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Natural Grocers to Open in Little Rock

2 min read

Publicly traded Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage Inc. of Lakewood, Colorado, is entering the Little Rock grocery market for the first time, opening a Natural Grocers store Jan. 19 at 9210 Rodney Parham Road. 

The site marks the natural and organic groceries and dietary supplements retailer’s second Arkansas store. It opened its first last year in Fayetteville.  

Natural Grocers (NYSE: NGVC) offers USDA Certified Organic fresh produce and a mix of national brands and “locally grown, raised and manufactured products from Arkansas.” It also offers free nutrition classes, cooking demos and health coaching. The store will be open seven days a week.

Founded in 1955, the company operates 107 stores in 18 states and has 2,700 employees. As of November, it planned to open additional stores in Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Oregon, Texas, Utah and Washington. In fiscal 2016, it plans to add 23 stores.

The company says its stores have anywhere from 5,000 to 16,000 SF of selling space. Same-store sales have increased for 53 consecutive quarters, the company says.

In fiscal 2015, Natural Grocers reported gross profit of $182.1 million, up from $151.5 million in the previous year, and sales of $624.7 million, up from $520.7 million.

A Natural Grocers affiliate, EVC Little Rock LLC of Topeka, Kansas, purchased the 1.55-acre site for the Little Rock store for $1.03 million from Parks Land Co. LLLP, led by Donald Parks. The site was formerly home to a Fu Xing Asian Buffet restaurant, which had previously been a China King Buffet, a New China Buffet and a Western Sizzlin. 

McPherson Contractors Inc., also of of Topeka, took out a $1.7 million building permit on the Natural Grocers project.

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