I recently moved into a new neighborhood. Not knowing it that well I went on an expedition, checking out all of the stores along the main strip. Between all of the used furniture stores, I mean antique shops, and all of the used clothing stores, I mean vintage, I found a small corner store that specialized in organic products.
Selling only organic produce and other foods made by independent producers, this was a corner store with a conscience. The thing that surprised me most was the size of it. The space was tiny, but it was filled to the roof with great products. I witnessed a steady stream of people browsing and buying. After making a purchase of organic milk I asked the woman behind the counter if she owned the store, she did. Luckily she was more than willing to answer my questions about owning such a store. She said that she believed that most people in the neighborhood wanted to eat organic food but couldn’t afford to do so with their limited budget.
“People in this neighborhood can’t afford to go to a grocery store that sells organic food and do a weekly shopping there. It’s too expensive for most of them, but here they drop by a few times a week and buy something small each time. The people who shop here don’t buy a lot, but they buy often.”
I asked her, as gently as possible, if the business is generating enough revenue for her to keep it afloat. Basically I wanted to know if she was losing money. She said that she makes a decent living. Meaning that she pays all of bills at the end of the month with enough left over to get by, just like most of us.
I have to say, although she seemed liked she really was into the organic food movement she wasn’t a fanatic about it. She didn’t seem to live and die with all of it. She’s content on making a living doing something that she enjoys. She asked me not to give out her name or the name of her shop. Personally I thought any sort of exposure, large or small, would be beneficial. She said that she was happy with how things were going and didn’t want to disturb anything. I think that I’ll become one of her regular customers. One who buys a bunch or organic carrots one day and organic apple cider the next. We all have to do our part.