The company’s perception of organic, however, has changed more dramatically.
“We no longer think of it as a necessary evil,” Duello said.
“We all used to look at as, ‘More shrink, more to manage, the costs are high.’ We’re to the point now where the prices are more comparable, and sales are good.”
Young people are the target audience for organic, and those young people are Dierbergs customers for the next 20-30 years, Duello said.
H.R. Bushman & Son, a broker on the St. Louis Produce Market, sources organic potatoes out of its Golden, Colo., office, but at its St. Louis headquarters, the company is sticking to conventional, said Sal Pupillo, co-owner.
“You can’t be everything to everybody,” he said.
“With organics you have to be really careful about cross-contamination.”