Grocery Wars

Trader Joe’s Rejects Downtown, But Maybe New Farmers Market Rules Can Help

Say it ain't so, Joe!
Say it ain’t so, Joe! Photo: Joe and Jeanette Archie via Flickr

Residents from Silver Lake to Downtown (what are we calling that these days, Eastside-Adjacent?) must be feeling pretty dissed by the organic grocers of the world. At the start of September, it was Whole Foods that was all like “Sorry Silver Lake, we’d love to charge you too much for pre-heated daal, beeswax candles, and that natural deodorant scented like B.O., but it just ain’t happening.” Now, it looks like Trader Joe’s is giving the same line to Downtown, which has clamored for a Joe’s location of its own.

Brigham Yen reports that Trader Joe’s is giving a polite “Oh really Downtown, we’d love to, but you know, the 110 Freeway is just such a mess in the evenings.” Yep, Joe’s tells Yen that it’s not in the company’s three-year plan to open in the neighborhood, which means our city center won’t be getting a store.

Is the business forgetting where it came from? Despite its rampant spread beyond Cali borders to the East Coast and many points in between, it won’t grant Downtowners their one wish, after all they live through. It’s not necessarily the best decision for Joe’s, who will miss out on the neighborhood’s well-financed revival, though they’ll probably survive.

Meanwhile, Daily News L.A. reports that sweet relief could arrive in the form of new, relaxed farmers market regulations. In the past, markets could only be organized in residential zones on property that “services a church, school, or philanthropic entity.” The new regulations open the door for certified farmer’s markets to operate almost anywhere in residential zones, potentially opening the floodgates for new markets and vendor assemblages between apartment buildings and even in homeowners’ front yards, if they acquire the correct permits.

So, sorry Trader Joe’s. Considering Downtown in your next three-year plan could be too late. And whose going to feel rejected then? So…HA!

Trader Joe’s Snubs Downtown LA: “Not in 3-Year Plan” [Brigham Yen via Eater]
City easing restrictions on farmers markets [Daily News L.A.]

Trader Joe’s Rejects Downtown, But Maybe New Farmers Market Rules Can Help