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Great Harvest: "We Love South Pasadena"

Days after the South Pasadena location of Great Harvest Baking Company closed, the national company says they will try to work with the owners of the local franchise or work to recruit a new owner.

Days after the closure of the Great Harvest Bread Company's South Pasadena location, company representatives said they believe South Pasadena is a good market for the store's brand and hope to see another location open there again at some point.

The South Pasadena bakery location , left with a home-made sign thanking South Pasadena residents for their support and no further explanation for why it had been shut down.

Great Harvest marketing director Kate Ord did not have all the answers either when she spoke with Patch; while Great Harvest has a national brand, the individual stores are run by local franchise owners, Ord said.  

There was no centralized decision to close the South Pasadena location and Ord said she did not have any definitive details on why the owners closed the location.

She added that the company will be in touch with the local owners to see if there is anything that can be done.  If not, the company will consider recruiting others potential business owners who might want to run a franchise in town.

"We feel like South Pasadena is a place that appreciates the products we create," Ord said.

Multiple calls to the owners of the South Pasadena franchise were not returned on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Great Harvest was started in the 1970s in Great Falls, Montana and now has more than 200 locations in the U.S. according to the company's website.

Carrie Adrian August 30, 2012 at 03:59 AM
It should never have closed. Why didn't franchise support Patricia and Chris earlier so this wouldn't have happened.
Mindy B August 30, 2012 at 01:57 PM
It had been for sale for some time. I thought the chain was gimmicky and their "hometown feel" was all too contrived. Lets hope the owners start a unique business of their own. That's what SOPA is known for, we don't need another "corner bakery".
Elias Baldwin August 30, 2012 at 03:56 PM
Nice owners, but yes, contrived and chain-like. Also felt overpriced and very limited in selection. Tough when you have the mighty Busters across the street and a discount bread outlet with pretty good options down the block. Maybe in a more up economy this wouldn't have happened. I wish these people luck in their next endeavor.
Chris August 31, 2012 at 03:42 AM
Some incredibly uninformed and thoughtless comments. We do need this bakery, and the coffee and home-style bread. I'm sorry, what was contrived in that rustic, awkward interior? Chain-like? Let's all mimic each other and say I told you so. I never knew the owners nor cared to and maybe stopped there twice a month., but when the vibe at Buster's and Kaldi gets too thick with the "I'm a regular if you can't hear me I'll talk even louder" types, or you can't hear yourself think at Heirloom, that "corner bakery" provided needed shelter. I would love to see the photographic evidence from the other 200 hundred stores that make this one chain-like and gimmicky. Perhaps people who get up early to blog their fuzzy opinions need to get out and smell and support their local coffee shops. Better yet, in this post-editor age when everyone has a keyboard, we might alter the old adage to think before you blog.
klmb August 31, 2012 at 05:20 AM
Our kid worked there since it opened and he didn't tell us it was closing so I don't think there was a lot of warning to employees but the writing gas been on the wall almost since it opened, SoPas is a hard place to start a successful business if you don't already have a lot of money in the bank or own the building.
Elliot Kwock September 01, 2012 at 10:21 PM
I am not surprised that it failed. $8.00 a loaf is way out of my middle class budget. They should have made some regular breads for normal budgets.
Lori Paul September 02, 2012 at 07:01 PM
My husband & I discovered Great Harvest bakery up in Logan, UT, where we attend a Small Satellite Conference each year. That bakery is far from gimmicky & the bread does NOT cost $8 a loaf! The place is casual, smells of fresh bread & coffee, and is far from "gimmicky." It's been there for years & seems operated by local University students. In fact, its decor is rustic concrete floor and old wood tables. Sandwiches from there are economical & delicious. Big slabs of fresh bread are handed out as samples. We encountered another Great Harvest in Montrose, CO, during our travels. It had an entirely different feel, but was equally economical & fine bread. (It's the fresh-milled flour that makes the difference.) That bakery was more brightly lit, with modern "farm decor" and a wood floor...appeared to be run by a cheery family. Apparently, franchise owners have a lot of freedom. I was thrilled to discover there was a Great Harvest in S. Pas when I got home (we live in Altadena), I drove down, only to find it had closed that day! It seems like the owners may not have been a good fit for the Co. or the site & were charging too much for their bread. Sad, because we found Great Harves fresh bread quite delicious (not icky sweet). Great Harvest bakeries ain't Corner Bakery chain shops. We hope someone will take over & bring a Great Harvest back to our region. One like in Logan, UT. If not S. Pas, how about Altadena? We'd be pleased to have one, if S. Pas locations are too pricey.
Spiff September 25, 2012 at 07:49 PM
Thank you Lori...I had not been in a month and was shocked when I went this morning and saw that they had closed. We discovered Great Harvest because my inlaws have some near their house in Northern California. It is NOT a chain in the sense of a Corner Bakery at all! And it is not contrived or $8 a loaf...try $4-$5. It was the best bread I've ever had. Chris and Patricia will be missed!

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