02-12-2020 B&B Grocery gets grant for produce cooler; Kute Kid; 2020 Census––Be Counted! Coloma

THIS KUTE KID IS… Cypress Jay Herman, welcomed into the world in December 2019. He is the first born of proud parents Joanna and Chad Herman of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Sandy and Robert Herman of Coloma are Cypress’ loving grandparents. Merlin and Jackie Hauch of Watervliet are excited to announce he is their 17th great-grandchild!

B&B Grocery gets grant for produce cooler

By Teresa Smithers When Papa Scott’s Market, formerly Watervliet Harding’s, closed its doors in Watervliet several years ago, residents were left without a place in town to get fresh groceries and produce. Enter B&B Grocery Outlet, originally on Main Street.

IMPROVING CUSTOMER SERVICE… Beth Wagner displays the new produce cooler at B&B Grocery Outlet. The cooler was purchased with the help of a grant from “Be Healthy Corner Stores Initiative.” (TCR photo by Teresa Smithers)

This grocery store owned and operated by husband and wife team Ben and Beth Wagner, quickly became the place where many Tri-City area residents buy their groceries. Success moved B&B to a larger building at 337 E. St. Joseph Street (Rookies) where they were able to sell even more discount groceries and fresh produce. But fresh produce doesn’t help anyone if no one knows you have it. Although they kept produce in a cooler, B&B needed one that allowed the selection to be more readily visible to customers. The trick was affording the upgrade. Efforts are underway here in Southwestern Michigan to help neighborhood stores like B&B to find resources and distributors in order to provide healthy food to customers. In order to help make this possible, Be Healthy Berrien has gone into a partnership with the YMCA and United Way to form the “Be Healthy Corner Stores Initiative.” Last year, in an effort to get the better coolers, B&B Grocery applied for help with “Be Healthy Corner Stores Initiative”. After nearly a year of surveys, assessments and field studies, B&B Grocery Outlet was approved for a grant. This grant has allowed them to buy new and better coolers. It may also help with future projects once those needs have been identified. B&B was also able to purchase an upright cooler for their stock of Coloma Frozen Foods, “Nature Blessed”. B&B Grocery is now the only local retail outlet for Coloma Frozen Foods, drawing customers from as far away as Chicago.