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Kim Bradford, store owner

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Tucked away off Highway 73, The Bradford Store provides an array of hand-selected produce, prepared foods, and specialty items from regional farms and suppliers. Many "regulars" come in each week to pick up fresh milk (from the cow two days before) and place orders for freshly baked organic breads. Kim Bradford, the store's co-owner, makes many trips herself to local markets and farms to pick her products – in fact, she just made a trip to pick her own peaches in South Carolina.

Creative Loafing: With consumers becoming more aware and interested in the quality of products and organic eating, how has your business been affected?

Kim Bradford: Customers are concerned about their products, especially with the salmonella scare from tomatoes. The push for local has increased ... our customers know us and our suppliers are providing the freshest products possible. Fresh produce from local farmers is better than organic produce shipped from California -- it is actually fresh.

How do you reduce, reuse and recycle within your business?

We don't let anything go to waste. If a product is starting to age but is still good, Food Rescue [a local food bank] picks it up to distribute to a church in Concord. We do not let our produce go to waste. All of the corn shucks go to the cows in the barn -- making them very happy -- and all other usable products will not be wasted.

What are some of your favorite specialty items for sale at The Bradford Store?

Our goat cheese from Goat Lady Dairy is outstanding and a favorite. We carry fresh eggs and fresh milk, a variety of Yah's Homemade Salsa, and a great selection of local honey and molasses. All of the items are from within the region, supporting local producers and farmers.

For more information about The Bradford Store, visit: www.thebradfordstore.com.

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