Future looks fresh for budget grocers as new shops open in city

·2 min read

Brace yourselves Winnipeggers, you’ll now have a pick from six different FreshCo outlets in the city.

Today, Tran Nagpal and his team of over 100 employees are opening up a new franchise store on Sargent Avenue at Sherbrook Street. And come April 1, another FreschCo will open at Pembina Highway and McGillivray Boulevard.

“FreshCo right now is growing because of the customers’ need during the pandemic,” Nagpal said in an interview. “What we have is the lowest prices with the best and freshest quality food — it really is what people want, especially in a downtown location like mine.”

Nagpal’s franchise comes after a Henderson Highway and Kimberly Avenue location opened on March 5, and another that opened March 11 at Niakwa Village on Alpine Avenue. Two FreshCos were already operating before these four new ones; one on McPhillips Street at Jefferson Avenue, and the other on Regent Avenue at Lagimodiere Boulevard.

“This is my first-ever franchise,” said Nagpal, who’s a newcomer to the city from Saskatchewan. “I wanted to be an accountant and then after I started working in retail, I just kind of fell in love.”

Featured products at Nagpal’s FreshCo location will include an assortment of local brands like City Rye Bread, Perfect Perogies and Bothwell Cheese.

“It’s important we make sure people are shopping local in Winnipeg,” he said. “And that’s why I’ve tried to partner with as many local brands as possible, and do as much as I can to promote their amazing products.”

To commemorate the opening, the Sargent and Sherbrook location has also donated $2,500 to the Bear Clan Patrol, an organization that works with community members to address homelessness, addiction and mental health issues.

Temur Durrani, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Winnipeg Free Press