Customer Appreciation Sale

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Jimbo Someck: Leading the independents’ charge

New Hope 360
Natural Foods Merchandiser
Melaina Juntti
Tue, 2015-03-03 14:39
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Jimbo Someck has been a familiar face and name around San Diego for several decades. But to many in the natural products industry, he’s a lauded leader. A champion for organic food since he opened his first Jimbo’s…Naturally! in 1984, Someck continues to work tirelessly to move the industry forward and make sure other independents thrive. He cofounded the Independent Natural Food Retailers Association in 2005 so that he and other established store owners could share their wisdom and expertise. Then in 2011, Jimbo’s became one of the first retailers to adopt a hard stance on GMOs, nixing any new products containing at-risk ingredients. Someck speaks toNatural Foods Merchandiser about the success of his GMO policy, what’s next for GMO labeling and how independents can stay strong

Natural Foods Merchandiser: Why was taking a stand against GMOs so important to you?
Jimbo Someck: We pride ourselves on having high standards, so I did what I thought was right for who we are and what we believe in. I was getting frustrated with manufacturers’ responses whenever we’d ask where they stood on GMOs. Finally, I decided we needed to take a stand and stop bringing in new products that contained at-risk ingredients. Certain items already on our shelves would be grandfathered in, but we would no longer put them on sale and would look to replace them with less-risky options.

NFM: Did you—or do you still—get pushback from manufacturers and distributors?
JS: Some companies were resistant at first and didn’t want to spend the money on Non-GMO Project verification. But many others saw the writing on wall and got verified. Those that worked with us closely and understood our intent really appreciated our stance, and they now view the Non-GMO Project Verified seal as an added value proposition. Over time, most manufacturers have come to like that we’ve gone out on a limb.

NFM: How have your customers responded?
JS: At first our buyers feared that customers who wanted specific products that we didn’t carry would just shop elsewhere. But what this move really did—completely unexpectedly—was attract more customers and create much more loyalty to Jimbo’s brand.

NFM: What do you think about Whole Foods Market essentially following your lead on GMOs?
JS: In the long run, I absolutely think it’s a positive step. Would I rather have heard them say they wanted everything labeled within three years instead of five? Absolutely. But they did what they thought was right. Whole Foods is very much in the public eye, and I’d way rather have them on my side of this issue. They are helping to create demand for GMO labeling.

NFM: Since Proposition 37 failed to pass in 2012, have pro-labeling efforts in California fizzled?
JS: There’s still a huge grassroots effort in Southern California to make sure the labeling issue doesn’t go away. We’ve opened up our stores to pro-labeling groups so they can conduct meetings and send out information through here. We’re not going to win this fight by putting up money against Dow and Monsanto. The only way to succeed is through a grassroots campaign that allows the consumer voice to be heard. And now there are just too many consumers who want to know what’s in their food for this issue to disappear.

NFM: What’s the greatest challenge that you and other independents face?
JS: The biggest challenge is competition. That’s not going to slow down. There’s always been competition, but now there’s Trader Joe’s, Sprouts, Whole Foods, Natural Grocers and even Walmart and supermarkets to compete with. To survive, you just have to get sharper, learn more and move forward, or else you’ll just be treading water and won’t last very long. It’s going to be interesting to see how the landscape shakes out over the next five years.

NFM: What excites you about the future of this industry?
JS: The fact that all these conventional stores now carry organic and GMO-free food is a testament to everything we’ve worked so hard for. I find that tremendously exciting. We’ve been fortunate in the natural products industry to have continued growing for many years while conventional has been flat. Growth yields innovation, new products and a lot of excitement that probably isn’t there on the conventional side. I’m excited that INFRA is thriving and that independents have continued to be strong despite increasing competition from national chains.

Help keep independents strong

Follow Jimbo Someck’s lead

Join INFRA. This organization has quickly become a valuable vehicle for uniting and uplifting independents. Members swap ideas, advice and support and even enhance purchasing power as a group. “We envisioned INFRA as being an important resource for helping independents to stay competitive,” Someck says. So far, it’s been a smashing success.

Adopt a non-GMO stance. Taking a hard line on GMOs can help you stand out from your competition, but it’s a challenging feat, so give manufacturers and distributors enough time to comply. “We value vendor relationships and didn’t want to pull the rug out from under them,” Someck says. “We understand there’s a process companies need to go through, so we told them about our new direction several months ahead of time.”

Love your community. Unlike chain retailers—even natural ones—you’re a local business beloved by your community. So love it back. “It would be hypocritical if we didn’t recognize the valuable role the community plays in our success,” Someck says. “There’s no way I’d consider Jimbo’s a success if we weren’t deeply involved in our community and didn’t give back as much as we do.”

Source URL: http://newhope360.com/natural-products-expo-west-2015/jimbo-someck

Dig It! Organic Garden Fest, February 28, Escondido Store

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Jimbo’s…Naturally! Receives Silver from EPA’s GreenChill Partnership

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – January 13th, 2015 – For a second year, the Jimbo’s…Naturally! 28,000 sq. ft. downtown San Diego Westfield Horton Plaza store earned the prestigious EPA GreenChill Silver Award.

With this achievement the store continues to cut its refrigeration emissions by 65%. Reducing refrigerant emissions is a significant step to helping our environment. GreenChill certified stores only use refrigerants that do not harm the earth’s ozone layer. Refrigerants have the potential to harm the ozone layer and contain greenhouse gases, which contribute to climate change.

“Jimbo’s…Naturally! continued commitment to achieve GreenChill’s certification standards for its Horton Plaza store proves that the company is serious about its role in protecting the ozone layer and preventing climate change,” said Tom Land, Manager of EPA’s GreenChill Partnership. “It is important that companies understand that helping the environment has become the business model of the future.”

It is Jim “Jimbo” Someck’s passion for the environment that encouraged Jimbo to partner with the EPA. “GreenChill Certification is part of an overall commitment by Jimbo’s…Naturally! to be a responsible community member and steward to the environment. This continued achievement demonstrates our ongoing effort to provide our customers with more than just a great place to shop. We want our customers to be proud of the fact that we continue to make great strides to protect the environment,” said Jimbo.

About:
Jimbo’s…Naturally! is a complete natural foods grocery store. In order to fulfill its mission of providing the highest quality organic and natural foods, Jimbo’s…Naturally! places a strong emphasis on local and organic produce. Jimbo’s…Naturally! also carries a full line of groceries, vitamins, health & beauty aids, hormone-free and antibiotic-free meats, an in-house deli, a made from scratch bakery and a juice bar. Locations include Carmel Valley, Escondido, Carlsbad, 4S Ranch and downtown San Diego at Westfield Horton Plaza.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Kelly Hartford, Director of Marketing
858.793.7755 x114
marketing@jimbos.com

Join us for a free screening of “Fed Up”

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Westfield Horton Plaza Wins Best New Store of the Year!

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Jimbo’s…Naturally! raises over $16,900 for Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center

October 31, 2014
For Immediate Release
Contact Person: Kelly Hartford – 858-793-7755 (marketing@jimbos.com)

San Diego, CA – Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center (OGLC) was designated by Jimbo’s…Naturally! as the beneficiary of its Anniversary Sale held on October 18th. Jimbo’s…Naturally! donated 5% of the entire day’s sales in all 5 stores along with customer donations for a grand total of $16,973 to Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center.
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Funds from the Anniversary Sale will support the Teacher Training Program, which is available to San Diego County teachers. OGLC developed several teacher training academies for school personnel and parents who want to learn more about garden based nutrition education. Trainings include creating and sustaining a school garden and cross curricular lesson planning using the garden as a teaching tool.

“For over 30 years, one of our primary goals has been to educate San Diegans, especially youngsters, about the importance of eating healthy. We need to have a dramatic shift in the way we look at food and what we consume,” said Jim “Jimbo” Someck, founder and owner of Jimbo’s…Naturally!. “ In donating to Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center, we will be furthering our mission with the work they do. I have no doubt that we will dramatically improve the knowledge of many San Diegans in regards to eating healthy. Specifically, in donating to the Teacher Training Program, we will ensure that our children will have a greater understanding of the importance of eating a healthy diet and how they can accomplish that.”

ABOUT JIMBO’S…NATURALLY!
Jimbo’s…Naturally! is a complete natural foods grocery store. In order to fulfill its mission of providing the highest quality organic and natural foods, Jimbo’s…Naturally! places a strong emphasis on local and organic produce. Jimbo’s…Naturally! also carries a full line of groceries, vitamins, health & beauty aids, hormone-free and antibiotic-free meats, an in-house deli, a made from scratch bakery and a juice bar. Locations include Carmel Valley, Escondido, Carlsbad, 4S Ranch and downtown San Diego at Westfield Horton Plaza. To learn more, visit http://jimbos.com.


ABOUT OLIVEWOOD GARDENS AND LEARNING CENTER

The Mission of Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center is to connect and motivate students and families from diverse backgrounds through organic gardening, environmental stewardship, and nutrition education, empowering them to be healthy and active citizens. Their Vision is to reconnect students and families to the natural environment through food, education and community engagement. For more information, visit www.olivewoodgardens.org or call 619.434.4260.

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Jimbo’s…Naturally! to Celebrate Anniversary Sale by Donating Percentage of Sales to Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center

October 13, 2014
For Immediate Release
Contact Person: Kelly Hartford – 858-793-7755 (marketing@jimbos.com)

San Diego, CA – Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center has been designated by Jimbo’s…Naturally! as the beneficiary of its Anniversary Sale which will be held on Saturday, October 18th. Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center will receive 5% of the entire day’s sales from all five Jimbo’s…Naturally! locations. Additionally, customers receive 5% off their purchase, with the option of donating those savings to Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center.

Funds from the Anniversary Sale will support the Teacher Training Program, which is available to San Diego County teachers. Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center has developed several teacher training academies for school personnel and parents who want to learn more about garden based nutrition education. Trainings include creating and sustaining a school garden and cross curricular lesson planning using the garden as a teaching tool.

“It is with great excitement that we are partnering with Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center. For over 30 years, one of our primary goals has been to educate San Diegans, especially youngsters, about the importance of eating healthy. We need to have a dramatic shift in the way we look at food and what we consume,” said Jim “Jimbo” Someck, founder and owner of Jimbo’s…Naturally!. “ In donating to Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center, we will be furthering our mission with the work they do. I have no doubt that we will dramatically improve the knowledge of many San Diegans in regards to eating healthy. Specifically, in donating to the Teacher Training Program, we will ensure that our children will have a greater understanding of the importance of eating a healthy diet and how they can accomplish that. It is our privilege to be able to work with Olivewood to accomplish this.”

ABOUT JIMBO’S…NATURALLY!
Jimbo’s…Naturally! is a complete natural foods grocery store. In order to fulfill its mission of providing the highest quality organic and natural foods, Jimbo’s…Naturally! places a strong emphasis on local and organic produce. Jimbo’s…Naturally! also carries a full line of groceries, vitamins, health & beauty aids, hormone-free and antibiotic-free meats, an in-house deli, a made from scratch bakery and a juice bar. Locations include Carmel Valley, Escondido, Carlsbad, 4S Ranch and downtown San Diego at Westfield Horton Plaza. To learn more, visit http://jimbos.com.


ABOUT OLIVEWOOD GARDENS AND LEARNING CENTER

The Mission of Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center is to connect and motivate students and families from diverse backgrounds through organic gardening, environmental stewardship, and nutrition education, empowering them to be healthy and active citizens. Their Vision is to reconnect students and families to the natural environment through food, education and community engagement. For more information, visit www.olivewoodgardens.org or call 619.434.4260.

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Jimbo’s…Naturally! raises over $14,000 for Kids Healthy BackPack Program

August 29, 2014
For Immediate Release
Contact: Kelly Hartford – 858-793-7755 (marketing@jimbos.com)
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San Diego, CA –From August 4-17, Jimbo’s…Naturally! partnered with SuperFood Drive for a fifth summer to collect healthy food for Feeding America San Diego’s Kids BackPack Program. The BackPack Program serves over 2,500 children weekly at 17 schools around San Diego County. Each child receives an easy-to carry bag filled with nutritious staple items and fresh produce when leaving school each Friday afternoon. This year’s summer SuperFood Drive raised 2,500 pounds of nutrient-dense non-perishable foods for the San Diego community and customers donated an additional $14,631 for SuperFood Drive to purchase specific kids healthy back pack items for Feeding America San Diego.

Jim “Jimbo” Someck, owner of Jimbo’s…Naturally!, is thrilled with the success of the summer
SuperFood Drive. “Our customers recognize the benefits of eating organically – on both their bodies and the environment. Accordingly, we believe that high quality natural foods, especially organics, should be made available to people of all ages. We are grateful for our customers’ generosity and support of SuperFood Drive and Feeding America San Diego.”

ABOUT JIMBO’S…NATURALLY!
Jimbo’s…Naturally! is a complete natural foods grocery store. In order to fulfill its mission of providing the highest quality organic and natural foods, Jimbo’s…Naturally! places a strong emphasis on local and organic produce. Jimbo’s…Naturally! also carries a full line of groceries, vitamins, health & beauty aids, hormone-free and antibiotic-free meats, an in-house deli, a made from scratch bakery and a juice bar. Locations include Carmel Valley, Escondido, Carlsbad, 4S Ranch and downtown San Diego at Westfield Horton Plaza. To learn more, visit http://jimbos.com.

Jimbo’s…Naturally! Hosts 5th Annual Summer SuperFood Drive

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