New grocery store to help combat food insecurity in Bourbon County

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FORT SCOTT, Ks. — A new grocery store in downtown Fort Scott is an effort to help residents get the food they need.

Bourbon County is ranked 4th worst in the state of Kansas for food insecurity.

The grocery store will be in the old Kress Building on Main Street and will have locally grown produce, a salad bar, and a deli.

The store will partner with Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas to provide storage for their food delivery service.

City leaders say the increase in residential housing, the lack of food supply to residents West of Highway 69, and the opportunity for partnerships to support local produce and other small businesses make this a great investment for downtown.

Jody Hoener, Economic Director, Bourbon County, said, “Because it’s not a matter of just being hungry. It’s that access to food. So, some of the things that impact access to food is employment, your poverty status, transportation, and then of course also the physical location of where you can get your food items. We have a wonderful partnership in the blossoming stages right now, that will allow this this facility here, this grocery store, to meet a public purpose.”

Prior to the grocery store opening, a collaboration of local community resource agencies will open the B-WERC Center, or Bourbon County Workforce and Entrepreneurship Resource Center. The store is expected to be complete in late December.

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