Founder of Choice Market in Denver, CO., Mike Fogarty came to us with a challenge – how can Choice improve the efficiency of their kitchen, while sourcing more local ingredients for their prepared food menu? Our answer to that challenge was to look closer at the differentiator of Choice as the “new convenience store”, and make a stronger commitment to sourcing locally produced grocery items and locally grown food ingredients.
We often talk about Choice Market as the brand that is filling the gap that Whole Foods left behind with the Amazon acquisition. Remember when Whole Foods had little tables from food entrepreneurs who were handing out food samples? Well those days are certainly gone and we are predicting that people want more from their grocery and their corner store experiences – that’s where Choice Market comes in. They are a convenience store and quick service restaurant (QSR) sourcing up to 70% of their grocery products locally – something Whole Foods used to do. By doing so, Choice is helping artisans and makers have a new launching pad for their consumer product goods.
For the prepared foods section, we helped Mike tap into the experience and expertise of advisor and Chef Erik Oberholtzer
. Erik and the Choice leadership conducted one full day of interviews with farmers and providers to replace Sysco and other non-local food sources on both the shelves and the kitchen.
The new menu features more plant-forward options, brighter flavors, fresher locally grown ingredients and a commitment to healthier options. Helping us do so are places like Altius Farms and using one of Colorado’s largest crops, quinoa. Devoting ourselves to this method introduces a few biodiverse ingredients, helping the brand stay way ahead of the curve by contributing to impact the UN’s SDG’s and the goal to reverse climate change through the food system.
Some new menu items include the Blue Algae bowl has concentrations of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants giving it its bold blue/green color. It’s also known as spirulina, a true superfood.
Fonio is a nutrient dense grain found in some of Choice’s seasonal items. It’s a super grain native to West Africa, is rich in amino acids, and offers 16g of protein per cup.
We are truly proud of the results of the menu refresh and the work that Cohere is doing in this industry – with the launch of the advisory services like this, we can have a true, long-lasting impact on brands and their success. Hospitality, food and beverage, and retail can do more for the health of people and the planet. It is our duty to advise clients like Choice Market and inspire them to make those goals congruent with profitability!