Race

Grocery Chain Accused of Racism Over Quality of Asparagus

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UNIVERSITY CITY • A dried-out batch of asparagus has touched off a debate about racial discrimination, grocery stores and the role of citizen-led commissions.

It started in May when resident David Olander was perusing the produce section of the University City Schnucks. He noticed the asparagus weren't resting in a tray of water.

"It was just sitting there dried out," said Olander, a member of the city's human relations commission. …

Olander admitted to being in an "ornery mood" the day he visited the store. "I just felt like stirring it up a little bit, letting them know that somebody cares," he said, according to the recording.