Market Organics has renovated!

Okay, so if you don’t live / shop in the Byward Market area of Ottawa, you may not have a long term relationship with the store once known as the natural Food Pantry, and for the past few years, known as Market Organics. Located at 126 York Street, just a bit away from Dalhousie Street and a really good shawarma place called, Garlic Corner, Market Organics has been a great place to get organic foods, funky vegan stuff and more for myself and @wtl for years.  We usually get our B.Goods Cookies there if we are not near the B.Goods “Mobile Bakery”, and while their prices and selection may not compare to big box places like the Bulk Barn in quantity, the quality of what we find there and the convenience more than makes up for it!

So, in case I forgot to mention it at the beginning of this post, Market Organics was also one of the very first retailers [ see the list to the left of the others] of Eco-TAV Pouches.  In the past, when the location was smaller { half the size} and crowded with oodles of stuff, the pouches were pretty much invisible.  I missed last weekend’s grand re-opening 🙁 but was able to pop in today for my fix of bulk choc chips, aforementioned cookies, almond milk , etc.  And I saw my babies!  There, to the left as you stand in the single line waiting to pay for your purchases and perusing the fresh baked goods, hanging below a hand written sign suggesting” Why take a paper bag when you can get a Reusable bag”, there were a healthy selection of Mini Pouches, and Large Pouches.  There is NO ECO-TAV LOGO on DISPLAY, but you’ll see it when you look closely at the care-label on the flap!

The Eco-TAV Mini Pouches really are just the right size for a single yummy cookie from any of the bakeries that supply the store.  And the Large makes a great place to assemble a wondrous collection of a prepackaged  Market Organics sandwich, fruit and perhaps a lovely side of couscous or salad from their fridge!   It keeps it all just fine to get you to your snacking destination and is large enough to create an eating surface 🙂

Shameless self-promotion done now.

Back to the new layout!

I chose to enter by the front of 126 York by fluke, I did not actually realize that the other entrance on the side is now closed off.  So, I walked into the building and was directed leftwards, into the store.  FLOORSPACE!!! OMG!  If you were ever in the store when it was only half the size, you may remember how there were always little ladders, and boxes to walk around as staff was constantly restocking shelves!  Now, I can envision an entire impromptu dance number in the entrance area alone!  They have a sidebar/nook/ eating area ‘ cause they have a little cafe set up!  Woot!  I was not able to try any of the food, but it looked like a small selection of yummies – salads and gourmet coffee – I’ll be back to test that one of these days for sure!

So, after getting over the initial shock of walking into a huge open space with shelves full of stuff, I kept walking around the horseshoe shaped layout to see what I could see!  Food first, then fridges, then around the corner for cosmetics, vitamins, and the bulk foods are still along the inner wall, though rearranged, of course.  I kept going and found the new check out system with the “Please form one line” sign and two cashes.  These are a bit smaller in counter space, but you are no longer competing with the baked goods for surface area to put your purchases down while paying for them.

You can get your baked goods while you wait in line – great marketing and yes, I picked up one of my favorite Bread and Roses vegan peanut butter squares [ they come in a tiny plastic bag, but what can you do when you know they are really tasty and only offered in the prepackaged manner?].  They always remind me of the peanut butter balls my mom used to make when I was a kid – covered in chocolate, and full of sugar – but these are so much healthier – I swear!

Anyhoo – if you get a moment, pop in, say hi, buy and Eco-TAV Pouch from their display, fill it with yummy baked goods and support 3 or even 4 small businesses in one shot!

On a side note, I am now frequenting the Bridgehead on Richmond Road near Churchill/ MEC, and the lovely lady [ manager?] who served me gave me an “own mug” discount for both my stainless steel mug and my Eco-TAV Pouch! She was very adamant that yes, this discount would be given anytime someone uses something “reusable”!  So, while the head office is really not  interested in carrying the Eco-TAV line, yet, the stores have been very supportive – especially if you are nice about it!  My home Bridgehead location on Dalhousie has been great from the start and kudos to them for that!

Keeping it shades of green!