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Snack attack

Rachel Nokadlak
Northern News Services

Inuvik (July 15/05) - If you're in need of a snack, any time of the day or night, Munchies is open and ready to serve.

Hussien Mustafa, co-owner of the new 24-hour convenience store, is happy that his business is finally on the go.

"We've been working on the renovations for about two and a half months, but had thought about opening up a 24-hour store for about six months," said Mustafa. "With the town investing so much money into Inuvik and the new hotels here, I felt that Inuvik needed a 24-hour store."

The store has only been open since Friday, July 8th, but has already attracted plenty of attention from Inuvik residents.

Along with the standard junk food like pop, nachos and candy, the store offers a few things not available at other convenience stores, like iced cappucinos. Big ideas

Mustafa said they get their products from a few different suppliers. The store employs five part-time staff.

"We've got some big ideas but for now we're taking it slow and just focusing on what we've got to do right now. One thing we're looking forward to is getting some new slushies in about 6 months, so we'll have orange and apple juice slushies, that's going to be nice." Mustafa said.

For now, the new convenience store offers staple foods such as bread and milk but does not yet have anything like fresh fruit or vegetables.

"If you run out of bread or milk and need it for breakfast for your kids, then you can just come on down," said Mustafa.

"But Munchies is just a convenience store so we don't want to buy a bunch of fruit and just let it sit there and go to waste, Northmart is right across the road."

Inuvik's nutritionist, Eileen Kabaroff, says junk food is OK once in a while but offers poor nutrition and not the kind of energy that a person's body needs.

"I call it 'sometimes-food" because if you call pop, chips, and chocolate junk food, it makes the person feel bad, and makes them think that they're a bad person because they're eating bad food. I would like to see stores promote healthy foods, but it seems like all they want is business," said Kabaroff.

"So many people don't know what they're doing to their bodies when they don't get enough healthy food. How many know that drinking one can of pop a day increases the risk of getting diabetes by 60 per cent?"

Kabaroff adds that exercising may burn calories but still won't replace the nutrients one misses by eating too much 'sometimes-food.'