Cape Coral’s crowded cluster of grocery stores off Pine Island Road soon will be getting another player.
Sprouts Farmers Market is preparing to open Oct. 7 at 1800 Pine Island Road, at the southeast corner of Pine Island and Pondella roads in what most recently has been a makeshift Halloween super store and prior to that had been a tile outlet store.
It will be the second Sprouts to open in Lee County, as one in Estero opened in 2020 at 19990 S. Tamiami Trail. It will be the third in Southwest Florida with the first opening in February 2019 at 2224 Logan Blvd. in Naples.
Fort Myers is slated to get its first Sprouts in the third quarter of 2023 on a site to be announced later.
“What sets Sprouts apart is our produce,” said Lewis Palombo, general manager of the Estero store. “Our open-air feeling inside. We’re a farmer’s market open seven days a week.
“What sets us apart, too, is we have our bulk section. We have our vitamins and body care sections as well. Our deli and our meat department, it’s just absolutely amazing in here.”
Sprouts will join Publix, Target, Aldi and Farmer Joe’s as just some of the options along the Pine Island Road corridor, but Palombo didn’t want to talk about the competition.
“I’m so excited for all the members of the Cape Coral community and Southwest Florida and Florida in general,” Palombo said. “Every day is like a treasure hunt. You come in here and find quality items. And you find new items that you’ve never tried before.”
The Cape Coral store will be a new prototype for Sprouts as it will have a smaller footprint with less behind-the-scenes storage space, Palombo said. But it will be large enough to provide about 100 full- and part-time jobs.
Sprouts will have a virtual hiring event Aug. 12 and an in-person hiring event Aug. 23 at Crowne Plaza Fort Myers at Bell Tower.
“What’s really cool about this is our tags and our labeling and everything makes it really easy for our customers to live a healthy lifestyle,” Palombo said. “We do keto, paleo, plant-based, the whole nine yards. That’s really what sets Sprouts apart is that we’re here for the healthy living.”