BALTIMORE — The signs are posted, the metal shutters dropped and locked and since the Save A Lot grocery store closed this week in East Baltimore, its former patrons are left now to pay a lot.
“I bought this and this,” said Anita Terry as she pulled a half-pint of ice cream and a package of ginger snaps out of a plastic bag. “$7, so it’s really having an impact on the neighborhood.”
Published reports suggest even before the pandemic the Midwestern company found itself hundreds of millions of dollars in debt, but this store had survived an earlier round of closures.
“I heard they were going out of business. People were stealing a lot. I don’t know,” said Jerome Walker who adds what is clear is that he will no longer be able to just walk a block or so from a senior high rise where he often picked up groceries for his neighbors.
“It was closer for the seniors to get here, get their stuff, come back,” said Walker. “Now, the ones that don’t drive---it’s going to be hard on them.”
For those who can afford bus fare, a hack or a taxi ride, the price of grocery shopping is going up, which few here can afford.
“The ones that are left are really expensive shopping markets, so you know, us poor people, we better start learning how to grow our own food again instead of depending on technology or the government to do it, because they don’t care about us,” said Cherelle August who shops for her elderly mother.
When we contacted the company’s consumer relations department today, they told us their records did not reflect the store’s closure yet and our request to find out why the store closed has not yet been answered.