It’s been a few months since New Flower Farmer’s Market came to Dallas, and although I went on the second day it was open, I never got around to blogging about it because I was still in my first trimester and soooo tired all the time. Colleen reminded me recently, and at first I couldn’t really come up with any reason that this should be interesting to anyone, and then this morning – a scandal! Ooo!
Here’s the story about New Flower. New Flower is known as Sun Flower in other states, but I guess there is some kind of trademark issue in Dallas or Texas or something, so it’s New Flower here. Their motto is “Serious Food…Silly Prices”. When I first heard about it from someone else, it was described as “a Whole Foods with the prices of a regular supermarket” (oh, Whole Paycheck, no one can be you) .
This is not an entirely accurate description, and is not something claimed by New Flower anywhere in their marketing material. The first time I visited, I was indeed impressed by the number of store-brand organic items they carried, and like all store brands, they were indeed low cost. They carried some canned and frozen organic items at great prices, and they have an impressive dried goods area that has a lot of mixes with recipes that make easy vegetarian soups and even veggie burgers, which are also extremely cost effective. WF has the dried goods area, but doesn’t have mixes per se, you have to know how to use those dried things and I usually don’t. I would say that New Flower occasionally also has some organic and natural produce, but most of their produce is actually conventional, meaning that it’s not necessarily organic or local. When they do have organic, the prices are good, but nothing extraordinary. I enjoy going there because I know that when I do buy grocery items that are not on my list, they won’t be expensive items, because it’s priced as a regular grocery store.
Here is where the controversy comes in. I have been following another store, Natural Grocer by Vitamin Cottage, on Twitter because they have a truly awesome store in Plano which I have visited once. My friend told me about it, and I would love to go more regularly but, like Costco, I would have to drive around 40 minutes just to get there (and then 40 minutes back), and I just can’t swing that on a weekly, or even monthly, basis. Natural Grocer is hardcore natural/organic/green. It is in all their marketing material and can be seen in the products in their stores, which are all natural or organic.
So this morning, Natural Grocer starts bashing NewFlower on Twitter. Here are some of their Tweets:
- New Flower / Sun Flower markets sales flyer: “natural” meats 7 out of 15 items. Grass fed meats = zero out of 15 items.
- New Flower / Sun Flower markets sales flyer: “natural” grocery items = 5 or about 5%.
- New Flower / Sun Flower markets sales flyer: 22 fruits and vegetables on sale, only 6 are organic.
- New Flower / Sun Flower markets sales flyer: 100 products, only 6 are organic.
Does Natural Grocer really feel that threatened by NewFlower? Are they just bored and have nothing else to do but analyze other people’s ads and then bash them?
And mostly, do they not realize that New Flower is not a store claiming to be natural or organic?
It’s in Flash so I can’t requote, but here is New Flower’s “About Us” statement from their web site. Nowhere do they claim to be natural or organic all the time, or even most of the time. It is just a regular grocery store that happens to carry some good organic and natural brands. Like Tom Thumb and their “O Organics” brand. Or Kroger and their “Naturally Preferred” brand.
I like New Flower, and I go there when I can. Especially for dried goods or frozen or canned organics. I would recommend visiting if you are nearby!
But I am thinking the 40 minute drive to Natural Grocer just might not be worth it. I don’t feel good about giving my money to a company that’s OK with that kind of attack tactic on Twitter.