Health food stores may serve a niche market but their customer base is unusually loyal. That said, health food stores (like their patrons) aren’t immortal.
Looks like the daily grind was just too wearing on The Daily Grind, located (as of September 6th, 2009) on Hawthorne Blvd. in Portland, Oregon. A tip of the cap to Flickr user Todd Mecklem for snapping the sad state of The Daily Grind, a store whose demise is both unexplained and unlikely: if a health food store can’t make it in Portland, where CAN it?
You can bet your Bjork Iceland’s got health food stores, though Heilsuhusid in Reykjavik, the northern nation’s capitol city, seems to be always closed according to Flickr user and traveler Sharyn Morrow (massdistraction). Heilsuhusid means “Health House” in Icelandic just in case you were wondering… and you know you were.
Founded in 1952, Carter’s Foods grew to become Michigan’s only grocery chain 100%-owned by its employees. Carter’s earned a reputation for fresh, healthy foods and produce but intense competition from Wal-Mart and regional supercenter chain Meijer caused Carter’s Foods to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2006. The sequence of images above dates from 2006, 2010 and 2013 and chronicles the Oscoda, MI store’s devolution from a thriving Carter’s Foods (Big Valu until 1993) to an abandoned building to possibly yet another grocery store. Full credit to Flickr user Bobby P. (wachovia_138) for the second two photos.
Abandoned health food stores come in all shapes and sizes, not to mention all types of ownership. Take this former GNC store in downtown Miami’s Bayside Marketplace. Flickr member Phillip Pessar captured the shuttered nutrient emporium in January of 2018.
Flickr member Marco Verch visited the abandoned RAFamily Raw Vegan Cafe in St Petersburg, Russia, in July of 2018. The place sure looks nice for an abandoned store… did it even manage to make it to its opening day? We know Russia isn’t exactly synonymous with veganism and all, but surely in a city as large as the former Leningrad there are enough vegans to make a go of it? Maybe not.
The original Champs vegan diner in Brooklyn, New York shuttered its doors in November of 2014, as photo-documented by Flickr member “Bitch Cakes” above. It didn’t take long for local graffiti artists to move in to make their own statement… one would hope their pigments are plant-based, ie no “pigs”.
One might wonder how a health food store could survive in West Texas, land of cattle, sheep and oil. Perhaps Cal of Cal’s Health Food Store should have wondered that too, before he opened shop in the 8,500-person town of Fort Stockton. Kudos to Flickr user Matthew Rutledge (rutlo) for capturing the weathered sign in front of Cal’s Health Food Store for the ages.