Publix officially opened its GreenWise Market in Tallahassee’s Collegetown Thursday. It’s the first store of its kind for the company.
Tallahassee’s store is a prototype. Publix has plans to build several more across the Southeast region through 2019. The store features mostly organic and natural goods and like regular Publix stores, GreenWise Market offers ready-made food choices. Many are new options like burrito bowls, pizza, acai bowls, and on weekends, a hot wing bar. But Dwaine Stevens, the company’s Media & Community Relations Manager, says some classic Publix favorites won’t be sold.
“Because of course we’ve been hearing from some of our students saying, ‘You mean you can’t get a PubSub here?’ But we do have great sandwiches here, we want people to come out and explore, and that’s what this whole prototype concept is about, time of discovery, come in and discover these new product offerings”, he says.
Stevens says the star of the store is the new “Pour” station, where shoppers can order lattes, Kombutcha, smoothies, or try some of the ten craft beers on tap. Stevens says seven of those ten beers are from local brewing companies. Local farmers are also integral to the store.
Stevens explains, “It is a big part of it, we look at localization as a big part of our approach to providing product offerings, so we’re constantly looking at local suppliers to put into our product mix.”
Shoppers at GreenWise Market also have the option of donating some of their bill to support the Leon County community. The program is called “GreenWise Market Good Works” and it doesn’t cost anything extra to participate. Customers can opt in online, then at checkout Publix will donate a percentage of the customer’s bill. This year’s program has three partners: the Boys and Girls Club of the Big Bend, the Foundation for Leon County Schools, and Sustainable Tallahassee.
“Now that doesn’t mean we won’t be supporting other organizations, you know through the Jacksonville division, divisional budget, as well as Publix supermarket charities. Because we want to be all inclusive whenever we support organizations that reflect who we are as a company”, says Stevens.
Stevens says in future years the program’s partner organizations may change or remain the same, based on customer input.
On Game Days, Stevens says the store’s parking spaces will go to shoppers only. To make sure every space is available they’ve even found alternative parking for their employees on those days.