South LA corner stores try to get healthy

Oaks Jr market

Oak’s Jr. Market in Jefferson Park is undergoing a market conversion.

There’s not a lot of merchandise on the shelves at Oak’s Jr. Market these days. The refrigerators along the wall keep some beers and sodas cool. A shelf stores canned chili and Aunt Jemima syrup. But the shelves below the sign that reads “Fresh Produce” sit vacant, waiting to be filled with fruits and vegetables.

Gus Harris Jr., the store’s owner, has been slimming down his merchandise in preparation for big changes. Within the next few months, this modest shop on the corner of Jefferson and Fifth Avenue in Jefferson Park will begin a transformation into a healthier version of its current self. Harris keeps a copy of the plans for the store’s redesign right behind the counter. [Read more…]