From their open letter:

Here are the facts:

1. The Boxcar Grocer is a healthy corner store/convenience store NOT a grocery store or supermarket.
2. The Boxcar Grocer is an actual 3,000 sq/ft store located in downtown Atlanta NOT a food truck.
3. The Boxcar Grocer retails healthy and local food/grocery products including, but not limited to all natural, tomatoes and toothpaste, honey and hair products, bread and baby food, ice cream and eye cream, dog food and diapers.

Hopefully, these facts won’t be misunderstood and will stand on their own merit. However, there is one fact that I would like to expound on and that is that The Boxcar Grocer is a multi-store business model. To stay UN-misunderstood I am going to repeat myself…

The Boxcar Grocer is a multi-store business model.


Here we go: Your average Publix grocery store is approximately 40,000 sq/ft and costs about $7Million dollars to build. Your average Wal-Mart is approximately 100,000-200,000 sq/ft and can cost $20-$30Million dollars to build (neither of these figures takes into account tax subsidies that local governments give to these companies or the land access issues in more dense environments). And for those of you who are unclear as to what a tax subsidy is, it is defined as a benefit given by the government to groups or individuals usually in the form of a cash payment or tax reduction.

Small businesses like The Boxcar Grocer don’t get any of these tax subsidies to build more stores.

Here’s the kicker… We can build 200 stores across the US for less than some Wal-Marts. Please don’t misunderstand me when I say that for $20Million dollars (less than some Wal-Marts) we can start to put a nail in the coffin of food inaccessibility in America and at the same time strengthen communities rather than obliterate them. Being small allows us to be more nimble, more accessible, more of a part of the communities we enter in, more open to suggestions from you…by being less we are able to be so much more.