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Back in 2008, aspiring North Canterbury business owners Miles and Tracy Ashley saw a gap in the pet supply market, and leapt straight in.
“We started The Feed Shack from scratch as we saw an opportunity in providing quality natural food and goods, very different to what was - and still is – a dynamic industry,” explains Miles. “We changed the key aspects of the ‘traditional’ pet store by not selling animals and selling more natural, quality food and supplies.”
And the locals responded. So much so that five years later, the Ashleys opened a second Feed Shack store in Christchurch.
“Our loyal customers have helped us to grow organically and have got us to where we are today,” explains Miles. Where they are today is a high profile position on Rangiora’s Good Street, having moved there in 2019 from a spot further out of the town centre.
“The Good Street development is exciting and we are glad to be surrounded by other vibrant shops. Being part of a group of other small business owner/operators and delivering quality goods and services to our community is the best thing about doing business in the Waimakariri District.”
Miles also hopes that their high-profile presence encourages consumers to support a small local business. “We hope that being more visible will encourage consumers to shop more locally and minimise their online shopping,” he explains. “Small stores pay taxes and rates and they employ local people and support local charities. Most of our bigger competitors send all their profits offshore so New Zealand taxpayers miss out. Many New Zealand consumers don’t realise the strategic impact of their decisions around purchases online or at big box retailers.”
Miles and Tracy say that from their new location their loyal customers are receiving the same high quality products and services they have enjoyed over the past decade, as well as some new developments.
“Our new space has allowed us to introduce more quality products and offer some new experiences such as doggy iced treats and an outdoor area, whilst also providing a better shopping vibe and all the benefits of CBD shopping.”
Despite operating in Christchurch, the Ashleys say they never thought of moving their business away from Rangiora and the loyal customers they have come to know over the past decade.
“We have over 10 years of loyal customers that have helped us grow and in the meantime we have brought up a family while running the store. We are well and truly invested in the community here.”
The Feed Shack is located at 4 Good Street, Rangiora and Bishopdale Mall, Christchurch. Visit www.thefeedshack.co.nz for more information.