Local business provides ‘cart retrieval service’ for grocery stores

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Have you been to a grocery store recently and wondered where all the carts are?

A KOIN 6 News viewer contacted us regarding a situation involving a shortage of carts at Oregon City Fred Meyer. She couldn’t find any to use – and the store’s management told her that people in nearby homeless camps had taken them from the store.

Management said they lost 130 carts. How do they get them back?

According to Fred Meyer, the store uses a “cart retrieval service” of Northwest Food Merchants.

Many grocery stores across the state will use Northwestern Food Merchants, which aims to pick up carts within 72 hours of request.

The organization says Oregon City Fred Meyer is particularly hard hit.

“We have noticed an increase in lost and stolen carts over the past two years, particularly in the Oregon City area with the rise of new homeless camps,” a Northwestern Food spokeswoman said in part. Merchants. “The pressures from these camps have presented new challenges for the recovery of the carts – both in terms of sanitation and safety.”

Call the Northwestern Food Merchants toll-free 24-hour hotline at 888.552.2787. You can also report missing carts and find more information at their website here.