Some other grocery stores, including nearby East Dallas’ Central Market, Whole Foods and Sprouts, also carry organic and locally grown products, but most are the size of traditional grocery stores, and some are also part of national chains. They do a great job, and the city patronizes them.
Green Grocer plans to bring a unique blend of fresh, straight from the farm goods, dairy, and other locally produced items with the small-town feel that nearby businesses, households and pedestrians can embrace. Cassie Green and husband/business partner Gary Stephens are co-founders of Green Grocer. They created their business in the West Town area of Chicago in 2008. Green explained that a traditional Walmart store usually has about 100,000 square feet. Green Grocer will occupy 4,000 square feet of space at 3614 Greenville Ave., across from Gloria’s.
Their plan is to create an intimate, friendly environment. They intend to use the same business model as their Chicago store. While they have a house in the M Streets, Green said that she and Stephens will alternate time between the Dallas and Chicago stores.
“We love this neighborhood and will enjoy being in East Dallas,” she said.
Green Grocer will stock more than 3,000 grocery items. About two-thirds of the store’s vendors will be local.
Green Grocer will pair with Dallas-based Artizone.com, an online shopping community that features delivery from a wide selection of local artisan shops and food businesses, with Empire Baking, Oak Cliff Coffee and Mozzarella Company being just a few.
Green’s background is in corporate America. At the root of her career change is her love of food and cooking.
“Our interest is creating relationships with customers. We hire people who love great food and cooking. It’s so much fun when vendors, staff and customers get to know each other,” she said. “Our team will be highly professional and knowledgeable, and will look forward to coming to work every day.”
Green added, “We intend to be a ‘one-stop shop’ to pick up everyday grocery items, lunch to go, ingredients for a fresh and delicious dinner or a gift basket for a friend, all featuring organically grown, locally produced food and specialty items.” Asked whom Green Grocer expects to attract, Green said that, in the Chicago store, the average age range is 26 to 45, equally men and women. Customers’ love of cooking is significant. “Most of our customers are also interested in social justice,” Green said. “They’re grateful that we support local farmers, including some very small growers, which we will offer in Dallas.” She added: “Customers fall in love with our specialty products. They also enjoy the ability to get in and out more quickly than the big supermarkets.”
According to Green, the Chicago store is active and involved with the community, and especially with area schools. She added that she plans to build the same kind of relationships in Dallas. “Being part of the community is key with us. We love it in lower Greenville and East Dallas.” Green continued: “The people we have met in Dallas have been so cordial and welcoming. We’re just excited to get those doors open. We hope everyone can share in our excitement.”
Texans being a proud bunch, Green said she has enjoyed the warm hospitality and positive reception to keeping money in the local community. “Texans are so loyal that I hope to build a loyal customer base that will trade with us forever!” she quipped.
White Rock Lake Weekly offers a Texas peach to our new neighbors, Cassie and Gary, wishing you the best with your new Dallas Green Grocer.