Meijer Helps Michigan Small Business

Meijer launched the ‘Made in Michigan’ initiative in January 2012 with the Michigan State University Product Center to help strengthen the state’s economy by supporting Michigan small businesses.

The initial offering of 49 grocery items - including marinara sauce, blueberry butter and gluten-free baking mixes - resulted in an estimated economic impact of $400,000 statewide.

The lineup of Michigan-made grocery products is available in all of the 102 Meijer stores in Michigan. Items including barbeque sauces, cherry butter, salsas, guacamole and kettle chips had an estimated economic impact of $900,000 statewide last year said Matt Birbeck, High Impact Venture Action Team project manager for the MSU Product Center.

"It's been a fantastic opportunity for all Michigan businesses to have this local section at Meijer; many of them see amazing results," Birbeck said. "Now that it's in every Michigan Meijer store, everybody gets to see and taste the diversity of this great state."

Meijer collaborated with the MSU Product Center and its HI-VAT team to grow the Made In Michigan program and ensure that all the suppliers had the correct food practices and supply chain procedures. All items are scheduled to have shelf space for a year, and will be given the opportunity to branch out chain-wide. From the original items that were featured in 33 Meijer stores last year, a few products are being considered for permanent placement on all Meijer shelves.

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