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Thaiday’s tips to tackle the weekly shop

IF THERE is one piece of advice Rugby League star and token funny guy Sam Thaiday has for you when doing the weekly fruit and veg shop, it's to go in with a game plan.

With so much on offer, he said finding the best produce at the best price came down to knowing what was in season, taking advice from the experts and keeping an eye out for specials.

We caught up with the footy legend at his local fruit and veg shop to get the lowdown - check out the video above.

As for what you should be putting in the shopping basket this week, we also consulted the real experts (sorry, Sam) from Your Local Fruit Shop.

Footy star Sam Thaiday shares his game plan for tackling the weekly fruit and veg shop.
Footy star Sam Thaiday shares his game plan for tackling the weekly fruit and veg shop. Georja Ryan

Co-owner of Your Local Fruit Shop's Earth Market on the Gold Coast Voulla Pedersen said stone fruit should be at the top of your list.

"Melons are looking great, tomatoes, watermelons and Australian cherries. And even mangoes are almost at their peak now," she said.

With four stores under Voulla and her business partners' rein, we're pretty confident she's right.

Earth Market on the Gold Coast began as a small business seven years ago.

Fast forward, and the family-owned operation quickly grew into a four-store empire across South East Queensland.

Wanting a career change Voulla Pedersen and her husband Kelly joined forces with her sister and brother-in-law in 2010.

Previously working in the hair industry, Voulla and Kelly were not expecting to enter into the fruit and vegetable industry, but after a dinner conversation with her sister their fate was sealed.

"I didn't expect to go into business with my sister because I had a different career background. The opportunity came up and we put our heads together and bounced off each other so well, then we thought, we could do great things!" Voulla said.

With over 27 years in the fruit and vegetable industry Voulla's sister Tsambica and husband George were the perfect pair to partner with.

Now with four stores, three on the Gold Coast and one in in Logan, Voulla and Tsambica couldn't imagine their life any other way.

Regularly doing cooking demonstrations at Robina Town Centre, The Kitchens, Voulla and her sister are dedicated to promoting healthy eating.

"A lot of people are time poor and don't have knowledge of cooking with fruit and vegetable produce," Voulla said.

"That's where we come in and show customers how to prepare and cook certain veggies or fruit items and inform them on the nutritional benefits."

Voulla said working in business with family isn't always easy but when you play to each other's strengths and respect one another's opinion there were no hard feelings.

"Sometimes it's a matter of supporting each other to understand where we're coming from," she said.

"We all look out for each other and that we each have each other's interests, the business interests and the staff interests at heart."

Describing their network of staff as one big family Voulla noted the staff had been with them since the inception of Earth Market.

"We love our staff. We are like one big family and we love that. Our staff know the ins and outs of all our produce and understand the goal we are trying to achieve. Having such wonderful staff with us for a long period of time is uncommon and we count ourselves very lucky," Voulla said.

With the business close to their hearts, the couples have had to learn their own way for balancing work and personal life.

"At family events we have to consciously stop talking about the shop but half the time we don't mind because it's our life," Voulla said.

Even Voulla's five-year-old daughter is up with the family business. She knows all things Earth Market and wears her branded t-shirt with pride.

To find a Your Local Fruit Shop near you, head HERE.  

Topics:  sam thaiday

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