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Earl's Grocery to close down later this month, owner says

Earl's Grocery co-founder Bonnie Warford said despite a new business model and some improvement, they couldn't "make it make sense anymore."
Credit: Adobe Stock Images

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Another popular small business in Charlotte is shutting down for good, as Earl's Grocery in Elizabeth will close its doors permanently later this month. 

The store, which was founded by sisters Bonnie Warford and Tricia Maddrey in 2014, just wasn't profitable despite a recent uptick in sales. Earl's transitioned to takeout only last summer after the sisters were forced to shut down the iconic Carpe Diem Restaurant after 30 years.

"We had turned the ship," Warford said. "It was getting better but it still wasn't enough."

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Earl's Grocery faced many challenges after switching to takeout only, including supply chain shortage and online ordering. 

"We kept pushing and working through it all," Warford said. "But there is not a lot of room for small indie markets in the grocery industry."

 The kitchen at Earl's will be open through July 17. The store will continue to offer some of Carpe Diem's most popular items, like the buttermilk fried chicken breast. Online ordering and to-go are still available, as well as limited indoor seating. 

All grocery items and wine will be discounted with the store closing for good on July 24. 

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