Local store hasn’t had milk in stock for months in some locations

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. – For some time now we’ve been telling you about Rochester’s food deserts, and the problem people are having getting access to fresh fruits, and vegetables. You can now add milk to the list. News10NBC talked to one local leader that says the City is working on the problem.

Several Rochester Family Dollar stores are out of milk, because the store lost its vendor. Customers tell us it’s been a problem for at least two months now.

“A lot of babies really need milk. Some people don’t have rides. What if someone catches a cab to Family
Dollar thinking they’re getting milk, and there’s no milk?” said Michelle Montgomery.

Milk normally fills the shelves at the Family Dollar store located on Lyell Avenue. A note in the dairy section apologizes for the lack of it. It goes on to say that their supplier has stopped making milk deliveries to that part of the city. Some people blame it on crime. Justin Morris, President of Arc of Justice Rochester rejects that notion.

“If you are bold enough to make that statement, and say that oh because of crime we don’t have milk, then you are insinuating that the people that need the milk are associated with the crime, and that in itself is a major problem,” said Morris.

The City of Rochester is trying to eliminate its food deserts through its Healthy Food Access Program.

“The City is taking a leadership role in making sure that we can change for the better when it comes to bringing food, healthy foods to our residents,” said Eric Frisch, Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Neighborhood and Business Development.

Last year Rochester received $5 million from the American Rescue Plan. We asked Frisch if those dollars have been distributed yet, especially to attract more grocery stores to low-income communities. Frisch says not yet.

“We’re going to be very diligent in how we get these funds out to make sure they’re being used wisely, and maximize their utility to our residents,” said Frisch.

News10NBC reached out to Family Dollar’s Corporate Office with a set of questions many people are asking about them selling milk again. We’re still waiting for answers.