Love letter from BriarPatch Board President

From Richard Drace

Richard Drace

I’ve lost love and don’t know where to find it! –my all-time favorite Police Blotter item. Probably the caller(s) just wanted to mess with the dispatcher. But the lament could apply to most of us at some time in our lives. So this month our Vine theme is a suggestion that one place to find love – and share it – is at the BriarPatch.

Yet even as I write this, I feel a bit sheepish, since I’m one who generally dislikes assigning major human emotions to commercial products. No, I don’t believe in a Buick, and no, love is not what makes my Subaru a Subaru. But I also have a highly confidential confession to make: Cooking really is my favorite form of courtship.

What does it mean for a grocery store and its shoppers to share the love? On Valentine’s Day we’ll be conducting our annual Love Survey in front of the store: we’ll be inviting you to write a sentence or two on why you love the BriarPatch. We’ve gotten some great answers the past few years and handed out a lot of chocolate hearts (it’s OK – not everything you eat has to be super healthy). This year we’ll have a slightly new twist on the theme: How do you share that love?

Our Board of Directors is getting in on the act as well. At our retreat last June, we took a fresh look at our Ends policies, and out of that emerged with great enthusiasm for expanding what we mean by “Access to high quality, healthy products, especially local and organic food.” Access has traditionally focused on the products. Now, we’re also looking at the people who have – or don’t have – access to those products. Our challenge, in briefest terms, is how do we share our lovable products with more people, particularly those who have felt they can’t afford them? Our management team is all aboard for this endeavor: Where can prices come down? Where are they already competitive but perceived to be higher? And the much broader question: How do we address food insecurity in our community and what can we do about it?

We show love for our selves, our partners, our families, our friends, and our community by serving – and donating – great food. Yeah, Shakespeare, music may be the food of love, but around here, food is the food of love. Play on: Shop. Cook. Eat. Share.


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