Green Grocer Assists Local Stores

The Green Grocer Project aims to increase fresh, health, local affordable food for Detroit’s residents, while simultaneously stimulating investment in the city’s neighborhoods. Since the program launched in 2010, it has successfully supported investments to expand local food access through grants and the leveraging of private capital. In fact, the expected investment for participating stores’ new construction, expansions and renovations will exceed $50 million.

The Green Grocer Project was started with a $500,000 grant from the Kresge Foundation to support Detroit’s grocery economy to improve the quality and quantity of fresh food offerings and by providing technical assistance and façade improvements, grants and financing assistance for grocery improvements and expansions. Today, Detroit is home to more than 70 full-service, independently owned supermarkets, and the program has engaged more than 50 of them. $540,000 has been awarded in façade improvement program matching grants to 18 Detroit stores that will result in over $5 million in investment. $510,000 in technical assistance of up to $30,000 each was awarded to 19 Detroit grocery stores. The project has now also received funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Hudson Weber Foundation in order to continue its work throughout Detroit. The program has received the Bronze Award from the International Economic Development Council for Neighborhood Development.

The façade improvement program in GGP gives 50/50 matching grants up to $50,000 to transform the street look of their stores. Façade improvements include attractive exterior materials, seasonal landscaping, inviting signage and awnings, and interesting windows and displays.