WALNUT — More than eight years after the closing of the local grocery store, plans are falling into place for opening a new grocery store in Walnut.
Owners Dave and Robin Jameson have announced that they are on track for opening the store this November. The store will carry numerous grocery staples, including produce and meat, but also a wide variety of other items as well, plus natural and gluten free choices.
The Jamesons purchased the former Walnut Family Foods building in October 2016 with the intent of using it as a butcher shop for their farm-to-table meat business. After many months working with the Illinois Department of Agriculture, Lee County, Bureau County, and the village of Walnut, building and remodeling is in progress for a slaughter and chill facility off site as well as butchering, packaging, and freezing areas at the grocery store building. The couple intends to open the beef and pork butcher shop early in 2018.
According to the owners, the couple originally intended to open a meat shop that also sold a few of their other food items, but over the last few months that idea expanded to a small grocery, and now to a full-size grocery. They are working with a grocery retail counselor and are set up with a grocery distributor out of Indiana that specializes in small town groceries.
“They are wonderful to work with, and very supportive as we take each step toward opening the store,” said Robin Jameson.
“We have received so much encouragement already from the community,” said the Jamesons. “People are very excited to have a grocery store back in town, of course for the convenience, but also to shop smaller (compared to big box stores) and to support Walnut businesses and families.”
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