HUDSON — The city’s first income-based, traveling grocery store is set to open a permanent storefront next week.
Rolling Grocer 19 is slated to open a brick-and-mortar shop March 5 at 6 S. Second St. — the former site of Greater Hudson Promise Neighborhood.
The grocery store — known for its sliding scale pricing system based on income — previously existed as a mobile store on wheels that made regular stops around the city.
After its first three successful months on the road, the operators decided to set up shop in a more permanent location to serve customers no matter what the weather outside.
“We definitely had an increased demand, and with winter coming, we realized it was going to be more challenging to be as reliable as we wanted to be,” Rolling Grocer 19’s Program Director Audrey Berman said. “So, by opening up a storefront, we knew that we would always going to be available to the community.”
The store will be open from 2 to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The store is closed Mondays and Sundays.
The news is welcome to city residents who otherwise have to travel to supermarkets outside city limits, such as Shoprite in Greenport and Hannaford in Livingston.
“It’s really a great project,” Hudson Common Council President and Rolling Grocer 19 shopper Thomas DePietro said. “Finally, a grocery store that can serve those who can’t get to Fairview Avenue easily. Its carefully selected products may even steer shoppers to eating more healthfully and economically. What’s not to like?”
Like the mobile grocery trailer, the store will allow customers to choose how much they will spend on their items. Products are sold using a fair pricing system, which allows customers to pay for items based on their income and financial situation. The first time customers shop at Rolling Grocer 19, they choose one of three price levels.
Those who previously signed up for the store’s point-of-sale system will be automatically transferred to the system at the new location, according to a statement from Rolling Grocer 19.
The mobile grocery store has filled a niche in the community, as Hudson does not have a supermarket within the city limits. In December, ShopRite, which was in walking distance of the city, moved from to 70 Healy Blvd. to more than a mile north into the former Price Chopper at 351 Fairview Ave. Price Chopper closed at the end of September.
With an area of 600 feet, Rollilng Grocer 19’s new store will stock the same staple items featured in the trailer while increasing its variety to accommodate more products.
Store officials are looking to expand its mobile route beyond Hudson to the rest of Columbia County in the summer, with potential first stops in Valatie, Stuyvesant and New Lebanon, Berman said.
Rolling Grocer 19 is supported by a grant from the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation and other donors. The project was founded by the Hawthorne Valley Association and Long Table Harvest with assistance from the Hudson Core Group.
To reach reporter Amanda Purcell, call 518-828-1616 ext. 2500, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or tweet to @amandajpurcell.