Vernon, NJ—Healthy Thymes, a small natural products store is not just another business that felt the effects of Hurricane Sandy. In the last month, the store was exposed not only to a hurricane, but also an earthquake and a snowstorm. Miraculously, physical damage was minimal at Healthy Thymes. While wind was the main culprit of damage in this area of the state, owner Dan Segal says that his store lost power for four and a half days. In that time period, Segal was forced to discard all of the products that he keeps in his 22-door refrigerator and frozen department.

Donations collected for hurricane victims (from Facebook).

He says he felt “the pain of throwing things away,” because by the time they opened the store they could not even consume or donate any of the spoiled items. In addition, Segal says they are still facing large monetary losses. In addition to the days the store was closed, income has been minimal, due to shoppers facing power outages and some leaving their homes. Even Thanksgiving seemed to sneak up on everyone this year.

Even throughout these losses, Segal keeps a very positive attitude. He realizes that, “as bad as it is for us, we will get through this,” and this storm has been more of a mere inconvenience for him, acknowledging the fact that so many other areas suffered more greatly. During these hard times Segal partnered with his daughter to collect donations for the people affected by Sandy down south.  His storefront was filled with bags of clothing, sheets, towels and strollers, and they delivered numerous carloads to Ortley Beach, just north of Seaside Heights.

Segal is hoping that business will pick up again soon, and he has one message for all his consumers, “We’re here. Come shop.” WF


Back to Main Story: Profiles in Perseverance

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, January 2013 (online 11/26/12)