by Carissa Leventis-Cox
I love going to my local community health food store, 14 Carrot Whole Foods, for four wonderful reasons.
14 Carrot Serves Its Local Community
One of the best things they do, in my humble opinion, is their bi-weekly produce sale. I hear mothers come in and talk to each other all the time. ”This place is even better than Walmart on Thursdays and Sundays from 1 – 5. All produce is 30% off! And it’s all organic or local!” Indeed, a lot of its produce comes from farms nearby, like City Roots, or are grown by people who work there, like Don’s tomatoes. They also allow farms in the area to use their space as a drop-off for their CSA programs, making it so convenient for shoppers.
14 Carrot is Eco-Conscious
Jim helps me bag my groceries every week and often talks about recycling, reduce and reuse. Ed, the owner, is very environment-conscious and is passionate about decreasing his business’s carbon footprint. They are a certified GREEN business.
14 Carrot Focuses on Health
And for the nutrition-conscious like me, shopping at 14 Carrot is heaven. When Karen Ranzi, author of Creating Healthy Children Through Attachment Parenting and Raw Foods, visited and gave a talk at 14 Carrot, she remarked that we have more raw food items available to us in Lexington, SC than in her own local health shop in New Jersey! Indeed, the people who work at 14 Carrot are very knowledgeable about what they do. Kathy, also a health food minister for Hallelujah Acres, is savvy about all things raw vegan and has helped turn me on, and so many other people in the community, to eating more raw foods. I could also talk to Lou for hours learning about all things raw primal (raw milk, raw cheese, raw yoghurt, raw butter, raw meats) and local products as well (meats and dairy). Furthermore, because of the staff and the quality of foods on display, my son is introduced to HEALTH foods at a young age! This nutrition education is priceless.
14 Carrot is a Neighbor
Most of all, I really love going to 14 Carrots because it feels like going to a neighbor’s house for a get-together every time I visit. My son knows most of the people who work there by name. He plays rough with Mr. Don, sticks out his tongue at Mr. Tristan (ugh! but at least Tristan does it back), shows Ms. Lisa his Michael Jackson moves, has mini-conversations with Ms. La Toya, asks Mr. Lou for a smoothie and gives Ms. Song a kiss. I bump into friends all the time and I meet other like-minded shoppers who love healthy food. A few weeks ago, I was surprised when Chris, a white guy who eats cooked food, taught me, an Asian raw foodie, how to make kimchi, a traditional Korean fermented food!
Yes, 14 Carrots brings grocery shopping to another level. We love going there, and anyone who loves organic, local and health foods will too. 14 Carrot Whole Foods takes its mission as a local health food shop seriously and passionately. As a community, we cannot do without!