The Fresh Market tells customers no guns in their stores

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - The Fresh Market is telling its customers that it doesn't want them carrying guns into its stores.

The Greensboro-based chain has issued a statement saying it wants to "ensure a welcoming environment where our customers and employees feel safe, and treat one another with kindness and respect while shopping and working."

The Charlotte Observer reports ( the activist group Moms Demand Action said it had gathered nearly 4,000 signatures across North Carolina to support what they call a "gun sense policy."

Fresh Market has 20 stores in North Carolina.

Moms Demand Action has also asked Matthews-based Harris Teeter to implement gun bans in its stores, delivering petitions to Harris Teeter's headquarters last year.

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