Small Business Startup: Hunner’s Market

From left, Kelsey Flora; Mary Gilmore Arnot; John Arnot; Lori Arnot and Annie Arnot stand for a photo. Kara Dry/NNY Business

As the village of Clayton becomes a destination for beautiful sights, unique boutiques and health and wellness centers, a husband and wife team have added to this growing list of shopping options.

Lori and John Arnot are not new to owning successful businesses. The two, both independently, started their own wellnesss center, River Wellness, and pottery studio, St. Lawrence Pottery. They also both ran and volunteered at the local co-op that was valued by locals but hard to staff with volunteers, which prompted Mr. Arnot to purchase the health food store and turn it into Hunner’s Market.

“It turns out that volunteerism isn’t as strong of an ethic as we were hoping it would be,” said Mrs. Arnot. “About a year ago, John bought the co-op. He was ready to get out of the pottery business and so he took a deep dive into natural foods and it’s been awesome.”

Hunner’s Market, located at 720 John Street in Clayton, specializes in fresh, local, healthy and organic foods. It is their mission to provide a sustainable, community market of wholesome foods with an emphasis on healthy, locally produced products and they have created just that.

“We have lots of local support. But, as you know, being a thriving summer community, we get a lot more business in the summer,” said Mrs. Arnot. “People are so grateful to have a focus on natural, organic and local products. We have gluten–free, dairy–free, vegan or even keto foods all with the focus on local and organic.”

Mrs. Arnot says that when sourcing the foods they have available at Hunner’s Market, they first seek out the products they can find from local businesses, growers and producers. This includes everything from meats and vegetables grown locally to honey and bees wax candles, to peanut brittle and more.

“We get awesome bread, that we have a hard time keeping in stock, from New Jersey and Brooklyn,” explained Mrs. Arnot. “They ship it to us frozen and we get told it is the best bread that anybody has ever had.”

The market also includes dried goods that can be purchased loosely by bringing in your own containers, teas, coffees, cleaning products, extracts for baking and cooking and other goods that promote health and wellness for the mind and body.

But that is not all and the Arnots are planning on expanding.

“Our Hunner’s kitchen crew is killing it,” said Mrs. Arnot. “The food is amazing that is being turned out by our staff and it makes you feel good after eating it.”

What Mrs. Arnot is referring to is their in-house prepared soups, sandwiches and specialty lunch items. Each day the staff prepares two soups, brews locally roasted coffee, prepares unique sandwiches and wraps and even has tapped into two local food authors, Kristen Taylor and Liz Price–Kellogg, who wrote the book For “The Love Of Food And Yoga.”

“There are some traditional things that the staff make, like egg salad, but there is also our Chick–A–Can Salad, which Kristen Taylor and Liz Price–Kellog came up with as a recipe in their book,” said Mrs. Arnot.

She says that people are happy that there are other options that they can find locally and they plan on expanding to facilitate more lunch and dinner options.

“John plans on opening the other side of the market to create a cafe experience. We won’t have made-to-order sandwiches right away, but that will be in the future,” she explained. “We are also hoping to create an outdoor space, that during the summertime, can allow for people to sit and eat outside.”

She continued that they also are constantly seeking more local producers and goods to feature at Hunner’s Market.

“Right now we have about 70% of their products coming from outside of New York state, I would like to flip that number to 70% in New York state,” she said. “If there are people that are selling or producing locally, we are interested in what they have. They can get in touch with us by email or call or stop in and talk with John here at the market.”

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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