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Chicory Market Continues to Provide Locals With Fresh, Homegrown Foods

By Sophie Miller and Ben Policicchio
Hottytoddy.com interns
sbmille2@go.olemiss.edu; bfpolici@go.olemiss.edu

The Chicory Market in Oxford has adjusted its service model and operations to continue to serve customers safely and efficiently in light of the current events. The local grocery store is a staple in the town and has always provided quality produce, meals, and a welcoming environment.

Chicory Market has always supported local farms and wants to spread awareness for small businesses. As COVID-19 develops nationally, many businesses must adjust their daily operations to safely cater to their communities.

The Curbside Cafe, featuring Chicory Market employee Richard. Photo via Instagram.

Although many are sheltering in place, people still need groceries and Chicory Market is working hard to make sure the citizens of Oxford still have an outlet for their food needs. The Chicory Market has turned to technology to assist them in serving their community while keeping customers safe.

“Customers can either call in or email in their orders, and as soon we receive it, we work to fulfill the order, call them back, and usually give them a time to come and pick it up,” said Juliet Aguerre, a staff member of the Chicory Market. “After they pick it up, we just charge the order to their card through our iPads.”

Chicory Market is filling orders for customers who they ask will remain inside their cars. This mitigates the risks that come with people shopping as they regularly would. The less foot traffic through the store, the lower the chances become of contamination. With the help of technology, the staff is able to process both their orders and their payment without putting patrons at any risk of infection. To further ensure protection, Chicory Market staff goes to great lengths to keep the store and employees sanitary.

“We sanitize the store every 30 minutes, we wash our hands every 30 minutes, wear different pairs of gloves for every activity we have, and we also wear sanitation masks,” Aguerre said.

These practices that they have employed within the store will ensure that the customer’s produce and groceries remain out of contact with infected surfaces.

Gabby Ausbrook, a 20-year-old University of Mississippi student and long time patron of Chicory Market was very pleased to learn of the measures Chicory Market is going to to ensure her and other patrons’ safety.

“The Chicory Market has been my go-to grocery store. The people there are extremely kind and very helpful and everything there is so good. The vegetables are all super fresh,” Ausbrook said. “I’m excited to try their new curbside pickup. I do all my main shopping there, so I’m not sure what I would’ve done without it.”

New customers do not need to worry about ordering from Chicory Market’s vast menu. Their Instagram page updates customers on what their selection is like that day – whether the special is roasted chicken or a Reuban sandwich. The grocery store is fully stocked and the staff is willing to walk you through the process.

“Some people know the store, some people may not,” says Aguerre. “We are more than glad to give them a run-through of everything that is available in the store.”

Although the pandemic has placed a grip on everyone’s collective lives, it has only tightened the bond between Chicory Market and its patrons.

“We realized just yesterday how grateful the community is with all of our efforts when we looked back at all the feedback we received on our Instagram posts,” Aguerre said. “We have just been overwhelmed with love.”

Instagram user, pitts_out4the_rebz, left a comment on their page saying, “I love this transparency thanks so much for still serving the community during this time!”

Her kind words are not alone. Another Instagram user, leigh_t4, left a comment saying “(Chicory Market) did such a GREAT job yesterday! Thank you for filling my order! Your staff did a fantastic job!”

Times may be tough but morale stays high among Oxford foodies thanks to the collective efforts of the Chicory Market staff. For more information on how to place an order or how to contact the Chicory Market, visit their Facebook page or their Instagram page, both under the usernames @chicorymarket, visit their website at www.chicorymarket.com, give them a call at 662-380-2550, and visit them for curbside pick up on County Road 101.

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