Simple Abundance has a good yearSimple Abundance owner Kiki Gheen said 2010 was a pretty good year for her business.
By: Jon Swedien, The Republican Eagle
Simple Abundance owner Kiki Gheen said 2010 was a pretty good year for her business.
It turns out the local business community agreed.
Simple Abundance was awarded the Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce's new business of the year award last month. It's an award Gheen said she was surprised but happy to receive.
"It's really very humbling," Gheen said. "It's other small businesses in town that are voting, so I was quite proud."
While the grocery store, which sells locally produced organic food, is new to the chamber it's been around for more than 10 years.
Gheen runs the store with daughter Anna Boelman. Boelman, who has a degree in health promotions, helps her mother educate shoppers on the products they buy and different approaches to a healthy lifestyle.
Gheen says there is often a learning curve when people embrace organic foods because preparation is more than throwing an entrée in the microwave. That's where part of the educational aspect comes in, she said.
That was especially true in 2010, Gheen said, as the store sold more bulk items like rice and beans and flour for people who like to cook from scratch.
In the past year the store also bulked up on its local products. The store now sells products from 85 local or regional companies, whereas before that number was 70.
Gheen is glad Simple Abundance joined the Red Wing Area Chamber. The organization has helped her marketing, she said.