Grocers explain challenges
Congressman hears from local business first-hamd
Congressman Roger Marshall heard first-hand Friday about the challenges of running a small-town food store when he visited Carlsons’ Grocery in Marion.
After Greg, Linda, and Mitch Carlson gave him a history of the store, he asked what their biggest challenges were.
They named health care, help, and having only one warehouse to supply them.
Linda Carlson said a computerized food stamp and WIC program had made clerking a lot simpler.
The Carlsons talked about the many people they had employed over the years since they became store owners in 1990.
City administrator Roger Holter bragged about all the things the Carlsons do for the community, such as providing food for the county food bank and employing young people.
“We’ve enjoyed good friendships with the kids,” Greg said.
Marshall said new legislation included increased funding for food banks.
“What advice would you give struggling grocery stores?” Marshall asked.
“Provide good fresh meat and produce,” Greg said, “and have a good banker.”
The Carlsons cited the need for better high speed Internet for the area.
Mayor and banker Todd Heitschmidt attempted to impress on Marshall the plight of farmers due to drought, low prices, and trade disruptions.
Marshall was on his way to El Dorado to celebrate his high school class’s 40th reunion.