growers, an increase of 25 percent
during the past two years, within its six-state
footprint. The company began purchasing potatoes from
Alsum Farms & Produce in Wisconsin before the retailer
even opened stores in Kenosha and Grafton.
As Meijer continues
to grow in the Midwest, including with a store planned
for Waukesha, it will continue to seek partnerships with
local growers, according to the company.