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Dollar General clears path to fresh produce self-distribution

In December, COO Jeff Owen said Dollar General doubled the number of stores with fresh produce in 2021, from 1,000 to 2,000, with plans to add produce to another 1,000 by the end of 2022.

Dollar General BB #:172794 wrapped up the initial rollout of its DG Fresh initiative, which clears the company to focus on adding more fresh produce to stores, and possibly self-distribution of fresh produce.

The Goodlettsville, TN-based company is now delivering refrigerated and frozen items to 17,500 stores from 12 facilities, said Jeff Owen, Chief Operating Officer.

“And while produce was not included in our initial rollout plans, we believe DG Fresh provides a potential path to accelerating our fresh produce offering in up to 10,000 stores over time as we look to further capitalize on our extensive self-distribution capabilities,” Owen said, during the earnings call.

Fresh produce is now in more than 1,500 stores, with plans to expand to a total of more than 2,000 stores by the end of the year.

Dollar General plans to open 1,050 stores this year and remodel 1,750.

While the company’s same-store sales couldn’t keep up with a record 2020, CEO Todd Vasos said basket size is bigger, as is customer base.

“We believe we will ultimately exit the pandemic with a larger, broader, and more engaged customer base than we entered it, resulting in an even stronger foundation from which to grow,” Vasos said, during the call.

Read the earnings release here.

Pamela Riemenschneider is the Retail Editor for Blue Book Services.