News and Tribune

December 29, 2012

Great Harvest closing doors

Owner makes difficult decision; hopes to sell business

By CHRIS MORRIS
chris.morris@newsandtribune.com

NEW ALBANY — Great Harvest Bread Co. in New Albany — 4214 Charlestown Road — will bake its last loaf of bread today, unless someone steps up to buy the business. The store will be open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Miriam Flowe, who has owned the business since February 2010, decided earlier this year to sell it or close the doors at the end of 2012. Today is her final day of operation.

Flowe said there were a number of reasons why she decided to make the difficult decision to close, which included lack of family time and not wanting to invest more money into her business.

“It’s partially because of business but we are at a place where in order to grow the business, we would have to invest a lot more time and capital, and I do not intend on going into debt in this atmosphere,” Flowe said. “I am not interested in taking that risk.”

Flowe said she “didn’t take this decision lightly.”

“It’s hard. I have some very loyal customers,” she said.

Great Harvest Bread in New Albany — which specializes in different breads and desserts along with soups and sandwiches — opened seven years ago. It’s located in a strip mall in front of Great Escape Theaters and Meijer. The franchise, Great Harvest Bread Co., began 35 years ago nationwide.

Flowe, who graduated from Indiana University Southeast with a degree in music business, was a production manager for a catering company before taking over Great Harvest with her mother almost two years ago, according to the store’s website.

“I expected long hours and hard work. I didn’t go into this blindly,” she said. “But what I didn’t expect were all the other things, like all the government agencies when you open a food business. But I know they are necessary.”

The store was open six days a week. Flowe said her day would start around 2 a.m. and end around 6 p.m.

“I am just not doing that anymore,” she said.

Flowe said no one has shown any interest in purchasing the business, although she hopes someone will step forward. Her lease doesn’t run out until the end of January, so if anyone is interested they should call 812-945-4422.

She also said if she has stock available following today’s close of business, she will contact loyal customers and bake special orders until she runs out of product.

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ON THE WEB

• Great Harvest Bread Co. — greatharvest.com