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Pogues Run Grocer and Made For Each Other

After 3 years of planning and delays, Indianapolis’ first food Co-op is up and running near the corner of 10th and Rural. The store’s major goal is to bring fresh and local produce to the neighborhood, but they also provide bulk and higher-end processed foods to appeal to a city-wide clientele.

Pogues Run is collaborating with Made For Each Other, located in a store front across 10th Street. The art project uses recycled boxes in a clever way.  The Methodist Center mentioned in the picture below was recently featured in Time Magazine as an innovative project for youths to be involved in learning through the summer months.

It’s exciting to learn about the collaboration of these organizations, which has helped to revitalize East 10th Street. Kudos to all who are involved.

9 Responses to “ “Pogues Run Grocer and Made For Each Other”

  1. Chris Barnett says:

    Q: How many community-development people does it take to start a neighborhood grocery store?
    A: A lot more than you might think, and it takes a lot longer than you might imagine. :)

    Even though PRG is physically at 10th & Rural, it sits metaphorically at the intersection of food and community development. It’s about:
    -neighborhood access to healthy, affordable food
    -neighborhood education about healthy eating (which is worthless without access)
    -adaptive re-use (the only new equipment is the bulk bins; everything else you see inside came out of the old Cafe Patachou, the closed Sunflower Market, and the closed CVS at 18th & Illinois; the building was returned to retail use after sitting empty several years; we even re-used lumber from demolished interior partitions)
    -neighborhood economic development (eight new jobs; several employees live within walking distance and several commute by IndyGo)
    -community control (the store is owned by a non-profit corporation, which is governed according to cooperative principles by its member-elected board of directors)
    -local sourcing
    -urbanism (thousands of potential customers live within a few blocks, on one of the most active pedestrian corridors in the city; three bus lines serve the corner)
    -community collaboration, like the one Kevin highlights in his post.
    .
    It’s a good start, and I’m proud to be one of the founding directors.

  2. Curt says:

    I hope that the new place thrives! Hopefully, you guys can also remain cost competitive with other area grocers so that people will return time and again for their needs.

    Good luck Chris!

  3. Chris Barnett says:

    Wait a minute…urbanists want local stores but big-box pricing? :)
    .
    Here’s the thing, Curt: convenience is worth something. Most people don’t properly value their time or the automobile cost of that “stock up” trip to Wally World.
    .
    Let’s say time’s worth $20/hour. Spend 22 minutes each way on driving and parking for your trip to Wally World, and you’ve spent an extra 15 bucks of time going out of your way to shop there.
    .
    Now figure the car cost. It’s around 9 miles round-trip to my nearest Wally World; using the IRS allowance of $0.50/mile, that’s another $4.50
    .
    So for me, there would be “hidden” cost of nearly $20 per trip to shop the big W. Gotta shake that auto-centric worldview…:) I can drive home past PRG and add zero time or distance to my commute and spend a little more on groceries just for the convenience; looking at total cost it should be a net gain for me.
    .
    And there are deals. I’m an apple a day guy and PRG has the cheapest apples in town, on special at 59 cents a pound…and they’re locally grown. Even the regular price of 99 cents is cheaper than Marsh. The bulk bean, lentil, pea, rice, and pasta prices are competitive, too.

  4. Thanks for the clarification on prices Chris. I was concerned about that.

  5. Curt Ailes says:

    You confuse me for being that autocentric thinker Chris ;) I was merely alluding to the fact that Kroger is just down the street and could offer a competitive price option for most goods.

    Personally, I spend more for quality groceries. My wife and I care about locally sourced goods as well and do our part. But we all know that many people don’t think that way and only look for how they can get the most for the least. To that end, I hope that there are enough people who “care” about doing the right thing to keep PRG afloat.

    To that end, I again wish you good luck!

  6. Micah says:

    I can’t wait to check this place out next week. I’m a huge produce fan but, although nobody can compete with Meijer—I get sick of the commute just for a simple thing like produce! Hope PRG is reason enough to frequent the place. Marsh (O’Malia’s) needs some competition…desperately!

  7. Columbusite says:

    Definitely a good start in Indy’s hood; no food co-op in any of ours and we have plenty. It’ll be interesting to see how this rubs off on the rest of the street. Might soon be some bars that you would actually to step foot into.

  8. Jen says:

    I was thrilled that PRG finally opened. The location was not the obvious choice but will make a big impact on the surrounding blocks. PRG is located a short bike ride east of my house and is much closer than either O’Malia’s (Marsh) or the Kroger on Lindale. The prices on bulk foods are great- better than any box store. The produce prices are also very good. I bought organic broccoli for .99/lb. Best of all, none of the produce looks like it has been sitting around for months. There is obvious pride and care for the food on display. Packaged goods are a little pricy but most of the people in the neighborhoods around the store are already quite used to being charged this way (Family Dollar, gas stations…) and for lower quality product. Perhaps, when business increases, the prices on the packaged goods will go down. There is also a cute little deli with Boar’s Head meats/cheeses and they make sandwiches and have soup for a buck a cup. Who can argue with that?

  9. Curt says:

    Me and my wife were in Saturday and had the sandwich special and bought a couple apples. The sandwiches were a really good deal and tasted fantastic.

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