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A Greater Grain

Job coaches Nick Raabe and Genie Webb train to use the cashier's station Feb. 29, 2012 inside A Greater Grain Gluten-Free Store, located inside Westgate Mall, 4811 Washington Ave.

RACINE — With the proliferation of gluten-free choices in grocery stores, Careers Industries announced Tuesday it will close Greater Grain Gluten-Free Goods and move the training program to a larger store.

Careers opened Greater Grain in early 2012 at Westgate Square, 4901 Washington Ave., anchored by Shopko. The store specialized in gluten-free and natural foods and was also a training ground for Careers’ clients with cognitive and developmental disabilities.

Careers also provides work and training for people with disabilities by doing fulfillment work for area businesses.

The paid training program at the 1,000-square-foot Greater Grain store has been successful and will be moved to the Piggly Wiggly grocery store at 5201 Washington Ave., Careers announced. Greater Grain will shut its doors after a product closeout sale that starts Monday.

Twenty participants have gone through the retail training program at Greater Grain, Careers Executive Director Joe Greene stated in a news release: “With the guidance of a job coach, participants interested in pursuing retail work have learned how to greet customers, answer general merchandise questions, stock shelves, take inventory and check out customers.”

Careers said Greater Grain “filled a significant need for more gluten-free offerings for area residents suffering from celiac disease or gluten intolerance, or those who are simply looking to eat healthier.”

Since Greater Grain opened, gluten-free inventory has expended rapidly at new and existing area groceries.”

According to Careers, moving the program to Piggly Wiggly, a full-service store, will increase the scope of training provided by offering a wider variety of duties and experiences for participants.

Greene said the partnership with Piggly Wiggly also further integrates Careers’ retail employment training program into the community.

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Reporter

Michael "Mick" Burke covers business and the Village of Sturtevant. He is the proud father of two daughters and owner of a fantastic, although rug-chewing, German shepherd dog.

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