Support Small Businesses Or They Won’t Survive
You may have heard the news this week that Aussie Farmers Direct had to close its doors after thirteen years of service. The reason they gave for the closure: they could not compete with the two major supermarket chains.
This hit a nerve with The Organic Place crew as we too are a small company who supports local farmers and businesses by purchasing and delivering their products. All our employees are also locals.
We decided to write this extra article this week because we believe we need to spread the word about how important it is to support your local businesses and farmers. This is is the reason – we don’t want to see any more small businesses go under due to big business competitors. Whether it is fresh produce, clothing, toys, artwork, jewellery, furniture or books – if we don’t support the local, independent businesses which sell these goods then we cannot expect them and their excellent, personal service to be there forever. Picking and choosing when you support local is not sustainable for small businesses.
Wouldn’t you rather see your money go to people in your local community, to help pay for their children’s school fees, their annual holiday (if they even have the luxury or money to have one), or their new home renovation, than to two conglomerates that will just continue to buy more businesses and make their duopoly even stronger?
We know it is tempting to nick into a Target, Kmart or a Safeway and grab a whole variety of products at once but we ask you to do your best and think ahead before you shop at these places.
If it’s the thought of going to several different places to buy different products that is difficult for you (because you have to drag children in and out of cars, because you are time poor after working all day, or perhaps because you don’t have your own mode of transport for example) perhaps consider researching local businesses online. Many local businesses will deliver to your door, (The Organic Place is just one of many that provide this service). You won’t even have to go to one store – what could be better than having your shopping come to you at home?
If it’s because local shops tend to be a little more expensive than the big businesses’ stores, I ask you to consider the quality of the product and service that is being provided, and as I’ve already mentioned, that your money is staying in your community. I have found, living in a small town that the quality of the wares far outweighs the cost. I also find that the local business orders in the best of their products and has them all in the one place. You don’t need to shop around at ten different stores to find a dress as the local clothing store has a beautiful variety to choose from.
Also with regard to cost, consider that by shopping local you are using a minimal amount of petrol, compared to driving further to a busy shopping centre.
And what about the part that you really can’t put a price on, the human factor? I love seeing a friendly face when I visit my local businesses and have them recognise me and my children. How good is it when your local cafe has your coffee order down pat? (One of my town’s cafe owners confided that while she was terrible with names, she knew half the town’s coffee orders by their faces). Or when the local florist gives your kids a free small posy to create something with when they get home?
The Organic Place crew also love to connect with their customers online and to brighten their day when they bring your bag of fruit and veg to your door on a Thursday. This human connection is priceless.
So please, share the Facebook post about your local artist, head off to your local craft market for a toy for your nephew’s birthday, and order in the book you want at your local bookstore instead of driving to the nearest Big W.
Support local so we can keep our local businesses thriving and our local business owners working and earning. It all starts and ends with you! Please choose to support local.