From yacht chef to food-delivery-service founder, Paul Allen has spent years sharing healthy and tasty foods. He recently increased his efforts by opening Farm 2 Counter, a convenience store specializing in organic and local grab-and-go options in Springfield, Missouri. “I call us the Williams Sonoma of convenience stores,” Allen says, “because we’re not a grocery store, but it’s our take on it.”

After finding the location several months ago – which was previously a traditional convenience store – Allen and his wife, Ashley, decided to repurpose part of it as a retail space. Today, with stained concrete floors and stainless steel-and-wood shelving, the store is sleek and fresh.

The small store packs a ton of local finds, including a rainbow of fresh produce, often sourced from nearby farms; a best-seller is honey with the comb from an Amish community in Dunnegan, Missouri. There are bags of coffee from Ozark Mountain Coffee Co., zucchini relish, black beans, treats from Springfield-based The Date Lady, barbecue sauce, local baked goods, freezers of meat and coolers of cheese. But that’s just the beginning.

Organic, non-GMO Tractor Beverage Co. sodas can be enjoyed straight from the fountain, and specialty drinks like Mexican Coke and craft beer are also available. It’s all part of Allen’s plan to help locals eat healthier at a reasonable price. “We try to shop local first, and what we can’t get local we get in organic, but we try to keep it a fair price,” he says. “So we keep it at the same price of a normal convenience store.”

Farm 2 Counter, 2006 N. Broadway Ave., Springfield, Missouri, 417.834.5197, farm2counter.com

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