Longboat Key Publix gets a makeover

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LONGBOAT KEY - A Publix supermarket has reopened on Longboat Key, but with some changes.

The grocer cut the red ribbon just before 8 am Thursday.

The store closed last April to be converted into a prototype grocery store. Some of the new features include prepared food and organic and specialty items.

The grocery chain says it is the first of its kind in southwest Florida and only the second in the state.

During the ribbon cutting, more than a dozen fair food supporters picketed near the store, because they say Publix has refused to participate in the Fair Food Program. It’s a partnership among Florida tomato pickers, other farmers and buyers that make sure workers are paid and treated fairly.

Publix says they are not interested in getting in the middle of its suppliers affairs and their prices are already fair. More picketers will be back out there this Sunday at 2 pm.