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Newton Hy-Vee to offer healthier new food options

Published: Monday, Sept. 9, 2013 11:29 a.m. CDT • Updated: Monday, Sept. 9, 2013 11:51 a.m. CDT
(Submitted Photo)
Newton's Hy-Vee will be getting a Health Market and will offer organic and gluten-free items.

Newton will soon have options for healthier foods at the local Hy-Vee.

Store Director Jason Crocker said the newest addition to Hy-Vee will arrive in roughly three weeks. The new aisles will have organic and gluten-free foods for customers. The store will be re-arranging some to make room for the healthier options.

“From aisle two clear over to the paper aisle (will be used for healthier options), and we’re even getting rid of an aisle of frozen food,” Crocker said.

Crocker said the decision was made to offer Newton healthier choices and to serve Hy-Vee’s growing gluten-free customer base.

“It’s growing,” Crocker said. “One of my managers over there, she always felt like she was sick all the time. Years and years and years went by, and she just accepted it. She went to a doctor and found out she was allergic to wheat.”

Once the health market is finished, Crocker said he would be very comfortable saying Hy-Vee has one of the largest gluten-free selections in town, if not the largest.

“That’s probably the biggest reason for the Health Market. I think people are conscientious now and getting more and more health conscientious and it’s just time to grab onto that growing clientele,” Crocker said.

Crocker said the store won’t be removing any of its popular items from the shelves, but if customers don’t see items they want, they can request them.

“The blueprint doesn’t give it justice. That’s at the front of the store right now,” Crocker said.

Crocker said he’s been working for Hy-Vee since he was 14 and that he likes living in Newton. Crocker also said his family is a very health-conscientious family. He said the Health Market will give Newton more choices in healthy foods.

“I think it will give them the options to do so,” Crocker said. “Whether they do it, it’s their choice. Their independent choice.”

Crocker said the goal of the new Health Market is to serve the customers. He also said he wants Hy-Vee to have the options of a big-town retail store but the feel of small town Iowa.

“It’s kind of like the liquor store being in its own little corner,” Crocker said. “If that doesn’t appeal to you, don’t go in it.”

Staff writer Dave Hon may be contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 425, or at dhon@newtondailynews.com.