By Danielle Coots
For Greene County News
BEAVERCREEK — Jeff Schmitt Lawn and Motor Sports recently donated a Kubota tractor to Fresh Thyme Market for display throughout the Thanksgiving season, demonstrating what it means to offer neighborly help.
“Whenever we can partner with somebody, we take that opportunity,” Fresh Thyme Store Director Adam Slater said. “Whether it’s the schools or another business, we just want to help support local businesses,”
Many stores, such as Fresh Thyme Market, are reaching out to other small business owners to sell their products. Warped Wing brewery, Mama Disalvo’s and perhaps the farm from down the street have taken part in partnerships with Fresh Thyme Market, offering customers more opportunities to find foods lacking preservatives and pesticides. In the past, purchasing local foods and products was not as easy, according to Slater.
“I think it’s great that Jeff Schmidt supports us,” Slater said. “It’s part of being a community and supporting each other and it’s a way for us to help recognize and cross-promote their business as well. Plus, it adds something exciting to our store. Many customers have been found to be taking selfies with the tractor and display. So, it makes it fun.”
Not only does the partnership between Jeff Schmitt Lawn and Motor Sports and Fresh Thyme Market provide a display within the store and means for Jeff Schmitt Lawn and Motor Sports to advertise that it sells farm equipment, it also attracts local farmers to take interest in possibly becoming involved as a a vendor of the local markets.
“I grew up in Adams County, a large farming community, where we took produce to a local farmer’s market,” Fresh Thyme Employee Philip Mineer said. “This store (Fresh Thyme Market) was built to look like a farmer’s market and to have the same feel. We want to attract farmers that have those small farms.”
“When a farmer is interested in contributing to our store, we have questionnaire for them to complete then we send them to our corporate office. Next thing we know, we’re moving their products in and selling it in our store,” Mineer added.
Fresh Thyme employee Jenny Vanbibber said that she was told that a woman had recently purchased a head of lettuce from the market. While the customer’s daughter was cleaning the lettuce, she was startled that the lettuce contained a worm. Vanibibber said that having a worm in the lettuce was a good thing because it meant it didn’t contain pesticides.
“The tractor helps generate that same atmosphere that helps bring the country back to the city,” Mineer said.
Danielle Coots | Greene County News Fresh Thyme Market’s latest display thanks to the help of Jeff Schmitt. Pictured are: Adam Slater, Store Manager, Jenny Vanbibber and Philip Mineer.