A survey of rural Minnesota grocery store owners points to serious challenges facing regions of the state already coping with a lack of access to healthy and affordable food. University of Minnesota study spokeswoman Kathy Draeger says 60-percent of them are going to transition out of their business in the next ten years. She says the vast majority of store owners do not have a plan in place to help assure the store will continue to operate. Draeger says that’s the contributing factor to the loss of rural grocery stores. She says it is also hard for some of the “ma and pop” stores to compete with the larger grocery store chains. Draeger says often when a consumer works in a regional center they’ll do the bulk of their grocery shopping at a large chain grocery store. The study questionnaire was mailed to grocery stores in communities with populations less than 2,500.
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