- After 10 years in business, Philadelphia-based Green Aisle Grocery will cease operations Jan. 31, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported. The gourmet market currently operates two locations in the city.
- The grocery store was founded as a "side hustle" by brothers and food entrepreneurs Andrew and Adam Erace, who have since gone on to author cookbooks and host shows on the Food Network and Philadelphia’s PBS affiliate.
- Green Aisle’s compact storefronts focused on organic, local and gourmet foods and carried local brands such as Ric’s Breads, Hillacres Pride and Three Springs.
In a statement posted to the company’s Instagram account, the Eraces said a great deal has changed in the last decade for local and organic food retailers. Products that were once considered specialty or hard-to-find are now widely available.
"The increased availability of this kind of food is a very good thing, and we like to think we played a very small role in that, but it’s also made it harder to sustain our tiny shops in the face of well-funded corporate competition," the statement said.
The company noted that one of its location on Philadelphia’s Grays Ferry Avenue now sits between a Giant and an Amazon depot, which has made operations particularly challenging.
In addition to more corporate competition as mainstream grocers add local and organic products, Philadelphia is now the home of Giant Heirloom Market, which has quickly taken off as Giant Food Stores looks to cater to individual neighborhoods in the competitive city.
Once voted the best gourmet market in Philadelphia by Philadelphia Magazine, Green Aisle has received accolades for its chef-quality product selection and artisanal house-made products like rhubarb-thyme jam and sauerkraut fermented in honey buckets. The first location was just 206 square feet and "stacked floor-to-ceiling" with goods, according to Edible Philly.
The original store opened in 2009 and was followed by a second location in 2014 and a third in 2015 that closed in 2017. Adam Erace is now working on a third cookbook while Andrew Erace is filming the second season of "Movers & Makers" for Philadelphia’s PBS station, the Inquirer reported.