Meet the people of the Stirling Health Food Store
The Stirling Health Food Store is staffed by three people. We're all knowledgeable and have great experience in health foods, supplements and home brew. We're here to help!
Josine Atsma Shop owner
Hi, I am Josine Atsma and I am the Shop owner (since April 2011) and have been the shop manager since 2010.
In April 2006 me and my husband JP moved to Scotland for a more peaceful and quiet life. Before settling down in the Stirling area we did voluntary work on organic farms all over Scotland. In the isolation of Achmelvich (near Lochinver) we learned that trying to be self-sufficient is what we want to pursue.
Working in a health food shop has been the next step to try and be environmentally friendly. And of course owning a health food shop is an even bigger part of the dream. Ever since I was a teenager I have been interested in alternative remedies. I remember countless nights me hanging over a bowl with nettle tea to try and cure my teenage acne. Or when I was a student taking valerian for sleepless nights.
I have been against animal testing for a long long time and have been a member of BUAV, SSPCA, Friends of the Earth and the RSPB in both the Netherlands and Scotland.
I have tried a vegetarian diet for some years, before deciding to eat mainly vegetarian with occasionally organic meat or game. My husband and I always cook from scratch and we have tried various "foreign" foods, like couscous, quinoa and kamut. Being self-sufficient means we grow our own vegetables at our home in Glendevon, make our own bread, jams, wines, beer, biscuits and pickles. Recently we've got 5 ex-battery chickens for a supply of fresh eggs.
I write a monthly newsletter for the shop in which I blog about my garden and chickens.
I have got a certificate in A. Vogel's herbal supplements, Nature's Aid training course and a HFI Health Food Institute Diploma. I've also got a Food Hygiene Certificate.
So, if you got any questions about homebrewing, cooking or alternative remedies just ask me or any other member of staff.
Stuart Ainslie Assistant Manager
Hi, I am Stuart Ainslie and I have been working for the Stirling Health Food Store since 2004.
My first introduction to 29 Dumbarton Road was way back in the early 80s when I was a teenager. I would go there to try and borrow money from my older sister (sometimes succesfully, more often not) who worked in the typing pool when the building was occupied by an Insurance Company.
Fast forward a couple of decades, and a friend of mine, stuck in traffic, happened to glance accross the road and notice a sign in the window of -what was by that tim- the Stirling Health Food Store, advertising the vacancy of part-time sales assistant. Long story short, he called me and told me about it, I turned up in a hastily prepared CV, badly ironed shirt and borrowed tie, had a very informal interview with the shop owner and not long afterwards was offered the job! That was back in 2004.
And here I am, almost 7 years and 3 children later. Sure the hairline is nothing but a fond memory and (as the notches on my belt can testify) the waistline keeps expanding at an alarming rate, but my commitment to excellent customer service is one thing that has remained the same.
I am extremely proud and fortunate to still be part of what must surely be one of Scotland's longer established (and highly respected) independent health food retailers. Not to mention one of Stirling's longest serving local businesses. But I just have, so there.
Gregor Robison Sales Assistant
Hi, I am Gregor. Health foods have played a big role in my life.
As a young boy I used to help my dad out at Stirling Health Food Store and when I left School I spent a few years working in the shop.
My main passion now is snowboarding. I am a Snowsports tutor at Polmont Hill Ski Centre. I am very happy to be part of the team and to be able to keep my knowledge of health food products up to date by working at Stirling Health Food Store.