A 28-year-old has opened the first discount grocery outlet in the $52 million Sharswood Ridge, Pennsylvania, shopping center.
Dante Rose grew up in the North Philly neighborhood and noticed the lack of fresh fruits and vegetables.
“That’s where we’re from,” he told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “I know the neighborhood. I know how unique this neighborhood is, because if you go four blocks over, you’re on Temple’s campus, and if you go five blocks down, you’re in Brewerytown. It became really important for me to be in a community that we’re familiar with.”
Rose knew he wanted to be a part of the solution to this problem. He took to studying engineering at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland designing concepts for the grocery store franchise.
He scraped together savings to buy into the franchise. Then, on July 28, during the store’s grand opening, he helped cut the ribbon of the $5 million store.
The grocery outlet shared a post with supporters, thanking them for attending the grand opening event on Thursday.
The caption read, “Sharswood Grocery Outlet is now Open!!! Thank you to everyone who came out and supported us yesterday for our Grand Opening. Come shop at your local black owned grocery store. Thank you to Philadelphia Housing Authority, Mosiac Development, SHIFT and so many other supporters.”
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President and CEO of the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA), Kelvin A. Jeremiah said the neighborhood has not had a grocery store since the riots of the 1960s.
“What existed here was bodegas that didn’t offer fresh fruits and vegetables,” Jeremiah said. “The grocery store is an incredible achievement for the community. This is what the community wanted. This is a significant investment for the neighborhood.”
Congratulations Dante! Keep up the incredible work.