" The man feeding a remote Alaska town with a Costco card and a ship " - The Hustle

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" The man feeding a remote Alaska town with a Costco card and a ship " - The Hustle

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The advent of COVID-19 has made it more difficult for isolated, rural communities to maintain access to basic necessities such as food, water, and personal care products. In an article for the Hustle, journalist Zachary Crokett recounts the story of a Gustavus, Alaska grocer named Toshua Parker, who has taken it upon himself to supply the needs of his fellow townspeople in a time of crisis. Through the use of a shipping freighter, business connections, and a trusty Costco membership card, Parker has mostly succeeded in supplying the community's consumer needs and has made his business, Toshco, an economic pillar of Gustavus.

The success of Parker's small, rural business in the face of COVID-19, according to Crockett, is representative of a "renaissance" of rural businesses, which are an important component of supplying a town's consumer needs. Without these businesses, isolated rural communities such as Gustavus would have a harder time enduring the pandemic relative to communities with robust economic centers.

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This item was submitted on November 19, 2020 by Carlos Castro using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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