The Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation (ACFN) plans to open its own grocery store in the remote northern Alberta community of Fort Chipewyan.
When the K'ai Taile Market opens in the spring, it will compete directly with the community’s single existing store, run by the North West Company. The ACFN hopes that will give residents a break on food prices, which are notoriously high in Fort Chipewyan. The community has to stockpile food during the winter, when it is accessible by ice road from Fort McMurray, 280 km distant.
An article in Fort McMurray Today cites some of the grocery prices Fort Chipewyan residents are up against: $19 for packaged chicken breasts; $10 for a carton of strawberries; $13 for seedless grapes (of “questionable” quality).
In addition to a break on pricing, council members hope the competition will promote healthier food options.