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Fresh Thyme Farmers Market opened its third Missouri store Wednesday in Kirkwood, and the organic grocer is scouting for additional store locations in the St. Louis area.

The produce-centric grocer’s newest store, at 1018 North Kirkwood Road, has 95 employees. In 2015, Kirkwood officials approved a 0.5 percent sales tax for a Community Improvement District to fund improvements on the property.

The Kirkwood Fresh Thyme store has 28,821 square feet, making it about half the size of most supermarkets.

Backed financially by Grand Rapids, Mich.-based grocer Meijer, Fresh Thyme’s first St. Louis area store opened in Fairview Heights in 2014. Since its founding in 2012, Chicago-based Fresh Thyme has grown to 53 locations, including Missouri stores in O’Fallon and Town and Country.

CEO Chris Sherrell said more Fresh Thyme stores are planned for the St. Louis area and throughout Missouri.

One of the new stores will be on the site of the former Tesson Ferry Branch of the St. Louis County Library in south St. Louis County, at 9920 Lin Ferry Drive in Green Park.

Another store will open in St. Peters, in the Jungermann Road and Highway 94 area.

Both stores will open in early 2018.

The company plans to ultimately have between 100 and 150 stores in the Midwest.

“We have several more stores coming in the St. Louis area over the next year or so,” Sherrell told the Post-Dispatch. “We’re looking all over the state too, not just in St. Louis.”

The company is expanding its private label, or store brand, merchandise.

“Private label has grown to more than 1,000 items, and that will triple or quadruple over the next few years,” Sherrell said.

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