Vim ‘n Vigor promotes Kaua‘i-made

For a little store, Vim ‘n Vigor in Lihu‘e sells a big selection of Kaua‘i-made products.

“It’s the sustainable thing to do,” says store manager Malissia Walker. “You want to support local people so they thrive.”

What looks like a health food store from the outside is actually a combination to-go restaurant, grocery store and department store, with back shelves holding high-end products such as national brand Avalon hair care products next to locally made products.

“It’s community oriented,” Sue Barretto, proprietor of Koloa-based Ayurveda Super Food and 528Hz products, says about Vim ‘n Vigor.

“It’s got a very welcoming environment,” Barretto to says.

Walker is a personal fan of Barretto’s 528Hz products such as the Zen Mind Body Spray and her Backyard Granola Snack. “I could just eat that all day,” Walker says of the granola snack.

The Zen Mind Body Spray is a mix of lavender, frankincense, sandalwood and myrrh.

Barretto’s teas, skin scrubs and smoothies also can be found on Vim ‘n Vigor shelves.

The 528Hz on the product labels is named after the sound tone that reportedly exists in the nine layers of consciousness. “It is the love vibration,” Barretto’s website at www.ayurvedasuperfood.com states.

Sharing shelf space with Barretto’s granola is another popular seller, island-made Anahola Granola (www.anaholagranola.com). Breads from Kaua‘i’s Midnight Bear Bakery and Island Sol Bakery tempt shoppers from baskets at the check-out counter.

 The store’s gluten-free baked goods sell fast, Walker says. What started as a specialty product for people who cannot tolerate gluten is now popular among buyers who can tolerate gluten, but choose not to.

“In the last year, it’s like everyone’s doing it. People say they feel sluggish if they have too much gluten. I know it’s made a difference in how I feel,” says Walker, whose store also sells gluten-free baking mixes.

On a front side wall are containers full of nuts, dried vegetables and dried fruit you can buy in bags or by the scoop-full.

“We sell a lot of raw, organic sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds,” Walker adds.

Locally made, individually wrapped cookies fill a smaller shelf.

National brands of naturally fizzy kombucha teas such as California-based Synergy teas from G.T.’s Kombucha share refrigerated shelf space with locally made Kaua‘i Kombucha bottled teas.

In the refrigerated section, you can find “live” (uncooked) drinks, desserts, salads and sandwiches delivered each day from Rainbow Living Foods in Kapa‘a (www.rainbowlivingfood.com).

Owner Janet Netto  says vegetarian burritos are big sellers, as are her desserts.

At her Rainbow Living Foods Restaurant in Kapa‘a, customer favorites are her shakes, rainbow tacos and rainbow burgers.

Her rainbow burger is a walnut and sunflower vegetable patty on flat walnut flax bread with basil pesto, marinara sauce, cashew cheese, avocado, tomato, arugula and sprouts.

Her tiramisu is made of almonds, dates, coconut oil, cashews, Irish moss, vanilla, raw cacao and hazelnut extract.

Back at Vim ‘n Vigor, in addition to refrigerated and frozen foods, locally grown fresh produce also is available every day.

Walker says the sheer variety of natural beauty and health care products and foods makes her store a one-stop shopping place for customers in search of presents.

“Combine an essential oil, a soap and a chocolate bar. This is a great place to get gifts,” she says.

Vim ‘n Vigor is located at 3-3122 Kuhio Highway.

For more information, call 245-9053.

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