The Archie Brown Story
‘Raw,’ ‘cold pressed,’ ‘organic’ ‘unpasteurised,’ ‘vegan,’ ‘clean,’ ‘detox,’ and ‘unrefined,’ are only a few of the buzzwords/terms which pepper today’s media, and send us devoutly out shopping in order to behave and appear like our favourite celebrities. It is refreshing to see that good health and consumer ethics are in vogue. However, this also prompts the reflection that it was not always the case. It was not so in 1991, when Helen Swift’s dedication to delicious, healthy food found her a little, two-staffed vegetarian café in Bread Street. The café attracted a consistent flow of customers, and when John Richards offered the take over of his family’s neighbouring health food shop, Helen intuited that the two would go hand in hand.
Archie Brown’s was founded upon a particular ethos: leading a healthy lifestyle. Of course a lifestyle may not be considered healthy unless it is also sustainable. With these principles in mind at every turn, Archie Brown’s flourished into the vibrant hub of Penzance culture that it is today. In supporting and supplying that which is good for their bodies and minds, as well as for the environment, customers rely on the shop for their best-loved essentials – from laundry liquid to face creams – along with contemporary, more avant-garde alternatives. Stepping through the shop to the first floor, customers will find the café puts into practice the Archie Brown’s ethos by providing homemade breakfasts, lunches, snacks and a wide rage of freshly baked treats. There is also always an impressive selection of gluten free or vegan options. It is a happy coincidence (paired with the ingenuity and skill of the chefs) that the healthiest, most ethical foods can also be the tastiest: our juices are made with fresh fruit and vegetables, locally sourced whenever possible, and the milk and free range eggs – both sold in the shop and used in the café – are from local farms. We are very much under the impression that trading with local businesses can help combat global issues, environmental and trade related.
Comprised of a growing team passionate about fuelling the community with healthy produce, many of whom had received specialist training in naturopathy, homeopathy, nutrition and herbal medicine, Archie Brown’s was soon in a position to open a sister store. Located on Kenwyn Street, Truro, a second vibrant vegetarian café and health food shop can be found. Both shops – or ‘Aladdin’s Caves’, as recently described by a customer – provide an extensive array of products that support health and wellbeing. Wherever possible, we trade with small companies that support the independent retail sector, and only source from suppliers that share our concerns; who encourage conscious shopping. We are dedicated to recycling and urge our customers to return certain recyclable products so that they are disposed of in the best way possible. As well as this, we have consistently been providing refill options. We as team are committed to caring for our planet.
Helen is the heart of Archie Browns, and her vision for the community in Penzance and Truro, is to provide a healthy and sustainable lifestyle to each customer who walks through our doors.