Charleston is the epitome of a bustling Southern town – with plenty of charm to boot. Unfortunately, beyond the picturesque window displays on King Street, and the wonderful restaurants dotting the historic district, poverty is a reality for many of the city’s lifelong residents. In the mid-1990s North Charleston suffered an economic blow when the Naval Base shut down. Not long after that, the area’s only grocery store went out of business, leaving a food shortage in its wake.
In 2015, Limehouse Produce, which provides conventional row crops, local specialties, fresh herbs, and dairy products to Charleston-area restaurants, purchased the former site of the Charleston Naval Exchange building. There, they created a food hub where locally owned businesses and non-profits can have additional tenant space at reduced rental rates. Additionally, they are building a produce distribution and cold storage facility to further extend their community impact.
Through our partnership with Limehouse Produce, a $9 million investment has brought jobs to close to 150 local residents – enabling these individuals to provide for their families in ways they weren’t able to imagine even a year ago. Additionally, because of Limehouse’s commitment to community, millions of pounds of food have been donated to area food banks, restoring access to fresh, healthy food for so many. By purchasing the old Naval building, which had been out of use for almost two decades, Limehouse Produce has brought jobs and hope to one of the city’s most impoverished areas.
“Limehouse Produce is proud to have accompanied Charleston, and particularly the local restaurants, in the extraordinary success of our beautiful city. We are very excited about the renovation of the Navy Exchange Building and the construction of our new facility, which will not only position us to serve our customer base better, but will also be an asset to our neighborhood.”
– Andrea Limehouse, vice president, Limehouse Produce