Alexia Gonzalez owns The Earth Pantry. Charmain Z. Brackett/Augusta Good News
Alexia Gonzalez owns The Earth Pantry. Charmain Z. Brackett/Augusta Good News

Eco-friendly grocer is community minded

An eco-friendly, zero-waste grocery store in the heart of downtown Augusta wasn’t what Alexia Gonzalez envisioned for her life.

“My passion was to save the ocean,” said Gonzalez, who opened The Earth Pantry at 1026 Broad St. on Nov. 4, 2023.

She tried different majors such as  veterinary science and marine biology, looking to find ways to steward the planet and its resources, but her journey followed a different path.

Products at The Earth Pantry are sold by the ounce. Charmain Z. Brackett/Augusta Good News

Gonzalez started blogging about sustainable lifestyle and travel and felt that educating people about sustainable living was something she could do to better care for the environment.

 She also searched for eco-friendly ways to combat her dry skin and started making her own products.

During the pandemic, she and her fiancé relocated to a farm in Hephzibah.

“That’s his baby,” she said.

There, he raises chickens and turkeys and cultivates crops such as watermelon, blueberries, cucumber, squash and wildflowers.

She started taking the products she made and selling them at pop-up events.

“I really wanted to have a bus to bring these things to people who needed them or to travel to take them wherever,” she said.

But on a visit to Broad Street, a storefront grabbed her attention. It was the former alterations business SewCo.

“I thought ‘Lord, what are you doing? I don’t want a store,’” said Gonzalez.

She prayed that if this wasn’t the right path that the doors would close, but she couldn’t get away from the feeling that she should call the landlord. Once she did, she said things started falling into place. And a few months later, she took a leap to open the store.

At The Earth Pantry, products are sold by the ounce. People refill and reuse their containers rather than tossing them in the trash and buying new ones.

“I wanted to shop like this when I was in college, and I couldn’t afford it so my goal is to make it accessible and affordable for everyone because healthy and organic foods shouldn’t be only for the wealthy but should be for everyone who needs it,” she said.

The Earth Pantry is located at 1026 Broad St. Charmain Z. Brackett/Augusta Good News

Gonzalez offers a variety of products from the toothpaste she makes, which she said is a customer favorite and the top Google review getter, to eggs and much more.

“We have coffee, tea, seasoning, snacks, baking items, local eggs, local raw milk, local butter, local bread every week,” she said to name a few of the items on her shelves.

In addition, she offers household goods such as toilet paper and earth friendly cleaning products.

She also likes to partner with other businesses.

She has coffee from Buona Caffe and handcrafted knives made by her fiance’s father. Oy Vey Schmear Bagels and More, which specializes in New York-style bagels, and Augusta Pop Co. are among the pop-up vendors she’s worked with. Augusta Pop Co. will have a permanent freezer with inventory soon, she said.

Read more: Evans’ teachers’ business pops

Gonzalez said she’s willing to work with other vendors who grow or make things and want to sell them. She has a few events coming up.

From 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 16, there will be a seed swap at the store just in time for spring planting, and at 2 p.m., there’s a seed bomb workshop. It has a cost of $15.

And she’s making plans for a clean up on Earth Day in April.

Charmain Z. Brackett, the publisher of Augusta Good News and Inspiring: Women of Augusta, has covered Augusta’s news for 35 years. Reach her at Sign up for the newsletter here.

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One response to “Eco-friendly grocer is community minded”

  1. Beth Chesnut Fillingim says:

    Congrats, Alexia! The shop is awesome! We love the safe, nontoxic choices! Awesome to have a place like this in the area.