Harvest Market now open in Carmel’s Merchants’ Square


Niemann Harvest Market isn’t a typical grocery store, according to Sean Olson, Carmel store director. In fact, he’d rather avoid that description altogether.

“We don’t like to use the word grocery store at all,” Olson said during a May 14 media preview tour. “It’s a food destination. It’s a shopping experience. That’s what we’re trying to create here. It’s about quality, and it’s about service. And one of the best ways to support that quality and service is through our partnerships with local producers and makers.”

Harvest Market opened its first location in Indiana May 15 at 2140 E. 116th St. in Carmel’s Merchants’ Square (the space was previously home to Marsh supermarket before becoming a temporary home for the Carmel Clay Public Library). The other two stores are in Champaign and Springfield, Ill.

All three locations feature locally sourced products and provide information about the farms that grew them or people that made them, but much of the offerings vary by store. Carmel, for example, sells locally produced fudge, candy and popcorn not available in Illinois.

During its opening weekend, Harvest Market will host more than two dozen of its vendors in store to meet shoppers and answer questions about their products.

In addition to selling food products for customers to prepare at home, Harvest Market offers several scratch options in its Farmhouse Restaurant and a variety of pre-made dishes. It also operates a bar that sells craft brews and features live music.

It also allows shoppers to customize fresh greens and toppings at a salad bar, make their own peanut butter and select items for individualized trail mix.

Fresh meat or seafood can be prepared to guests’ specifications as they shop for an instant meal.

“We’ll cook for you,” Olson said. “Then it’ll be hot and ready to take it home.”

Harvest Market churns its own butter, which guests can watch through a window near the back of the store. The butter is sold and used in the restaurant and in food products.

The store is open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

Niemann Foods, which was founded in 1917, is an associate-owned company that operates more than 130 stores throughout the Midwest.

Learn more at goharvestmarket.com.