Just launched, The Raw Store, created by Rebecca Freer and her partner Simon Hoeksma, is a local, organic, sustainable, fair food community that offers members the opportunity to receive organic goods at cost price. A unique proposition as, on average, the mark up for organic goods is around 40%, but can even be up to 100% on specialist items.
Rebecca was fed up with spending so much on good produce and, sure she wasn't the only one who felt this way, the idea for The Raw Store was born. Rebecca and Simon quit their corporate jobs and sold their house to take on this joint venture, and they haven't looked back. Simon did the fit out for their Thornbury store, and in true sustainable style, they repurposed items from a cheese and wine shop that was closing down in Abbotsford.
The Raw Store stocks a full groceries range including fresh produce, meat, household and personal items. They are also looking to stock a selective range of wine, beer and cider once their liquor license has been approved. There is no added sugar and no GMO's in any of the food products, and no harmful preservatives or additives in their non-food products either; the Raw Store is completely committed to their simple philosophy of everything being organic, sustainable, and fair.
Here it's all about locally produced, certified organic, hand selected products; everything that The Raw Store sells has been tried and tested by Rebecca's family, so they know for a fact what they're selling is delicious, healthy and awesome. The Raw Store is totally dedicated to sustainable practice, from the products they sell to how they are packaged. Another interesting thing to note about The Raw Store is that they only stock one brand per item for all of their available products. The reasoning behind this is simple: you don't need choice when you have outstanding quality.
So how can you get involved? Firstly you'll need to become a member, which you can either do by being endorsed by an already existing member or from Rebecca and Simon themselves. You can choose between a Full Membership, Food Membership or Vegan Membership, depending on your personal requirements.
Essentially members pay an initial fee to join, and then you pay what Rebecca pays by purchasing directly from the farmers and other organic food producers. You place your order online via The Raw Store website, and collect your order and pay for it at their bricks and mortar store in Thornbury (the store holds minimal product at any time to reduce wastage). Right now, The Raw Store are offering Early Bird membership that will give early adopters a 20% discount off the annual membership fee. If you're committed to sustainable practice, a healthy lifestyle and wish to support a local business for the best bang for your buck, The Raw Store could be exactly what you've been searching for.
Image credit: Michelle Jarni, The Urban List.