Cabarrus Healthy Corner Store

The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines food deserts as areas where there is limited access to fresh and healthy food. For those living in food deserts, small retail stores (also known as corner, convenience or neighborhood stores) are often the primary food source. Unfortunately, many neighborhood stores do not offer fresh, frozen or even canned fruit and vegetables. The Cabarrus Healthy Corner Store Network (CHCSN) spanned the full REACH grant period from 2014-2018 and increased the accessibility, availability and visibility of healthy items in Cabarrus County neighborhood stores.

Eligibility Requirements 

SNAP/EBT approved stores were eligible to participate and those located in food desserts were given selection priority. 

Recruitment 

The project coordinator visited eligible stores and shared information about the purpose of the project, past successes, and benefits of participating. The "Nominate your Neighborhood Store" campaign was launched in year two of REACH to encourage community members to participate in store recruitment. Individuals submitted suggestions via the REACH website (below), email or phone. 

Owners interested in participating were asked to sign a participation agreement, which formalized the owner’s commitment to increasing the number of healthy items offered. 

Data Collection

A store owner interview, environmental assessment and customer surveys were administered before and after the intervention to measure the project’s impact. Data collected before the intervention was used to tailor the initiative to the needs and strengths of each store. 

Store Owner Interview: Familiarized the coordinator with the store’s history, business practices as well as customer preferences and demographics. 

Environmental Assessment: Determined the number and type of healthy products located in the store. Photographs of the stores’ exterior and interior were taken. 

Customer Intercept Surveys: Identified healthy items that customers were interested in purchasing. 

Intervention 

Wood Retail Consulting provided merchandising and product placement training. Store changes were designed to improve both the store's aesthetic appeal and the visibility of healthy items. Following the training, the program coordinator worked with the store owner to identify healthy items with the best potential to meet customers’ needs and yield a financial profit. 

Click here to nominate your neighborhood corner store.
Nominate your Community Store_Page_1

Accomplishments

All stores increased the number of healthy items offered. 

Mi Pais Latino Supermarket’s weekly produce profits have tripled as a result of their participation. 

Acclaimed local artist Brenda Council painted a healthy community mural at Center City Maxx in downtown Concord to promote the store’s new changes. 

he Cabarrus Health Alliance's youth advocacy group, "Taking Responsible Actions In Life" hosted a beautification project at Center City Maxx in October 2015. 

Promotional ads and articles were placed in the Independent Tribune, Hola Noticias, Que Pasa and The Charlotte Observer to increase awareness of the project and highlight the store owners’ efforts. 

The initiative was highlighted as a NC Alliance for Health Success Story on August 18, 2016. 

Five Cabarrus County stores received the NC Healthy Food Retail designation in March 2017. 

Taste testings were held in April 2017 at eight corner store locations through partnership with Cooking Matters, a nationwide campaign that teaches families how to cook on a budget. 

The first Healthy Corner Store Network Meeting was held on July 19, 2017. 

Store Locations

Center City Maxx                  Danny’s Place                   Mi País Latino Supermarket
50 Cabarrus Ave W               300 Church St N                898 Concord Pkwy N
Concord, NC 28025               Concord, NC 28025           Concord, NC 28027    
704-710-0264                        704-788-7900                    704-784-0035
SNAP/EBT & WIC                 SNAP/EBT                       SNAP/EBT & WIC 

Mi Refugio Supermarket         Sam’s Mini Stop                West A Kwik Mart
476 Church St N                    1256 Old Charlotte Rd        1106 W A St
Concord, NC 28025                Concord, NC 28027            Concord, NC 28027
704-786-5001                         704-786-9996                    704-932-2255
SNAP/EBT & WIC                  SNAP/EBT                       SNAP/EBT & WIC


KM Corner Stop                     La Mexicana Grocery Store       SM Mart
440 Kerr St NW                     902 S. Cannon Blvd                   5501 Poplar Tent Rd
Concord, NC 28025                Kannapolis, NC 28027               Concord, NC 28027
704-785-2121                         704-933-0063                            704-788-1929
SNAP/EBT & WIC                  SNAP/EBT & WIC                     SNAP/EBT accepted