The Arctic Sounder

New AC store promises to bring more fresh produce to Anaktuvuk Pass

A new store opened in Anaktuvuk Pass this month, promising to bring fresh produce to the village.

Alaska Commercial Company in partnership with Nunamiut Corporation opened the store on April 15 to sell general merchandise and such groceries as frozen meats, meat packs, produce and leafy greens, according to the AC’s press release. In the future, the store is considering offering some household and hunting supplies, said AC President Kyle Hill.

“I really love it, it’s going to really benefit our people and our Elders, especially since they hardly know how to order food online!” said resident Ashley Mekiana. “Lots of food we hardly saw in the last 3-4 years. I’m not very much a produce type, but I’m excited to see the fresh fruit, apples, strawberries and blueberries.”

“Thankful for AC for coming in and bringing some awesome grocery services and fresh produce, meats and all,” said Homer Mekiana, Ashley Mekiana’s uncle.

Nunamiut Corporation and AC started discussing a new store in the fall of 2023, and formal plans began in February, said AC President Kyle Hill. The new AC store is located in the same building as the former Nunamiut Corporation Store, Hill said. The company plans to invest around $1 million into the store over the next year to buy new refrigerators, shelves and heating and ventilation enhancements, and upgrade the interior and exterior, he said.

Homer Mekiana said he is looking forward to the changes.

“Our store has been in bad shape the past three to four years,” Homer Mekian said. The “grand opening was exciting for the village, they looked pretty busy from opening to closing.”


So far, AC hired three Anaktuvuk Pass residents, previously employed by the Nunamiut Corporation Store, and plans to hire at least three more, Hill said.

The company hopes that the store will provide a space for gatherings and events.

Alena Naiden

Alena Naiden writes about communities in the North Slope and Northwest Arctic regions for the Arctic Sounder and ADN. Previously, she worked at the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.