Grand Rapids neighborhood market named sustainable business of the year –

South East Market, at 1220 Kalamazoo Ave. SE, in Grand Rapids on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. The new neighborhood grocery store is set to open MLK Day. Co-founder Alita Kelly said she sees a connection between King's push for equal rights for Black Americans and her goal of chipping away at the chronic health issues that disproportionally plague low-income people of color. (Cory Morse | Cory Morse |
GRAND RAPIDS, MI — South East Market, a neighborhood grocery store that provides local, sustainably raised meat and poultry as well as produce grown by women and farmers of color, has been named the 2022 West Michigan Sustainable Business of the Year.
The store, which was opened in January 2021 by Alita Kelly and Khara DeWit, received the award from the West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum, a nonprofit that promotes sustainability. The business was recognized because of its efforts to advance climate leadership and social justice, as well as to create a “circular economy.”
DeWitt said she was “honored” to receive the recognition.
“We birthed this vision with sustainability and equity as core to our mission,” she said in a press release. “We are just one small player in a collective vision for a sovereign and resilient local food system for West Michigan.”
The award was provided to South East Market Oct. 5 during the West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum’s Triple Bottom Line Bash at the Peter Martin Wege Theatre.
“So much is possible if we reinvest appropriately and center our local communities in our decisions around profitability,” DeWitt said. “We hope this award ignites further startups and shows them the value of a community working in tandem to lean into the risk and push forward with their values for a sustainable future rooted in equity for generations beyond us to enjoy the bounty of Earth and the people around us.”
Other organizations honored during the event include:
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