Be Good To The Earth … Be Good To Yourself … At Lori’s Natural Foods Center
By: Marsha Bonecutter
Attention: Be sure you read all the way to the end of Lori’s Natural Food Center Retailer Story! Lori’s has customized limited time special offer for you at the bottom of this post. The limited time offer ends October 17th 2010, and you definitely don’t want to miss it!
By the time Jim Starks was 25 years old; his life experiences far outweighed his years. Jim was a decorated World War II veteran, having been awarded the Bronze Star for rescuing a fellow soldier during a battle in Germany. Jim was also a graduate of Syracuse University, with a degree in marketing. In 1950, Jim began a 31 year career with the Bausch and Lomb Optical Company. In 1951, he reconnected with Dorie Formicola, (they had met briefly in 1949) and they began dating. In 1952, the couple was married. If you think that sounds like a very full and rewarding life, you ain’t heard nothin’ yet!
Raising a family in the fifties may have been simpler than it is today, but it certainly was not any easier. Dorie and Jim planted and maintained a garden and canned and preserved their harvest every year, supplying the family with healthy foods year round. This was the normal routine for the Starks’ family up until about 4 years ago. You cannot be an avid and successful gardener without developing a love and appreciation for wholesome foods. That was the foundation for the next phase of Jim Stark’s already impressive career.
After wearing many “hats” at Bausch and Lomb, including marketing, scientific instrumentation, materials management, and personnel relations, Jim took an early retirement in 1981. He was only 56 years old. “He didn’t really retire”, laughs Dorie, “he just refocused!” Jim said, “I was looking for something else I could do and be proud of.”
After searching for a time, Jim found a store called the Bread Depot and bought the place. “They carried one line of vitamins and a small quantity of bulk foods like flour, grains and nuts,” remembers Jim. “Gradually, we replaced the products that were there with natural and organic products, plus wellness products including vitamins.” Dorie and Jim began looking for a new name for their store. “We submitted many names of natural food stores,” explains Dorie, “but they were rejected because they were already used.” Their lawyer suggested putting a name in the title. Jim chose the name of his 19 year old partner…his daughter, Lori! “Lori’s just sounded better than Jim’s,” said Dorie. Lori’s Natural Foods Center opened in September of 1981.
Located in the Genesee Valley Regional Market, at 900 Jefferson Road in Rochester, NY, Lori’s has expanded many times to accommodate their growth and now boasts a 14,500 square foot store carrying a complete line of groceries, including foods for individuals with food sensitivities, including wheat free, gluten free, low sodium, sugar free and dairy free. Lori’s has a huge selection of organic produce from local organic farmers. Bulk granola cereals, soy milk and yogurts are some of Jim’s personal favorites. An excellent variety of environmentally sound paper and cleaning products, personal care items and supplements can also be found at Lori’s. Customers looking for better choices are regulars at Lori’s, because Lori’s prides themselves on carrying products that other stores don’t have.
Jim and Dorie, now 85 and 81 years old, can still be found at Lori’s every Wednesday, where Jim does some ordering and writes articles for the monthly newsletter. “There are still people who stop to remind us that they have been with us since the first small store way back in 1981,” says Jim.
Lori works mostly from her home these days, quite a change from when she and her father were the only two employees and were at the store all day every-day that the store was open! Lori’s husband, John, has taken the reins and is at the store every day. Lori, who shies away from the limelight, is seen pictured below with John. Yes, she has a bag on her head and he is a banana!
Some years ago, John and Lori were approached by Bill Mulligan, Senior, an affiliate of the Genesee Valley Regional Market. A musician, Bill had a very catchy tune floating around in his head. John and Lori loved the song, and awhile later, after some “tweaking” in a sound studio they finally used it for a local TV ad. John and some other employees dressed up like fruits and vegetables for the commercial. The jingle is one of those that you just can’t keep from singing along with. It appealed to adults and children alike and is still very popular today… and so is Lori’s Natural Foods, where “you can be good to the earth and good to yourself every time you shop at Lori’s.”
*Lori’s Natural Food Center Limited-Time Special Offers*
To Celebrate our 29th Anniversary Here Is Our Special Offer To You!
29% Off These Two Products Below
1) Berlin Natural Bakery Whole Grain Spelt Bread
2) Berlin Natural Bakery Sprouted Spelt Bread
To take advantage of this special please mention this article to the checker by saying “I saw the article on Berlin Natural Bakery’s website” to get the discount on your selected products!
Offer Expires: October 17, 2010