See a Problem, Make a Change

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The goal of this blog is to educate and raise awareness to gain support towards positive change in my community. This post is dedicated to Mr. Hernandez, the supervisor of Mother’s Market and Kitchen in Santa Ana. This is the location I most frequently go to and will possibly see a change for my community.

Dear Mr. Hernanez,

I am very impressed with the prompt reply of your staff and the connection with the customers. I shop at Mothers Market and Kitchen quite often and have noticed your staffs willingness to inform the customers in the store of remedies and insight into the products you carry.

However, I do believe that the awareness of non-GMO food and eating organically can be higher in our community and I believe that you can help.

During my conversation with Terri I explained my vision for Mothers Market and Kitchen. That is to have the deli area remain open past 10pm allowing the people who eat organically or must follow a strict diet have a place to eat late at night. Also, for them not to be forced to either not eat, or spend their money at a fast-food restaurant.

Terri recently emailed me after the meeting to inform me that you have tried to have the deli remain open but it was not a success. She also asked if there was a community board at Chapman University to post special events and possible the idea of a Chapman University ID discount. I believe these are both amazing idea that the Chapman community will support and get involved in.

Now I would like to propose to you, Mr. Hernandez, that I can meet with you to discuss involvement with the Chapman Community. I believe this will be a great direction for Mother’s Market and Kitchen and for Chapman University. Terri also mentioned that every few weeks you and the other Mother’s Market and Kitchen managers meet. Would it be possible if I sit in on one of those meetings?

Mr. Hernandez I truly believe that it is important to have organic food available for people otherwise money will be spent and show support of GMO food. If the late night healthy “fast-food” option was available, where would you spend your money?

Thank you for your time and consideration,

Kara

Mother’s Market and Kitchen Interview

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Mother’s Market and Kitchen is very responsive to their customers. I recently sent an email to clarify if the store is a chain or franchise to contact an actual person about my ideas.  the person who I should direct my concerns and ideas to. The email was forward to Terri Takemoto. She replied within 24 hours asking me if I wanted to come in and meet with her to clarify any questions I had and discuss my interests further. This shows Mother’s Market and Kitchen cares about their consumers and wants to make a personal connection.

Q: When was the store founded and by whom? What was their vision?
A: Mother’s Market and Kitchen was started in 1978 by a group of family and friends who did yoga together. Their vision was to provide the community with natural/organic food of the best quality for their dietary needs.

Q: Who is your primary audience? average age? 
A: The average customer is in their 30′s and are conscious about their health, have dietary needs (for example gluten-free), or support the organic/non-GMO movement.

Q: When is there the most traffic in the store and why?
A: Monday through Friday the lunch hour  is the busiest part of the day and the weekends  due to the grab and go area because it is quick and easy healthy food.

Q: Where do you get the supplies for the “Food-Court” like area? 
A: Most supplies are specifically ordered for that part of the store, they do use produce from the store as well. Another main aspect of that area is the vendors who provide pre packaged grab and go meals.They try and be as GMO free as possible.

Q: Where do you get the recipes for the Juice Bar? 
A: The recipes came over the years with a background of naturalpathic.

I learned that most Mother’ Markets have an actual restaurant within the market, however the Santa Ana location doesn’t due to restraints of the building–this forced them to create the grab and go area. I explained to Terri that is what sparked my interest in creating a “grab and go” type area that is open late at night.

After talking with Terri for a bit I explained to her my blog assignment and my position on GMO food, a life style of moving towards organic, and my realization of a healthy food for the night owl at convenience. If the late night healthy “fast-food” option was available, where would you spend your money?

The Local Problem: The Proposal

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Healthy at convenience does not exists in our culture….YET. 

It is a niche market that has not been approached and I believe could be not only a huge asset in changing the community but a profitable market. Today you try and be healthy, especially if you are informed of the facts, however sometimes you fall a victim of the “fast-food” world only because that is your only choice.

What if you were actually given the option to spend your money where you want to and what you believe in?

I live in Orange/Santa Ana area in California. Here this option does not exist once Mother’s Market and Kitchen closes. The Santa Ana location has a grab and go option for food, HEALTHY AT CONVENIENCE. This is an amazing option to have in our community as people will utilize this option for lunch over “fast-food.”

I think that Mother’s Market and Kitchen should either extend their hours for the Healthy Night Owls of our community or consider their very own free standing restaurant  food court. This food court could mimic what is in their store with the hot and cold deli, juice bar, burrito stand, pizza, and even vendor food. This has not been done in our community and I feel that it is a great opportunity.

My proposal to Alejandro Hernandez is to extend the hours of the Santa Ana branch of Mother’s Market and Kitchen deli area. There is a side door that can be used for a separate entrance allowing customers to the “food-court” like area.

My greater proposal, rather suggestion is to Vic Sohaji CEO of Mother’s Market and Kitchen. I believe that he should consider the above idea of opening a Healthy at Convenience Food Court that is open to the late night community.

If the late night healthy “fast-food” option was available, where would you spend your money?

Generation Xy Supports the Movement

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The current trends of society is “going green.” Green is the new black for most companies. Generation Xy wants to see a forward movement in change for the greater good of the earth. Research shows they are more likely  to choose the soap with the biodegradable bottle if it is an equivalent price of other soaps. Marketers target the Xy generation through sustainability.

The Xy generation is a large supporter of Prop 37 and the movement of purchasing organic food. The Organic Trade Association’s 2011 Organic Industry Survey states that “U.S. sales of organic food and beverages have grown from $1 billion in 1990 to $26.7 billion in 2010. Sales in 2010 represented 7.7 percent growth over 2009 sales. Experiencing the highest growth in sales during 2010 were organic fruits and vegetables, up 11.8 percent over 2009 sales.”

One of the most efficient ways to get a quick response from my own peers is Facebook. I posted a status within less than an hour  there were many responses.

“Where would you spend your money if you were looking for a quick meal after 10pm? Fast Food or meals that have the option of organic, pesticide free, gluten free and just healthy. which would you choose? why?”

  • “healthy! screw fa(s)t food” -Chelsae
  • “Gluten free, organic, pesticide free, gmo free. Hands down. Not even a choice for me.”- Kehau
  • “People against it often say it will cost too much to add new labels, but it seems like they already change labels all the time.”- Luke

It is OBVIOUS that my generation will support the health/organic food industry, especially if they become educated and aware of the issue. There is support of making a change in eating patterns within my own community its just a matter of awareness.

I believe that the people who would spend their money on “fast-food” simply don’t know the facts. If the late night healthy “fast-food” option was available, where would you spend your money?

 

An Active Community is a Healthy Community

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VOTE YES! – Prop. 37.

This is the first election I will be able to vote. I am not a very political person, however, my passion for Proposition 37 is the reason I registered to vote. I have the opportunity to be part of a change in my own society. I am making an educated vote on this topic and I hope you will too. Your vote will be heard and support the organic/GMO free community.

Being part of a movement allows you to feel a connection with your community. I feel everyone should make an effort to participate for the greater good, ultimately benefiting themselves, their local community, their nation, and their planet. It starts with a passion for the well being for others as well as ourselves. It wasn’t too long ago that I didn’t understand the pro’s and con’s of organic, natural, and whole foods.

Once I became more educated, I took action. I began to shop at the appropriate place so my money supports what I believe. Now I am taking action for the nation by voting YES on Prop. 37, which will inform people of what the food they are eating is actually made of. As for the local community I ask, where are the appropriate places to eat for convince just like other “fast-food” restaurants? Where can I quickly grab a meal that will support my stance on this issue in my own local community.

The answer is Mother’s Market and Kitchen. Today I visited their deli area for lunch. When I was checking out, I received this pack of papers in my grocery bag.  I unloaded the bag and inside was a bundle of information on non-GMO food and the movement to be organic and to have labels identifying GMO food. I have never seen Mother’s Market and Kitchen actually educate their consumers on the issue. It was comforting to see that they care about their customers and want them to be educated.

While it is amazing that there are more stores supporting GMO free food, I feel that it is time to take the next step and transition the selling of GMO free food to restaurants.

If the late night healthy “fast-food” option was available, where would you spend your money?

The Need for the Truth of Food

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“We can either pay the farmer, or the hospital”

There are many reasons to support GMO free food. I recently I watched a few Ted Talk speakers who discuss the harm GMO’s are causing our bodies and the society in which we live. Both videos acknowledge the current issue to the benefit the generations to come.

NUMBER 1 REASON GENERATION Xy SHOULD CARE

If you haven’t comprehended it by now, please do so–YOUR CHOICES AS ADULTS EFFECT THE FUTURE OF CHILDREN AND COUNTRY. Fast food is taking over. It is altering children’s perception of what food is, how it’s supposed to taste, and what it’s supposed to look like. Adults, aka US, are the current role models.  We all have children around us in our families, friends, school. This is the opportunity to make a change in generations to come. [Look under "Teach Every Child About Food]

NUMBER 2 REASON GENERATION Xy SHOULD CARE

Generation X and Y is the leader of the current society. If you are choosing to purchase “fast-food” all the time and support GMO food, then society will remain on that path. However, if you do decide to spend a little extra time, a little extra money, and care a little more about your body  and others, then things can and will change. SPEND YOUR MONEY ON WHAT YOU BELIEVE AND SUPPORT, otherwise change will never happen.

If the late night healthy “fast-food” option was available, where would you spend your money?

The Future of Food

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There are many documentary’s on the issue of GMO’s in our society and its prevalence in America. However, the most convincing film is The Future of Food [under my other pages tab]. This film explores the industry of GMO food and the challenge of  growing organically.  The film exploits the Monsanto Company through the investigation of a particular case over GMO seeds. In simple terms, the Monsanto Company has patented seeds that grow into crops that are genetically modified.  These crops have been mutated to repel pests.

I agree with an article from the New York Time’s that the film discusses many questions both ethical and scientific.

  • Is it valid for company’s to patent genes since genetic material is alive?
  • How does genetically modified food effect the human body?
  • Is there a way to control genetically modified plants crossbreeding with wild?
  • Are GMO’s helping in world hunger issue?
  • Will GMO plants and seeds reduce biodiversity?
  • How much do you personally care about what you consume?

In conclusion, the film reveals that government officials ignore research towards the promotion of biodiversity for the sake of agribusiness. The film show real fruits and vegetables that look so delicious at  farmers markets.

MY CHALLENGE TO YOU: Make 3 days worth of meals with solely organic food that is approved by the USDA

Notice the taste, texture, and overall quality of the produce.  The poultry and meats are worlds away from those injected with GMO’s.

Its amazing that there are more stores supporting GMO free food, but I feel that it’s time for the next step and be equal to the restaurants and stores selling GMO food. If the late night healthy “fast-food” option was available, where would you spend your money?