Before owning the Green Grocer on Greenville Avenue, Cassie Green worked and traveled as a Cartier regional manager. She envisioned a new life shortly after vising Paris, where she tried on a $3 million necklace.
“When they put a $3 million necklace around my neck, I was excited but I didn’t pass out,” Green recalled. “One week later, I was at the farmer’s market in Chicago listening to where apples come from. I was more excited about that than the necklace. I realized that if I wanted to leave everything to go wrestle kale, this must not be the right field for me.”
After dreaming and discussing the idea with her husband, Gary Stephens, Green opened the Green Grocer in Chicago in 2008. The store paid homage to her last name and spoke to the universal meaning of green living.
“For me, the store also started from the idea of creating community around sustainable food,” Green explained. “It started from the love of this kind of food because it causes a ripple effect of people eating better, and then treating other people better.”
Energized by the success of the Chicago store, Green opened the Green Grocer in Dallas in January of 2013. Green said, “We knew we wanted to open a second store. Our friends at Artizone.com, a food delivery service catering to local artisans, said Dallas needed a store like this: something that offers food that tastes good and is organic. A few days later, they called and said, ‘Let’s talk.'"
Within walking distance of the M-streets in East Dallas, the Green Grocer quickly created a community of like-minded people. Green and her staff are committed to knowing their local customers and meeting their dietary needs.
“We have worked to build a trust with our customers. We have people come in here that are battling cancer, and I take that seriously,” Green said. “If a customer asks me a question that I don’t know, I’ll always go check. That’s part of the community piece: being extraordinarily ethical, transparent and honest.”
In another effort to create community, the Green Grocer is dedicated to serving and donating to local nonprofits. Each month, the store hosts its First Tuesday Party in partnership with its Chefs’ Choice Charity program.
“The idea of giving back has always been a huge part of what we believe,” Green said. “We tend to give to smaller organizations so we know where the money is going … We are all about getting to the root here.”
For more information about the Green Grocer and its local efforts, visit the store’s website.