As I was out and about with the car today, I decided to swing by the new “natural foods store” on Burns Ave. in Charlottetown called A Fresh Start. Since the demise of the Uncommon Grocer and the Cool Dog Deli and the “we sell powders and pills to make you healthy” conversion of The Root Cellar, I’m always on the lookout for small independent grocery stores selling healthy food.
Unfortunately, at least from first appearances, A Fresh Start falls firmly into the “powders and pills” category, with pre-packaged “health food” of the sort you would find at Nature’s Harvest filling out the inventory.
It’s sad that the “natural foods” industry has become a sort of parallel “manufactured foods” industry to that offered by the large grocery stores. Sure it’s nice to be able to by crackers made from kamut, but if those crackers are made in California, shipped here by truck, and packaged just like Ritz, is this really a step forward?
The closest you can come to truly natural foods in Charlottetown is the weekly farmer’s market: what could be more natural than real farmers selling things themselves that they grew on their own farms?