Shoppers pinch pennies at dollar store

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Kyle Dishman said he can’t afford to shop at the grocery store anymore. Instead he goes to Dollar General, where he can make $40 stretch into a week’s worth of groceries and the occasional can of motor oil for his car.

He sticks with pasta, frozen pizza and canned vegetables, fully aware that “any food you can buy for only $1 is not the greatest for you.” But Dishman said that prices have gone up so much that he’s started rationing his food.

“When you only have a certain amount to spend, it’s like, why not just go to the dollar store?” he said.

A growing number of Americans are relying on dollar stores for everyday needs, especially groceries, as the coronavirus pandemic drags into its 18th month. Chains such as Dollar General and Dollar Tree are reporting blockbuster sales and profits, and proliferating so quickly that some U.S. cities want to limit their growth. The 1,650 dollar stores expected to open this year represent nearly half of all…

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