Joseph Na looks over fresh produce at Green’s Food Market, 255 S. George St. The store in George Street Commons will focus on healthy foods,
Joseph Na looks over fresh produce at Green's Food Market, 255 S. George St. The store in George Street Commons will focus on healthy foods, essentials and fresh cut deli meats with an emphasis on providing quality food and produce to neighboring residents. (John A. Pavoncello — jpavoncello@yorkdispatch.com)

Sharee Riggs walked to the deli counter in a new York City market and asked for a container of fresh fruit.

"This isn't something you get to do every day," said the 28-year-old downtown resident.

Normally the mother of two would have to walk several blocks to C-Town Supermarkets, but the reopened and revamped Green Food Market is just a stoplight away from her house, Riggs said.

Green Food Market on Tuesday held its grand opening at 255 S. George St., and Riggs said it's just what the city needs.

"We don't have a lot of places down here to get good food or healthy food. This place has a lot more than just candy bars," she said.

Green’s Food Market,
Green's Food Market, (John A. Pavoncello — jpavoncello@yorkdispatch.com)

The market, which previously operated at 247 S. George St. from 2002 to 2012, sells fresh produce, typical grocery store items and has a full-service deli in the back of the store. Several hot and cold foods, sandwiches, subs, paninis, burritos and more are sold in the deli, which also has a catering menu.

It's a bigger selection than Green Food Market served in its old store, which closed two years ago to make way for the George Street Commons.

The housing project was largely funded through the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, and it's the first time the agency was involved with a mixed-use project in the state, said state Rep. Kevin Schreiber, D-York City.


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But the project — which is the largest geothermal project in the city — had to be a mix of commercial and retail development, he said.

At the corner of South George Street and East College Avenue, the location is the "segue into the central business district," Schreiber said.

Access is key: It's also a place where store owners Min Heay Na and Myung Goun Na are creating accessibility to healthy food.

"Accessibility is the key. We know we have Central Market downtown, but it closes at 2 (p.m.) and isn't open every day. This (Green Food Market) is easy access to healthy food. As many points of access we have, the better," said JoeAnne Ward-Cottrell, health educator at WellSpan and secretary of the York County Food Alliance.

The store will also accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits and checks from Women, Infants and Children (WIC), and that will be beneficial to local residents, she said.

Local lawmakers are aware of food deserts and the problem with accessing fresh food in urban areas, Schreiber said.

He and York City Mayor Kim Bracey said they are happy to see a small business providing access to healthy food downtown.

"It's small business that really makes our community a neighborhood," Schreiber said.

The Na family wants to make available the "freshest of produce, the healthiest of food," said Jong Young Na, son of the owners.

The store is open from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday and closed Sunday, he said.

—Reach Candy Woodall at cwoodall@yorkdispatch.com.