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    Homeland Stores to Roll Out Store Greenhouse

    Project is result of a partnership with BrightFarms

    Homeland Stores, the second-largest grocery retailer in Oklahoma, as well as the largest traditional grocery store format operator in the state, will open a store greenhouse that will be financed, built and operated by BrightFarms, with the aim of supplying the 76-store chain with fresh, local produce year-round. Homeland pledged to buy BrightFarms' produce by signing the grocery industry's second long-term produce purchase agreement (PPA).

    New York-based BrightFarms builds greenhouses and grows produce directly at supermarkets and distribution centers, teaming with local farmers to grow lettuces, tomatoes and herbs.

    “This partnership supports our commitment to sell the absolute freshest produce and our commitment to the community,” said Darryl Fitzgerald, CEO of Oklahoma City, Okla.-based HAC Inc., which operates 75 stores in Oklahoma and one in Haysville, Kan., under the of Homeland, Country Mart, and United Supermarkets banners, employing more than 4,000 associates.

    A recent study by Chicago-based Mintel found that 52 percent of consumers said locally sourced products were more important to them than organic products.
     

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