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Grocery Stores

Multiple Organics

Posted by Tim / Posted on July 20, 2008

Multiple OrganicsI've been eying Multiple Organics for a while now but it wasn't until someone prodded me with an email that I decided it was about time to go inside for a closer look.

Located on Dundas West in the old location of Extreme Games, Multiple Organics is not your typical stocked to the ceiling health food store in the mold of, say, Essence of Life or Tutti Frutti in Kensington Market. Instead, the store is relatively sparsely laid out with sections for fresh organic and local produce, canned goods, pasta and sauces, baby food, eco-friendly products, frozen foods, milk and cheese.

Multiple Organics is the brain child of Nupur Gogia and Carrianne Leung, two recent PhD grads of Sociology and Equity Studies at the University of Toronto. They started the store after recognizing a need in gentrifying Brockton Village and looking for a challenge beyond the academic world. Open since June 1st, they have quickly established themselves as the neighbourhood grocery and have a notepad on the counter where customers can request new items for them to carry. Among the recent suggestions I noticed were goat's milk yogurt and Amy's gluten free pizza.

Organic VegetablesLooking around the store on this day I spot some super fresh looking local produce (delivered Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays) especially the portobello mushrooms, tomatoes, broccoli, carrots, garlic and strawberries. Some of it is organic, and what isn't is local, brought in by Sovereign Farms among other local suppliers.

On the shelves are familiar items like Kettle Chips, Eden Soy Milk, Bandito's popcorn, Mapleton's Organic ice cream, cheese from Monforte dairy and green cleaning products from Ecover and Nature Clean.

They have also begun talking special orders for meat from Rowe Farms so that customers can get fresh chicken, steaks and pork chops by request. Prices are neither high nor low, about what you'd expect from a specialty grocery and purveyor of organic products.

More photos:

Organic Strawberries

Organic Broccoli

Organic Produce

Organic Soy Milk

Grocery Shelf

Pasta

Organic Milk

Gluten Free Lasagna

Organic Ice Cream

Chips

Cheese

Cereal

Organic Baby Food

Eco Cleaning

Multiple Organics Outside

Discussion

19 Comments

Greg Smith / July 21, 2008 at 09:39 am
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Any word on the story behind the 'multiple' in the name? I'm curious. Their sign seems to say multipleorganics.ca, but there doesn't seem to be anything there yet.
michelle / July 21, 2008 at 01:37 pm
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Anything vegan friendly, other than vegetables?
Tim / July 21, 2008 at 01:49 pm
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Yep. They've got quite a few soy and other vegan products...Anything from frozen foods to canned goods. A good selection of tofu
somechick / July 22, 2008 at 02:46 pm
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This store looks alright, I have no issues with it...execpt that after this opens, so will an arty video store, a hipster cafe/sandwhich shop, a nameless bar with no sign but has a "cool" vibe, some Feist-ish girl vinatge store and a gallery, then a starbucks....you know the story...then come the bugaboo strollers, and the dreaded lofts....
michelle / July 23, 2008 at 02:20 pm
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They're already building lofts in the area...
thegory / July 23, 2008 at 08:26 pm
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somechick: was that a Leslieville dig??
Human Fly / July 25, 2008 at 08:57 pm
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@somechick the video store is there already - it's called "West Side Stories". Not so arty, more LGBTQ. The hipster cafe/sandwich shop is there, too. It's called She Takes The Cake, but you can also get some good sandwiches and coffee at Brazil Bakery. The nameless bar is currently being built, should be open in a month or so. No vintage store yet. The gallery is next to Lula Lounge and of course there Jessica Bradley Art + Projects a bit further East which has been there for awhile. No Starbucks yet. A few strollers. And as michelle pointed out the condos are going up soon.

If all that doesn't scare you away from the neighbourhood, try the baked samosas and the home-made Indian takeout - you'll love it. I like having neighbourhood supplier of ideal coffee, too.
nodive / July 25, 2008 at 09:42 pm
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so somechick...should small, independent shops offering good things not open for fear of development? come on! look around the area. there's already lofts and all the "dreaded" businesses within a 15 minute walking radius. don't think that if this store had not opened that greedy developers will stay away. why shouldn't this store be there to offer to-die-for curries,mostly local and or organic food etc. in the neighborhood? you know how many friends and folks in the neighborhood i've bumped into at this store and how happy they are that the store exists? isn't it better to buy organic milk and tofu at this store than going to big 'ol dominion?
nodive / July 25, 2008 at 09:48 pm
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human fly.........HERE HERE!! TO GOOD FOOD.
Cherie Lunau-Jokisch / July 27, 2008 at 03:27 pm
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Sorry to say I own a store called Beadle, kitty corner from MO. I've been here for about 2 years. I welcome all new businesses cause this area does need some cleaning up. Besides it is the only area that isn't too sketchy that independant businesses can afford to set up shop. If gentrification is next I say good better than the sketchy store fronts that are boarded up or the bars that have drunk fighting men hanging out all hours of the day. We have a wonderfully hard working Business Association, and a local neighbourhood group. This area is wonderful and only going to get better. Sorry Tim if this offends you as that is not my intention but this area has huge changes a comin.

check out
www.beadlestore.com
www.dundaswestbia.blogspot.com
Cherie / July 27, 2008 at 03:31 pm
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Oopsie sorry Tim I looked at the comments wrong. My comment was more meant for somechick...so sorry!
/ August 3, 2008 at 10:13 pm
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I'm a regular at Multiple Organics. Some of my favourites: gluten free waffles (they really taste like waffles!), Mapleton ice cream and Monforte's Chiplotle sheep cheese. Mmmm.
Jenny / October 1, 2008 at 05:08 pm
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When I go inside M.O. I am really excited to have local or organic foods to choose from. I love not having the hassle of looking at all the lables and signs in the big box grocery stores to make my conscious decisions. Although, at the end of my grocery shopping at M.O. I feel somewhat unsatisfied and I can't figure it out. Maybe it was the oranges not being organic or local(or were they?) Or perhaps it's because I had my heart set on kale and I knew it was in season but couldn't find it on the shelf. I really like the special order meats and all of the selection in the dry food shelves and fridges. I will continue to support you in the neighbourhood with a little more of an open mind.
/ October 4, 2008 at 06:14 pm
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Hi Jenny,

Thanks so much for your support! In elaborating on your comments re: the fresh produce - it isn't easy for us to carry green leafy vegetables like kale because we don't have the refrigeration facilities to accomodate them. We have tried to carry various lettuces and spinach in the past but they are quite fragile and therefore don't have a very long shelf life (sometimes, a matter of hours). We hate to have to throw away any food so we've made the decision on focusing on the produce that we do well according to our space. In terms of organic or local - the top shelf is always local but not necessarily organic. Some of it is hydroponic. The bottom two shelves are always organic and when the season permits, as much local as we can find. (Oranges, unfortunately, are never local...)

Best, Carrianne
fairtradegirl / October 8, 2008 at 12:07 pm
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Has anyone tried any of the Fair Trade Arayuma teas? So good! And they come in the cutest boxes. I'm also a big fan of the Mapleton's ice cream...
alexis replying to a comment from Greg Smith / December 11, 2008 at 10:19 am
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greg: pretty sure the store name "multiple organics" is a play on words...
jewels replying to a comment from michelle / January 16, 2009 at 12:25 pm
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michelle - where are the lofts going up? and where are the condos going up? and the new bar (that isn't where all the portugeuse men hang out - not that I mind but its kind of nice to have one that is a little bit more open!)

jewels
Beadle / April 17, 2009 at 05:30 pm
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Jewels - the lofts are going up on Dundas just west of the Scotia bank on the north side. They are calling them Azul condos.

Try Zoots Cafe the owners a so down to earth and friendly. They have grilled sandwiches and calflutie (spelling?) pastries. They don't do that crazy latte art stuff just really good ones.

I have a tiny boutique/shop called Beadle (Canadian handmade items) across from Lula and live at the same location. I love living here. I feel like I'm living in a small town. I know dozens of my neighbours by name and dozens still by face. It's fun to be able to talk and smile at people and not feel like a stranger in your own area. Multiple Organics rocks the area is becoming trendy but not gentrified. I'm hoping it continues like this!
Sage Tyrtle / December 14, 2009 at 09:47 am
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I have no idea how this place can be 1/4 the size of The Big Carrot and still have every single thing I want, but it absolutely does. And the prices are pretty damn good too.

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