Salvage grocery store helps community
A business owner in Thayer, Kansas is helping his community. A place called Bargain Barn, where folks can save money on groceries and reduce food waste in the area.
Cookies, pretzels, soup. All items you find on the shelves of a chain grocery store. But at the Bargain Barn, food sells for much less.
“I saw a need,” says owner David Tull.
It’s all salvage food, items that are from overstock or close to or past its sell by date. But everything is still edible.
“Everything that’s here is still state inspected and we have to pass the same inspections that all the other major stores do,” says Tull.
He gets his stock from auctions, insurance claims, or through contacts he has made over the past 5 years of business. Today, unloading goods he got earlier in Arkansas.
The food on the shelves of Bargain Barn is typically 30 to 70 percent cheaper than at larger grocery stores. The owner says that they have a 2 week turnaround on shipments.
“We’ll have people come in and say I thought you just got a shipment in and there obviously is not any because we’ve sold it that fast,” says Tull.
With 5 cent candy bars, $1 boxes of cereal and 50 cent milk, it’s no surprise items fly off the shelves. Residents appreciate having a store where they can stretch a dollar farther.
“The people who run it are friendly and they just have good bargains and I like bargains. I’m on social security, I’m retired,” says customer Ann Wylie.
“If it don’t cost as much, I can buy more of it,” says Wesley Babcock
“I had some parents that came in and said well this has really been a blessing to us because we usually couldn’t afford to buy but 1 or 2 boxes of cereal but with your prices we can buy each child one and we can have a lot more savings for things that we do need,” says Tull.
The store also sells food for special diets, including gluten free items, and international foods at cheaper prices.
A business successful in more than 1 way. Customers steadily browsing the shelves and community members being helped.