FALLING WATERS, W.Va. (WDVM) — It’s called the dollar store boom: Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar — they seem to be everywhere. With the pandemic over the past year, they have become increasingly popular since so many in the workforce lost their jobs or had their hours cut back.

With so many households now on really tight budgets and inflation on the rise, these stores are growing by leaps and bounds, especially in low-income neighborhoods.

“I like their snacks. Their snacks is a lot cheaper than other stores. I just feel that I save a good bit of money by coming here,” one dollar store shopper, Linda Pyles, said.

Critics of the boom in dollar stores say, however, they create “food deserts” by only serving processed food and no fresh produce in low-income communities.