Every Thursday morning for the past six years, Aasha Shaw has run the Organic Corner Store market at Glenelg North’s community centre. Now the market has found a bricks-and-mortar home on the corner of Anzac Highway and Alison Street.
With fellow stallholders Emily Jaggard (Seed Organic Wholefoods) and Zeljka Danilovic (Cheeky Organics), Shaw merged production to create an organic retail hub and food co-op.
For the three women, the market started as a way of sourcing organic, sustainable produce and products for their families. “Between us, we have eight children and a grandchild,” says Shaw. “When I started the market, my son was about to go to school, and I thought it’d be a nice hobby to do on a Thursday morning.”
It quickly became much more than a hobby, and community demand grew every year. Eventually, they’d outgrown the market and started brewing ideas for a bigger space.
“We drive past this shop every day to get to where the market was, just up the road,” says Shaw. “Suddenly it had a little ‘for rent’ sign on it … and all the pieces fell into place.”
The store is tiny, but bright and airy, with clean white walls and large windows. With painting, flooring and lighting already done, all it needed was refrigeration and shelving.
The store is a retail hub for organic local produce including fruit and vegetables, dairy and eggs, bulk wholefoods and environmentally friendly cleaning supplies and cosmetics. They’ll also be making their own nut milk and hemp milk in-house. With an emphasis on zero waste, all products are designed to be bought in bulk with reusable packaging, such as glass bottles for milk and olive oil, and weigh-your-own frozen berries to avoid excess plastic.
It’s also the headquarters for a food co-op system. Each week, Shaw and her team choose a selection of local fruit and vegetables depending on what’s in season. In each box, you get $30 worth of wholesale produce. A $5 administration fee covers the cost of packing and delivery.
“It’s a nice way to introduce people to new things,” says Shaw. She shares recipe ideas to support the learning process.
A swap-box initiative ensures that there is no wastage. Got lemons in your box, but you’ve got a tree in the backyard? Swap them out for some extra broccoli.
“The thing about the market for us was really the sense of community,” says Shaw.
The market opened today and will trade four days a week.
Organic Corner Store
1A Alison Street, Glenelg North