Thursday, January 5, 2017

New Grocery Store for Tree-Huggers

Earth Fare: Coming soon to Franklin Road in Roanoke.
Let's hope that the new Earth Fare grocery store, the one for tree-hugging, veggie-loving liberals, doesn't do an Aldi on us. The Asheville, N.C.-based chain (39 stores) will locate on Franklin Road within the next few months, just down the street from the failed Ukrops, which is now occupied by Carilion Institute for Orthopedics and Neurosciences.

Ukrops overestimated the interest in its particular brand and seems to have underestimated the value of being open on Sundays, which it is not. Aldi's came in promising WalMart-style low prices, but my experience has been less than pleasant. Aldi's is so often out of the basics that I drive past it on the way to Kroger now. Frankly, I have not found its prices, especially for fresh veggies and meat, to be anything special.

 Earth Fare's specialty is healthy food, a real novelty in these parts (unless you include Fresh Market, which will be less than half a mile away, and the Roanoke Valley Natural Foods Co-operative, about two miles away). It avoids high fructose corn syrup, artificial ingredients, growth hormones and antibiotics.

The store will be a modest 24,000 square feet (a typical Kroger is about 50,000) and will have an 80-seat cafe on premises.

For many Roanokers, this is a welcome addition to the food competition. For others, it's not in the 'hood and won't be a player.


  1. Not in your 'hood. But it's bound to be a welcome addition to the other stores, including Tinnel's not far away, that carry unusual foods. Why your negative attitude?

    1. I don't see the attitude as negative at all. Some of that was tongue in cheek. I wish the store well. History in that spot and in that neighborhood is not on its side, though.