Good People Make Good Food: Supporting Small Business in Uncertain Times

Good People Make Good Food: Supporting Small Business in Uncertain Times

Posted by Theobroma Cacao on

First, a shout out to our buds at @Detroit_Foodies who took this delicious-even-to-the-eyes photo of all of these rad Detroit based brands all snuggled up in this lil backpack situation!

I have always been proud of the Midwestern, or perhaps even uniquely Detroit capacity to make something out of nothing. Ingenuity is in our veins and we have a history of hard work so around here, a small local input is a uniquely powerful investment.

Times are uncertain and the food industry is already feeling the very real impacts of the Coronavirus Pandemic fallout. It's a difficult and likely very tight time for your favorite local small food business. Decreased sales quickly threaten our very existence, the projects we believe in and most importantly, our ability to provide for the teams that we call family. Restaurants, counter service spots, and good food manufacturers often employ some of the most vulnerable members of our communities. Emergency funds and contingency plans are being re-worked and pushed to their limits. The reality is, many small businesses will not have the capacity to wait for or gain access to governmental relief in time to keep their operations afloat. I don't say this to scare you, but instead to rev you up! Now more than ever, we appreciate the support of our customers and community. If there is a small food business, or any business, that you love, this is a very important time to show it. It may be easier and have a greater impact than you think.

Showing your support can be totally free. Like photos, comment, follow and share on social media or text a recommendation to a friend. Heck, if you've got a sec, write a quick email to a company you totally fangirl. It might feel a little weird, but messages like those are a needed reprieve from landlords, lawyers, bankers, bills, and anxious salespeople trying to pitch. Don't hesitate to reach out.

Carefully consider your requests for donations or free stuff. At Bon Bon Bon, we receive between 4-7 donations or "can you send me free stuff" requests a day, often amounting to more in asks than we make in sales. It can be stressful to read, sort and respond in a way that allows us to continue to make ends meet. Irrelevant requests ccan take bandwidth from important internal projects that support the most vulnerable members of our own teams. There are so many great community efforts and the reality is, we often don't even have the resources support the ones we love the most. Think about if your ask is truly a good fit for the company you are asking for help or free stuff from. And if it is, consider asking for product at cost or for a discount instead of for free. And, don't be offended or re-ask again and again and again if your request is declined. It is likely that money, product, funds, time, or resources you want are needed by the company that earned them, to keep someone employed or to keep the company afloat. A "no" is not personal, it's just another hard decision on the path to doing the best we can do with what we have at the time.

When you can buy, do! According to the SBA, every dollar you spend at a small business creates an additional $.50 of additional impact on the local community. And we know our community is going to need as much love as it can get. We're lucky because in our community,“where nearly everything American and great came from,” (Anthony Bourdain said in 2013), there's some especially cool things to buy. Whether it's your neighborhood Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese or Italian Spot, or your favorite kimchi, jam, preserves or grocery item, consider making a local purchase, if you can. We compiled a list of some of our favorite local food spots and brands along with ideas of how to keep come cash flow going for each of them. If you know a company that you would like to have added to this list, please do let us know by emailing us at including their name and a link!

Check em out:

Chef Allie Lyttle has put together a GoFundMe for the local Detroit Hospitality Workers that need it the most!

Detroit Vegan Soul -

Sister Pie -

Marrow -

Order ahead at Good Cakes & Bakes -

Grab a Gift Card from Johnny Noodle King -

Order from Sweet Potato Sensations -

Pickup a gift card you know you'll use later to Cutter's Bar and Grill -

Detroit City Distillery has gift cards!

Get Fat Salmon delivered!

While you're stocking up on groceries, grab a Lemon Butta Pie!

Grab a gift card for Folk -

Sport some Two James gear while you work from home -

Stock up on tamales from Tamaleria Nuevo Leon -

Order Ima online -!/

Snag some swag from Rose's Fine Food -

Buy some Astro Coffee!

Get delivery from Louisiana Creole Gumbo -

Mudgie's -

Make reservations for a summer dinner at Grey Ghost -

Plan for breakfast later at Dime Store -

Street Beet -

Metaphysica -

Takoi -

Anthology Coffee Subscription -

Make a reso for later at Flowers of Vietnam -

Shop online at Monger's Provisions -

Send someone you hoped to celebrate with a giftbox from Rocco's in your place -

Pay up front for a bicuit and coffee at Avalon -

Grab a gift card at Magnet -

Get some xochomilco's delivered -

Amar pizza. Best for last. -

Oh, and while you're here - send a box of chocolate to someone you love

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