The Eighth Day – Manchester’s independent vegetarian cafe and healthfood shop – threw open its doors on July 4 to celebrate Independents’ Day and Co-operatives Fortnight.
The Oxford Road based co-operative business is celebrating four decades of independent retailing in the city and has recently been awarded ‘Best Independent Retailer’ in the Natural & Organic Awards 2013.
At a time when many retailers are facing increasing challenges on the high street, Ursula Gothard of the Eighth Day says innovation and focus on changing consumer needs has been key to their success.
“The Eighth Day has always been a strong ethical business and this is very important to many of our customers, but over the years we have always kept pace with changing customer demands and adapted our business to suit.
“We have seen large supermarket chains increasingly encroaching on our territory by stocking more vegetarian and organic products, but being 100% vegetarian still pays dividends for us, as our customers know that we have sourced the best vegetarian products available.”
For example, the Eighth Day has stayed ahead of the competition by sourcing special vegetarian products such as nutritional supplements, vegan wines, raw foods and cruelty-free body care products. Many of the products stocked are only available in Manchester at the Eighth Day.
Says Ursula: “Over 80% of the products we stock are supplied by independent businesses and this ethos is important to us and our customers.”
Sales of organic and quality foods have held steady during the recession and the Eighth Day has even grown staff numbers over the past few years, in spite of the economic situation.