UPDATE 3/16/20 What The Turnip Truck Is Doing In Response to COVID19

Friends, due to the City and Federal call to action regarding COVID19 virus, and in order to take every precaution we can, we are CLOSING OUR HOT AND COLD BARS at both stores until further notice. Instead, we will make pack-outs of many of those items to provide our customers with access to salad items and warm entrees. The juice bar, produce, butcher, bakery and over-the-counter deli are still open.

To keep our shelves stocked, we have increased our orders by 50% and shipments are coming in each day. Both stores continue to be stocked.

We continue to maintain stringent hand washing requirements, and we are sanitizing surfaces at regular intervals to ensure our products, our staff and our customers are safe.

A note from our founder and owner, John Dyke:

“This month, we have seen once again how Nashvillians rally together after a disaster. With this present health threat, we expect to see the same thing – neighbors coming together to help one another. We will get through this with courage, patience and community spirit.”

What The Turnip Truck Is Doing Regarding COVID19

 

With the WHO declaring COVID-19 a pandemic this week, people worldwide are considering how to stay well.  At the Turnip Truck, we are doing everything in our power to keep our shelves stocked and our employees and customers safe.  We have ramped up our daily sanitation practices, wiping down store surfaces at regular intervals throughout the day.  We are providing hand sanitizer by our front doors and at stations throughout our stores.  Our employees continue to adhere to stringent hand-washing with hot water and soap, as we know that is key to deterring the spread.

We encourage our customers to prepare — not panic.  Our recommendations:

– Adhere to the 20-second handwashing rules — and take it a step further by cleaning mobile devices, keys and other surfaces as often as possible.

– Make sure you have an adequate supply of essential pantry items. This includes necessary supplements and medications, fluids, non-perishable foods and household products.

– Consider your neighbors.  While most people will recover from COVID-19, stopping its spread will save lives of those at highest risk.

Take care of yourself, friends — and let’s try to stay as calm as possible.  Stress wreaks havoc on immunity.  Do whatever you can to destress, in healthy ways.

Clean stores. Washed hands. Open hearts.

Message from John Dyke, owner

 

Hello, all of my friends that reached out last week to check in on me and the Turnip Truck I’m sending a big Thank You with lot’s of Love and Hugs from me and the same from our Turnip Truck Team members. Like many others in Nashville and surrounding counties there was not much sleep and not much peace. Thank you to my wonderful staff that showed up Tuesday morning to get The Turnip Truck fully running within a few hours on a generator. Our team members are focused and driven to make sure that we could get our Local Community space opened for the neighborhood to have a somewhat place of normalcy and to refuel. We are fortunate compared to many that are less than a 100 ft away from us. Tuesday morning I was at the building at 1:00 am trying to figure out how to get a generator on the building. It took us another 13 hours before we could have power and fully pull this together. Currently, we have an additional 70 plus staff members that are hired for our new Local 5001 Charlotte location that was suppose to be opening today. Our goal at that moment was to honor all of the staff with a job. If you are a business owner you know how staff becomes your family the day you hire them. We honor our staff the day we have a tandem mutual agreement that we want to have a relationship to provide a local community market that buys from 90 plus local vendors.

After, we got the 701 Woodland store up on a generator around 2:00 pm we had a call that our 5001 Charlotte location had not taking a direct hit but we took an indirect hit to our warehouse that was located next to John C Tune airport. Adam Williams our CFO and I decided to drive by the warehouse to check in. We had been told earlier in the day the warehouse was flattened and that the majority of our equipment probably was in total loss. For some reason I had to believe that just maybe we could find some pieces to get the store up and running if we can find pieces to just get open. As we arrived I thought there was no way with a building collapsed and most of the steel mangled beyond what you could imagine. As we started to look around we did find pieces that were still crated but buried so deep or tossed over the side of a hill. My senses went into complete overdrive to start digging and dig more. I rallied my partner Gabe LaDuke and Whitney Hulette and we gloved up and started digging. Piece by piece we found this piece and another piece. Mostly damaged but not beyond operational. I knew at that time we could now work hard over the several days of digging a gently pulling items out that we could possibly get this store open in a few weeks. We are missing still several critical items but as usual our team always figures it out how to make things work. Our COO Kim Totzke and our store director Robin Fugett are in full force getting the team together operationally. With some setbacks we will be cleaning our store this weekend and eagerly waiting Monday morning for our first order of dry grocery that will be placed on the shelves next week. Our team over the next couple of weeks will be working long days to build a new Local market for the West side of Nashville. It feels good that we are close to be able to bring in cash to pay the new additional 70 plus members. The Turnip Truck staff are dreamers and builders of communities.

We will with determination and drive hopefully have this store opened in the next couple of weeks. We will not opened with a fully polished building that we have worked almost two years in dreaming but we will open a beautiful store with some scratches and bruises. We will have check out lanes that will have a ding or a piece missing. But what you will see is a building that is inspired by the Spirit of Nashville. Yes, it will have some bruises here and there. But what it will have is the spirit, determination and local food that we all love. It will be the community’s store that will listen to how they want to see their store. We just happen to own the store but we want the community to speak of what they want to see in our version of a local community store.

Let’s all take time as we go into the future what has made and makes Nashville great. My version and I know for many is the spirit of local businesses, restaurants, coffee shops, small stores etc… Let’s all keep this spirit alive. When we think of local owned remember we keep up to 67% of all money in Nashville instead of allowing that money to float outside of Nashville. I just say that is “Local Nashville Strong.”

I ,also, want to thank Crain Construction for sending in large equipment and workers to help on Friday. Z our marketing director and Amy Hall Jones for helping keep my sanity in line over the last week.

Lastly, I appreciate my partner Gabe LaDuke and our friends Jean Fortin, Michael Mikail, Bruce Stuart and Lemon giving me great evening just being with friends for an amazing Dinner and Concert. Overall my 55th birthday turned out great.

Best Regards,

John

 

Tornado Impacts Upon Local Food Supply Chain

 

We appreciate Jeremy Finley from WSMV Channel 4 News for highlighting the challenges to Nashville’s food supply chain due to the tornado and the COVID-19 virus. Check out his report in the link.

Rest assured, the Turnip Truck is open and fully operational now that power is restored at our East Nashville location. Our top priority is serving Nashville, and we are doing everything in our power to keep our shelves stocked and support public safety.

Click here to view the segment.

 

 

Turnip Truck Open After Storm – Charlotte Ave Store Opening is Delayed

TURNIP TRUCK EAST OPEN AFTER THE STORM, WHILE CHARLOTTE AVE STORE OPENING IS DELAYED

– Nashville’s Locally Owned Natural Grocer Keeps Doors Open for East Nashville –

– Tornado Destroyed Equipment for New West Nashville Location –

NASHVILE, Tenn. – Despite roof damage to the East Nashville store and losing significant equipment for the Charlotte location, Turnip Truck founder and owner John Dyke is determined to keep serving his East Nashville neighbors as the city recovers from Tuesday’s tornadoes.

“We have been running the store off a generator since the storm hit,” Dyke said. “I have lived in 5 Points for decades and founded Turnip Truck here in 2001. Our neighbors and our businesses need the city’s support now more than ever.”

Nashville’s locally owned natural foods grocer, Turnip Truck was set to open its third location on Charlotte Avenue this month.  That opening is now delayed, due to the warehouse holding equipment for the store, near John C. Tune airport, being demolished in Tuesday’s storms.

“Not only did we lose the equipment, we also have hired staff for that store – and we desperately want to keep them on our payroll,” Dyke said.

Dyke said the costs of equipment replacement, roof restoration and running a grocery store off a generator are mounting.  He invites his neighbors to seek refuge at the store and appeals to Nashvillians to support locally owned businesses affected by the storms.

“First and foremost, we want our neighbors to know they are welcome to come here to recharge phones, or just rest and regroup in our large dining area upstairs,” Dyke said. “For those making their way to help clean up East Nashville, we invite them to come refuel at Turnip Truck. East Nashville needs your business now more than ever as we all recover together.”

Customers can count on the most local food available, with produce sourced within 200 miles. In any season, a full 90 percent – often more – of Turnip Truck’s produce is organic.  Other products such as local grass-fed meats, supplements and packaged foods are sourced for their lack of artificial colors, sweeteners, fillers, preservatives, thickeners or additives.

Dyke opened the original Turnip Truck Natural Market on Woodland Street in East Nashville in 2001. The East Tennessee native grew up on a family farm and sought to bring the health and wellness benefits of locally produced foods to his Nashville neighborhood.

ABOUT TURNIP TRUCK

Founded in 2001 by John Dyke, Turnip Truck is Nashville’s only full-service locally owned natural foods grocer. Specializing in local, natural and organic foods and products, the store has locations in East Nashville, the Gulch and Charlotte Pike. To learn more, visit theturniptruck.com.