Independent supermarket to take on the big boys in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter

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A chef and entrepreneur who spent many years running a restaurant in France is launching a new independent supermarket in Birmingham later this year.

Roots Market is the brainchild of Andrew Goldsby and will be housed in a 1,800 sq ft former furniture store in the city’s historic Jewellery Quarter.

He is hoping it will attract the locals, known to be great supporters of the district’s thriving independent cafés, bars and shops, and offer a sustainable and organic alternative to the two Tesco Express supermarkets it will sit equidistant between on Warstone Lane.

Roots Markets will have three distinct offers – a supermarket selling locally sourced, seasonal and organic food, ready-prepared meals and cook-at-home recipe boxes made on site in a dedicated kitchen and a range of natural vitamins, supplements and grooming products.

Customers will be able to buy grains, pulses, seeds and other store cupboard items from around 70 dispensers akin to a pick ‘n’ mix stand, dramatically cutting plastic waste.

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The new venture is due to launch in mid-November and has created 15 jobs.

Mr Goldsby said he was inspired to launch Roots Markets by the areas where he used to shop locally for fresh ingredients and produce while running his restaurant in France.

“When I came back to England there were just chain supermarkets everywhere so I thought to myself that I would like to do something different here,” he told BusinessLive.

“Looking at the site in the Jewellery Quarter, it is just in a prime location in the middle of two Tescos and it made sense to launch this there.

“I am still surprised that no-one has actually done this already and I think there’s a huge gap in the market for this type of supermarket as everyone I talk to seems to feel very negatively towards the chains.

“We are fully confident that it’s going to work, especially where we are.”

Dispensers will enable customers to buy as much or as little as they wish and no single-use plastics
Dispensers will enable customers to buy as much or as little as they wish and no single-use plastics

Mr Goldsby, 42, studied at the Birmingham College of Food and trained as a chef, including under Raymond Blanc in Oxford, before moving to Provence in southern France where he ran his own restaurant called La Petite Cave.

The 15-seat venue was housed in a 12th century cave which he bought and renovated and featured in the Michelin Guide.

He returned to his home city in 2017 after 15 years in France and was recently renovating properties before deciding to launch the supermarket.

Birmingham is a city well known for its support of independent retailers, bars and restaurants and has seen success in the supermarket sector with The Clean Kilo, which runs a zero-waste model from sites in Digbeth and Bournville.

Mr Goldsby told BusinessLive he was planning to open multiple venues including more in Birmingham and had already considered sites on the Calthorpe Estate in Edgbaston.

He added: “We definitely want to do more than one supermarket, just to give the public some choice.

“The long-term aim is to take the company nationwide.

“We’re not overly ambitious but we do want to do more over the next five to ten years

“There is room for a couple more in Birmingham at least and then aiming at places like Oxford, Stratford, Worcester and Leamington Spa, those kind of towns.”


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