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Cher Piche, Down to Earth Foods
Cher Piche, Down to Earth Foods

Open For Business: Down to Earth Foods

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Down to Earth Foods
Cher and Tony Piche opened Down to Earth Foods on March 26 at 1952 E. Grand St. Cher Piche said the 2,900-square-foot facility is modeled after Amish bulk food stores and features an assortment of natural foods. The Piches, who were both born in Africa, had been traveling to Amish-style groceries for several years and saw an opportunity to expand the natural foods market in Springfield. Down to Earth Foods buys products in bulk from Amish communities in Ohio and Pennsylvania, as well as natural beef, pork, vegetables and eggs from local farmers. The couple self-financed the business at $65,000 and lease the space from Roberts & Associates for $990 per month, Cher Piche said. Cher and Tony Piche previously owned Total Pipeline Industries, which sells farming equipment, in Africa. Tony Piche currently works as general manager at Loveall Custom Sheet Metal. Hours: 9:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9:30 a.m.–3 p.m. Saturday. Phone: (417) 501-1054.

Shirley Franklin Realtors
Shirley Franklin started Shirley Franklin Realtors out of her personal office Dec. 30 and opened in commercial space April 4 at 777 E. Battlefield Road, Ste. 102-C. Franklin described the seven-employee real estate company as a small, boutique-style agency. The agency has a standard 6 percent brokerage rate. Franklin said startup costs were $50,000, and she leases the 1,200-square-foot office from Tykor Properties for an undisclosed amount. Franklin previously worked in sales and accounting at Quality Trim and Sign, which she started with her husband, Brett Franklin, in 1981. Shirley Franklin said the agency offers a buyer’s tool that allows property seekers to obtain information about houses by texting info4u to 59559. Hours: 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Monday through Friday and by appointment. Phone: (417) 818-1237.

Float Trip Pickles LLC
Attorneys Jerry Harmison Jr. and Greg Pearman, and Harmison’s daughter, Jessica, started Float Trip Pickles LLC on April 15. The business is based at Harmison and Pearman PC, 4730 S. National Ave., Ste. A-1, the firm Pearman and Harmison launched in 2003. They started out making the sweet and spicy pickle and jalapeno mix more than 18 years ago to take on float trips. After giving out free samples at the 2010 Rock ’n Ribs festival, the trio formed Float Trip Pickles, and Pearman estimated the partners have spent more than $5,000 in the startup so far. The company leases space by the hour at Your Commercial Kitchen Inc., 3433 S. Campbell Ave, Ste. C, in Savannah Square, where the pickles are made and packaged. Harmison said Float Trip Pickles are sold at Homegrown Foods, Harter House, Brown Derby International Wine Center and online at Hours: 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Phone: (417) 823-3074.

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