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Randal Engelmann & Erik Gould

We are Randal Engelmann and Erik Gould, partners in providing exceptional customer service...

We are Randal Engelmann and Erik Gould, partners in providing exceptional customer service...

May 4 7 minutes read

Sladja chats with Ammy Lowney, owner of Juicygreens on how they have adapted to these challenging times in making sure we still get our fresh produce and usual healthy snacks. 


Sladja:
Hello. This Sladja with Focus Real Estate and this is our Zoom edition of Stay Focused. Today I have the pleasure to talk to someone I admire a lot. She's a mother, an entrepreneur, and an owner of Jamaica Plain's Juicy Greens. Welcome Ammy.

Ammy:
Thank you for the introduction. My name is Ammy Lowney. I am the proud owner of Juicy Greens, located in 61 South Street in Jamaica Plain. And we have been around for two years and we provide healthy food, plant-based food to the community around us.

Sladja:
So this Zoom edition of Stay Focused is all about us reaching out to our local small businesses that are highly regarded in our community and checking in. So can you tell us how you've been impacted by today's challenges?

Ammy:
The first couple of weeks was really hard for us at the shop as the foot traffic stopped on our busy South Street, and as a result we had to make changes right away. So some of the things that we had to do was reduce our staff. We had to lay off a couple of people in our team that have been with us for a long time. So that was one of the most difficult decisions we had to make. And a result, less sales. Less foot traffic equals less sales. So we had to change the way how we operated. We started making less prep, less food, to avoid making more purchases. So we started to start saving money. And so that's how it affected us.

Sladja:
Talking about adapting and changing, I would really like to talk about something you started doing a few weeks ago. Please tell me all about your new special service that you're offering in a form of produce bags.

Ammy:
So what we do is we are selling produce bags. When I say produce bags, it's just more than one. You get out of our store with two bags full of produce, full produce and some make-your-own kits that we put together at the shop.

Sladja:
Every week, do you have different produce in your bag?

Ammy:
So every week I go through to see what's available. First I go through what's in season, and mangoes. Mangoes have been in season for the last couple of weeks. So that's why you've been getting a lot of mangoes and it's cheaper. The mangoes, the bigger bulk I buy, the cheaper it's going to be. So that's how I come up with the produce bags.

Sladja:
Another awesome thing that you do actually for everyone who's following in Instagram, please follow Juicy Greens on Instagram. Weekly you're going to jump on Instagram and you're going show us what to do to with some of the produce. So you're going to show us how to prepare food, incorporating the produce that you offer your bag.

Ammy:
Yeah, so that's actually really fun. I get to come up with recipes. So I give you the products and then me and my family, because I'm doing this with my children, so we come up with a live video and then we show you how to use the produce that it's in your bag. So I'm constantly making live videos on how to use all the produce so you don't have to have any waste. And everything, literally everything, even like the skin of the pineapple, I show our customers what to do with the skin of the-

Sladja:
Okay, you're going to have to show me that privately, okay?

Ammy:
Yes. Yes.

Sladja:
So one big thing right now is everyone is concerned about safety, with a very good reason. So what are some steps and measurements that you and your employees are taking to ensure that you continue operating in a very safe manner, because you are still providing us with produce, with food. So what are those steps that you are taking?

Ammy:
So what I did, immediately as soon as when this whole pandemic started, we decided to close the guest access to the shop, to the bathroom, to the sitting areas, way before the city decided to shut down. Because I was reading a lot and I was... These are the steps that are going to happen. So we started implementing those. The first thing we did was change the way how we did business.

Ammy:
So we already had an app, so we started pushing on people, getting the app and placing the orders on online to reduce customers entering our shop. Luckily the majority of the people did that. They downloaded the app. So now everybody orders through the app. So when people go to pick up their food, you notice we have like a shelf, right next to the door. You make one step inside the shop, your food is waiting right there. You see your name, you get your bag, you get your smoothie, you go along.

Ammy:
The second thing we did is again reduce the amount of people at the shop. So normally there are two people at our shop. We have a basement and then we have the upstairs. So there's one person downstairs and then one person upstairs. During the rush time, which is between 12 to 2:00 PM, we have two people upstairs, and six feet and wearing mask and wearing gloves. And the last thing we did is, for example, for the produce bag, only one person touches the produce.

Sladja:
Please go to Juicy Greens... Is it juicygreens.com?

Ammy:
It's juicygreensboston.com.

Sladja:
Juicygreensboston.com. Go there, order your produce bag, order smoothies. I ordered milk with my purchase. I know that there's flour, there's few other things that you can add on which is great. So one less step to the store. I think my last question for today would be what is the message that you would like to send to our community and clients?

Ammy:
So one message I have for people is based on my experience, in the past couple of months in the way with the virus and everything going around, build your immune system. Take care of your immune system. And how are we going to do this? You're going to do this by eating more plant-based meals. By drinking, making your own smoothies at home. If you don't have time to eat eight servings of fruits and veggies, cool. Make yourself a smoothie. Get a cup, a 16 ounce cup and pack it up. You just need a green, you need a fruit, you need something frozen and you need something that's going to change the texture, which is, you like your smoothie thick, then add a frozen banana. If you don't like it thick, then don't add a frozen banana.

Ammy:
So that's my one thing that I have, my message to the community. I hope that everyone is staying healthy and I hope that your relationship with food is what's going to keep you healthy and upbeat and energized and nourished.

Sladja:
Thank you Ammy so much. Thank you for your time. It was really a pleasure chatting with you. And to all of our viewers, until the next time, stay home, stay safe and stay focused. 


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