NESS CITY — Anyone looking to feed large groups of people in the Ness City area has a new option for bulk supplies.
Wholesale supplier Main Street Food and Supply celebrates its grand opening today at 117 Main after opening for business Wednesday.
Owners April Braun and her mother JoAnn Epperson have some food and other supplies on the shelves, but they’re hoping customers will tell them what else to stock their shelves with.
“We’re going to bring stuff in as people ask,” Epperson said.
She’s no stranger to the food industry, having run a wholesale supply store in Ness City about 15 years ago. She also previously owned the Cactus Club restaurant.
Braun is the main force behind opening the business now. A Tennessee native, she married into a Ness County family and graduated from Fort Hays State University with a criminal justice degree. She’s worked in case management in the past, and has helped her mother out at the convenience store she now manages.
“I’m kind of a housewife, so it was to give me something other than running around while they chop silage and getting parts,” she said with a laugh.
“I don’t have a full inventory yet because I’m wanting to hear what people actually want,” she said.
“We don’t process anything, so there won’t be meats,” she said. “We do repackage a few things to condense it down a little bit, but it’s still technically in bulk quantity.”
On the shelves already are bulk-sized cans of nacho cheese, green beans and corn, plus paper products and plastic cutlery.
There’s also a selection of canned goods like salsa, quail eggs and habanero pickles and olives made for Main Street Food and Supply by Gourmet Gardens, a Texas supplier. Braun has sold those from her home in the past.
“Those habanero pickles I always sell by the case. The spicier the better. These aren’t extremely spicy but they have enough where people seem to love it,” she said.
A row of refrigerator/freezers also contains bulk frozen foods like chicken strips, mozzarella sticks, onion rings, french fries, egg rolls, fried pickles, cookie dough and pies.
Interest in the business has been growing through word of mouth, Braun said. She expects the bulk of her business to come from restaurants, and those organizing church or school suppers as well as celebrations such as graduation.