Retail Merchandiser - March/April 2017 - 64
day who deal with both the natural and conventional side
of the business; however, we do pick partners that certainly
have high moral ethics and want to maintain a consistent
drive pushing forward positive management of the business.
That includes a reduced carbon footprint, supporting growth
of all organic items, a cage free program, and grass fed/free
range and antibiotic free meat."
Maintaining these standards is a lot of hard work, according to Sherrell. "We have 100 people at our support office
that help manage those relationships. A lot of our bigger
vendor partners actually have employees inside of our support office to help manage those relationships as well," he
explains. "Our distribution center gives us the ability to
manage that in-house."
Fresh Thyme also self-distributes nearly 99 percent of its
"Produce is the backbone of our business," Sherrell says.
"We have the best produce at the best price in town. We try
to cut out the middleman so we can offer the best prices and
best values to our customers. We did that because want to
be nimble, take advantage of opportunistic buys like buying
local and emphasize organic."
A 'Smiling' Effort
When looking to acquire talent, Fresh Thyme looks specifically for people who smile.
"You have to smile. And unfortunately, it's so underrated,"
Sherrell says. "If you go to an interview and you don't smile,
smirk or have smiling eyes, then you probably aren't cut out
for this business.