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Natural Awakenings Charlotte

Gastonia's Organic Marketplace is WholeFoods Magazine’s 2023 Retailer of the Year

Organic Marketplace, in Gastonia, North Carolina, has been announced as WholeFoods Magazine’s 2023 Retailer of the Year. The store, also celebrating its 30th anniversary, has recently been renovated and offers high-quality nutritional supplements, bulk foods, home goods, beauty products, pet products, wine, and beer, with many of them locally sourced.

“I initially opened an 800-square-foot supplement shop and quickly understood that supplements did not fully address the needs of my customers,” shares owner Renée Southard. “After working with customers and listening to requests from the community, I expanded into organic foods and HABA (health and beauty aids) to more adequately address healthy living, which resulted in relocating Organic Marketplace to a 5,000-square-foot location in 2003.” 

For those with dietary restrictions, OMP provides a variety of foods that are non-GMO, gluten- & wheat-free, low-sodium, low-sugar, and keto. OMP recently re-branded its private label with an eye-catching tie-dye label. It also offers Sprouts Café’s organic foods, juices, and smoothies.

Protecting the environment has been a focus as they have been bag-free for eight years, strive for minimal packaging, and have a staff member serve on the board of Keep Gastonia Beautiful. Southard supports independent natural products retailers as president of SENPA, a nonprofit natural products trade association, which empowers members with up-to-date product and legislative awareness and helpful marketing tools. 


Location: 1012 S. New Hope Rd. For more information, call 704-864-0605 or visit

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