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Sharing the organic passion

Listening to customers' feedback and being hands-on is the secret of Passionfoods' success.

Top tips

  • Always be hands-on in the business
  • Work in your business
  • Listen to what the customers want to buy in your store

The business

When Steven and Sharlene Klotnick started looking for a new business adventure they stumbled across Passionfoods. A friend who was a business agent said that this business had Steven and Sharelene’s name on it. After meeting with him, they fell in love with the business and knew what they could do to build on what had already been done so far. The business had been running for about 14 years when they bought it and now Passionfoods is in its 21st year of trading. ‘We love the organic health food industry  and every day we face new challenges as more young people start discovering why they should be taking the healthy options’.

Passionfoods is a South Melbourne institution. Located just across the footbridge at South Melbourne market, the popular eco store draws customers attracted by the ability to find all they need for their organic life in one store.

The store has introduced a large variety of raw foods and soon will be having a smoothie and fresh juice bar. Passionfoods has one of the largest organic ranges in Australia and has won ‘Best Organic Store’ in Australia 2 years in a row after voting by 5 independent judges. ‘Our passion for health has led to a belief that in today's fast paced world, you need to give your body the best possible chance by eating organic and removing harmful chemicals from your life as early and as quickly as possible. I enjoy working with people who share my passion for the environment, recycling and living an eco lifestyle’ says Steven.

The advice

What were some challenges you faced when starting up the business?

When we bought the business we had to do a lot of remerchandising and reorganising of the store so that it could all flow correctly. We faced having to delete a lot of lines and bring in more organic lines and also finding out what the customers were wanting to have in the store.

What is the best thing about being a small business owner?

Being a small business allows you to be hands on every day and we are able to change things around quickly like bringing in new stocks, remerchandising the store.

Best success moment?

When we won ‘Best Organic Store’ two years in a row and when we launched our online store.

The result

Passionfoods is an award-winning business with its busy South Melbourne store and an online store. Steven and Sharlene make sure they are hands on in the business so they can hear what their customers want and stock the store accordingly.