Some customers drive 20 miles to shop at Mounce Grocery and Johnny Mounce does all he can to keep them coming back.
“When you have customers like that, you do all you can for them,” said Mounce. “I’ve always said we want to treat you so good you feel guilty going somewhere else.”
So what makes penny pinchers spend $3-a-gallon gasoline to drive to Houlka?
“Our meat is some of the best around and our butchers cut it fresh, on site, every day,” said Mounce. “We’ve also got a brand new produce case and we’ve always offered top quality fruits and vegetables.”
And this in a rural community where people have their own gardens and know quality produce.
Mounce said his grocery also offers a wide variety of canned, boxed, bottled and bagged items on carefully cleaned and constantly stocked aisles
“I tell people if we don’t have it, tell me what it is and I’ll get it for you,” said Mounce. “There is no reason to go to the big box store way down the road. We can have it for you right here in Houlka.”
Mounce said his commitment to customers service and satisfaction goes back to the days when he had a store on the Square in Houlka.
“I bought the store on the square in 1981 and bought this store from Mr. R.A. Easley in 1987,” said Mounce. “This community has been good to me through the years. I’m blessed.”
Mounce said he has served some families since 1981.
“I’ve got grandchildren of some of my first customers shopping in this store,” said Mounce. “I’ve got customers I used to give candy to that now I’m giving their children candy.”
Mounce said he also expects that dedication to customers and customer service from all of his employees. He pointed out many have worked at Mounce Grocery for years.
“A lot of people have worked here and it was their first job,” said Mounce. “My store manager, Beverly Diaz, has been here 28 years. Houlka is a good place to live and work.”
And Mounce is a champion of Houlka and Chickasaw County, supporting local schools, civic events and church functions when he can.
“I can’t tell you how much fun it has been to provide a service and turn a profit at it,” said Mounce. “This business demands a lot out of you, but when you’ve got customers like I’ve got, it also gives a lot back.”
Local Focus is a regular business feature of the Chickasaw Journal. Locally owned businesses wanting to be included in Local Focus should call the Chickasaw Journal at 456-3771.