At Earth's General Store we offer visitors information and products that will help them reduce their ecological and social impact on the planet and all inhabitants. We are a distributor of information and knowledge, encouraging people to consume less, consume wisely, consume locally, consume fairly and love lots more! We do this by offering items that have beneficial advantages - local, certified organic, Fair Trade Certified, in bulk (less packaging), water and energy efficiency products, information, and support to act! We are attempting to offer a way of life that is balanced and respectful of the planet and all its creatures. I know this sounds a little wishy washy but I believe that is our ultimate goal in life - do as little harm as possible and leave the world better than when we arrived. One of the intimate ways that we interact with the environment is through the food we eat. We have the power to choose food that has less impact on the environment, society and other beings. We can eat less meat, choose food that is grown locally and organically and to buy in bulk. In February 2010 Earth’s General Store moved and expand our inventory to include food products. We now offer fresh, packaged, chilled and frozen organic products. We are a real Health Food Store - offering healthy food for your body, your spirit and the planet. We continue to carry the products that we have offered the citizens of Edmonton since 1991 like worms for composting, animal free personal care products, and reusable menstrual products. We have the most experience of any store or organization in Edmonton on green lifestyle. If you want to help make the world a better place Earth’s General Store may be of great assistance to help you along the path.

"Best Sustainable Goods/Gift Store" Award by Vue Weekly Readers

I was just notified that we were awarded the "BEST SUSTAINABLE GOODS/GIFT STORE" from Vue Weekly readers.
 
Thank you everyone that has voted for us and submitted a response on their survey.
 
- Posted September 25th, 2015 

Equipment still being my bane!


Running a business is a balance – providing our customers with something they want, at a price that is fair and reasonable for them, in a convenient location, provide service when needed – while providing the business enough ‘profit’ to pay their staff a reasonable wage, pay their suppliers and landlords when needed, and to have a profit of time and energy to work on items that enrich their community.

Unfortunately I feel like I am failing our customers and a lot of it has to do with providing the services and products that people want. A large amount of this failing is being created by equipment failure. When we first opened it was refrigeration and now it is coffee roaster that we use to roast our in-house coffee and one of the point of sale (till) computers at the Downtown store.

Our coffee roaster has been down for over a week now and has cost quite a bit of money to repair but it finally looks like it is repaired. Neal is presently roasting lots of coffee to refill the bins at both store. We apologize for any stress this caused anyone.

Earth's General Store - Downtown Core's Community Food Store and Cafe!


Open for the downtown communities!

Despite what some people may think about downtown there are lots of people that live here. Thousands in fact. It is moving beyond just being an employment centre.

Several downtown businesses specifically cater to the business crowd and several focus on the visitors and people in the area – some both.  Some businesses close up when the business community exits the area. There are people that have needs after the 4:30/5:00 office hours. People that live in this area and are looking for good quality food for supper.

When we first opened downtown we were only open to 6pm as we tried to work out some of the systems that make a business work. We then extended our hours to service the downtown community - the people that live right here downtown. We extended our hours to show you that we know this and wish to be here for you. There was a person that wrote a Tweet to me about just this issue – not being able to find real food in the downtown core after 6pm. We are here to fill this need.

Extended Store Hours for Earth's General Store - WHYTE AVENUE

New expended hours at our Whyte Avenue store!

We are now going to open at 9am at the Whyte Avenue store. This will be the same weekday hours as our downtown store.

Monday through Friday 9am to 8pm, Saturday 9am to 6pm and Sunday 10am to 6pm. Please take advantage of this earlier opening so that the staff feel useful

Thanks!

- Posted September 8th, 2014

Deli Manager Employment Opportunity for EGS Downtown

Unfortunately we are going to loose our deli manager. London is Calling :)

Mithalee will be moving to London, UK to pursue more culinary arts training with a variety of food establishments. This will leave Earth's General Store without a Deli Manager.

Mithalee has done an excellent job of getting the deli up and running. She has been fundamental in developing the feel and flavours of the Earth's General Store deli and we greatly appreciate her gift to the store. Her presence and skills will be sorely missed.

Mithalee has provided the following description of the skills  that are needed for the person to possess to take on this position.

If you are interested please drop me a line or know someone that might be interested please forward them the link.

Update on the Downtown Location

Tomorrow marks our two weeks in business at our downtown location (10150 – 104th Street).

Tomorrow we will be having a sidewalk presence – samples from the deli and offering some organic vegetables and fruit for sale. We will not be offering products that are available elsewhere in the farmer's market.

When it was first announced about the store opening our second location in the downtown core we were quite worried by the overwhelming response on social media that we would not be able to service the people in this community. Then Sobeys closed their store down the street from our downtown location (see my blog on this). This added to the stress of being able to service the community.

Sobeys Closure - Possibly Good for Our Business but BAD for the Community

You may have heard that Sobeys on Jasper and 104th is slated to close at the end of July 2014. Check out the article in the Edmonton Journal. Here are my thoughts on it.

Many people have mentioned that with Sobeys closing that it should be good for business. Perhaps. But it is a great lost for the community.

Healthy and vibrant down towns should have grocery stores. It is where people live. There should be hardware stores, inexpensive eateries (not inexpensive fast food chains), places to sit and gather, lots of space to walk, ride and park a bicycle, schools, and entertainment. But it is grocery stores that provide the daily or weekly needs of those living and working in the downtown core.

Earth's General Store - An Update and Ramblings About our Business Model

The other week when a regular customer heard that we were opening up a second store he expressed a word of caution. He said that many businesses fail when they expand to a second store.

I am quite conservative when it comes to business. I take a slow and steady path and that path is not leading to financial windfalls or a certain return on investment. I am looking to make the business financially sustainable – that is not loosing money and making enough that we can weather slow months (the summer months).

This second store is being financed by a loan of $300,000 from the Social Enterprise Fund. Earth's General Store is the first 'for-profit' business they have provided financial support to but they recognize the social benefits and involvement that the store represents. I was VERY flattering that I did not have to 'sell' them on this aspect since our reputation preceded us and we were recognized as a social enterprise business.

Earth's General Store Second Location

Just a quick note about a new development.

A few years ago a local organic grower (Vincen Halwa) started an organic food store downtown on 104th Street called Pangaea Market. Things didn't go very well for this new business and it closed last year.

I have been thinking about opening a second location and had my heart set on it being up in the north east – probably around 118th avenue. I wanted to put our store in an area where we could offer excellent foods to people living in a 'food desert'.

I knew about the closure of Pangaea and knew that they had equipment (freezers, coolers and shelving). And thought I could pick it up for a good price for our second location. When I contacted the person responsible for the space he suggested I lease the space with all the equipment in place. This appealed to me. I would help to reduce the waste associated with the removal of the equipment, the redecoration, etc. and I would provide an outlet for good organic food in the downtown core.

So the negotiation began.

New Items at Earths General Store

Earth’s General Store continuously expands our selection of Organic, Fair Trade, Vegan/Vegetarian and Raw Food items. This month I am very pleased to let people know we have some excellent products. Some of them are new to not only our store but to Edmonton (such as bulk organic olive oil, bulk organic sesame oil, bulk organic almond meal).