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Moving Forward: Goose the Market adapts to survive & safely stay afloat

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Posted at 4:28 PM, Jan 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-28 16:28:30-05

INDIANAPOLIS — Keeping it simple and safely staying open with integrity is what Goose the Market does.

The cozy, comforting full-service butcher shop isn’t just a butcher shop. It’s a grocer. It’s a coffee/gelato shop. Pre-COVID, it served as a convenient and friendly lunch spot to stop for a creatively stacked sandwich or a warming bowl of soup.

It still serves all those purposes. But now, nearly 11 months into the pandemic, Goose has carved out even more ways to serve its employees and the community.

“Every day it seems like we wake up to a new challenge or situation that we have to address that, a lot of times, we’ve never addressed before,” said Goose the Market owner Mollie Eley.

Eley said one of the biggest challenges of running a tightly-spaced butcher shop during a pandemic is just that: Running it.

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In order to keep its employees safe from COVID-19, Goose the Market kept restrictions tight inside its shop at East 25th and North Delaware streets. In-person ordering and shopping had become an impossibility.

“We actually stayed closed to the public all the way through until about mid-October when we opened back up and started allowing customers back into the shop,” Eley said.

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Still, despite the challenges, the folks at Goose the Market were able to continue to connect Hoosiers with Indiana products and locally-farmed meats. The shop even found a niche in an unexpected place.

“We didn’t really have an online presence before this,” Eley said. “We used an online grocery system that would maybe get one or two orders a month prior to the pandemic. And now we have basically somebody on staff, who, that’s all they do: Fill online orders.”

Eley said she and her staff are grateful for a flexible and cooperative customer base, some of whom may return to in-person shopping and dining, others who may still rely on virtual shopping.

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“I think even after the pandemic (online ordering) will be a great resource for people who don’t love the in-person experience – who don’t enjoy shopping for groceries, or talking face-to-face with somebody, or don’t have the ability to go out of their house and do those types of things,” Eley said.

The shop has tried to maintain a connection through its blog, which boasts great tips and tasty recipes. Another way Goose has stayed connected with its fanbase is virtually, through Zoom. You can become an expert oyster-shucker or bone up on your butchering skills, all in a virtual format.

Even through all the tougher times, Goose the Market has still found a way to give back and support Hoosiers, especially those who may be struggling more right now.

They’ve done it through Donation Saturdays. Each Saturday, 10 percent of sales go to a different local organization that supports the community. Goose employees get to take turns choosing where the funds go.

“It’s been a really great way to connect with the community (and) learn more about organizations that are around that are helping Hoosiers during this time,” Eley said.

Find out more about Goose the Market, including online ordering, here.

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