Aeren’s Supermarket is the latest recipient of a loan initiative to increase access to fresh produce in New Orleans.
The retailer secured $120,000 from the New Orleans Fresh Food Retailer Initiative to expand its footprint and purchase new equipment, according to a news release.
The initiative, launched in 2011, awards low-cost financing for retailers to open, renovate or expand retail outlets in the city’s food deserts. Previous awards recipients include Circle Food Market and Whole Foods Market. The initiative is funded by Disaster-Community Development Block Grant funds, matched by the Hope Enterprise Corp. in a partnership with The Food Trust, a national non-profit aiming to expand access to fresh food.
To secure funding, applicants are required to open or renovate and substantially improve self-service supermarkets or grocery retailers primarily selling fresh produce, seafood, meat, dairy and other groceries, or develop a real estate project for a grocery retail tenant.