Natural Foods Merchandiser
Health stores in Iowa, Colorado close as natural market expands

Health stores in Iowa, Colorado close as natural market expands

Is a growing natural marketplace a benefit or burden? Two smaller health food stores cite competition as the deciding factor to close up shop.

While many natural retailers are expanding operations, some small stores are feeling the pinch. Two retailers in particular recently succumbed to the competition and changing needs of shoppers.

Organic food seller Roots Market in Cedar Falls, Iowa, will close in September because of increasing competition, according to the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier.

“You can find Hy-Vees with great big health market sections now,” owner Rob Pruitt told the newspaper.

There were still as many customers coming into the store, Pruitt said.

“There’s a downward trend in our sales,” he said. “It’s not that our traffic has gone down; it’s that our average ticket price has gone down.”

And a small health food store called Cabin Country Natural Foods in Loveland, Colo., has suffered the same challenges. The downtown store will end its 30-year tenure in two weeks, owner Jacki McAndrews told the Reporter-Herald newspaper. Competition and changing shopping habits hit the store, she said.

"The Internet has hurt us; the big stores have hurt us," she said. "We don't see the traffic that we used to."

"The focus has shifted from people wanting that personal relationship ... to saving their pennies," she said.

Is staying in business tough where you're located? Share in the comments.

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