Our Commitment to Sustainability
November 11, 2016 (From TBNewsWatch). For co-owner's David and his sister Lisa Maltese, the success of the family store comes from not only their staff but the customers.
About six months ago, the Maltese family began a $1.5 million expansion that would double the size of the small grocery store.
On Friday Maltese reopened after shutting down for, in their minds, a lengthy three weeks.
“The renovations couldn’t have been complete without the staff and dedicated customers who come every day,” said Lisa.
“Both the customers and the staff are our family, and that’s who we see every day of our lives.”
Throughout the days leading up the grocery store’s reopening, both the staff and customers were walking through the backdoor lending a helping out.
“We had customers that actually walked through the backdoor, and just showed up to work. They helped us load the shelves and they helped us throw out garbage,” Lisa said.
“It was happening every day, all day long. The support was just incredible.”
Lisa added that the staff were even driving in from holidays and worked 17 hours straight, chiseling the floor, sweeping, and taking out the garbage.
They came back the next day to do it all over again to ensure the store’s opening day would be Friday. “We have the most incredible staff that Thunder Bay has to offer."
David said the hardest part of the expansion was the three week shut down.
“We could see our customers coming to the door, which killed us, but we did this for our customers,” David said.
“Thunder Bay has been so good to us. The store has been here since 1931.”
Throughout the expansion the Maltese family was worried about losing the store’s atmosphere.
The family was pleased to hear the outpouring comments about the store remaining a neighbourhood corner store only a whole lot more.
David said in the New Year the family will begin manufacturing a lot of their own products and they will be bringing in a lot of local products as well.
“We created this (store), so local places could showcase their products seven days a week,” David said.
“It keeps it local and we keep investing in each other. That’s how this city is going to survive and thrive.”
Lisa and Dave at Maltese Grocery