Exploring CulturesJan 01, 2019 ● By Frisco STYLE
Large and expanding American cities are highly-diverse in terms of demographic characteristics. The social diversities within such cities are economically productive, but could potentially inhibit the knowledge transfer due to barriers in communication. Well-rounded education and innovative opportunities are contributing significantly to diminish these barriers at a record pace today, thereby creating a uniform social lifestyle that is mutually-conducive to everyone living in these communities. The challenge for modern urban planning is to provide the best possible conditions for its people to flourish culturally and professionally. By taking diversity into consideration, this objective becomes more personal and could result in more fulfilling endeavors to Frisco’s population.
Successful cities require people, groups and cultures from different backgrounds to work together to cope with the constant changes of the social fabric in urban lives and to help develop a growth mindset. Frisco has seen some unprecedented growth in various cultural groups during recent times, especially compared to other cities in the metroplex and Texas. According to a 2017 American Community Survey, 21 percent of Frisco’s population is Asian and the Hispanic/Latino population is 14 percent. This growth can be contributed to Frisco’s unwavering focus towards improving economic health, balancing the cost of living and maintaining high standards of public education. Providing ample amenities and improving quality of life by creating urban diversity has been a key focus for the city. This has also translated into initiatives that promote diversity in local industries.
One such business that has made Frisco its home is Hareli Fresh Market, a new modern grocery store offering food and other products, mostly from India. Promoting a healthy lifestyle is front and center in the store’s vision, and it provides valuable and authentic products to customers at affordable prices. Organic farm-fresh vegetables are the core of the product line and a myriad of other products with South Asian influence grace the shelves. Clay and steel ware and spiritual-related products are also available. Unlike some of the other fresh market stores, Hareli has a frozen food section to provide more choice and convenience.
Like most Indian grocery stores, one can always expect decadent snacks that are freshly-made in the kitchen, right on the premises. Freshly-made roti, along with onion and potato fritters (pakora) are some of the most delicious items offered. While one can expect the usual fare with an Indian customer in mind, Hareli differs in a few respects. There is a wide selection of beer and wine, along with a meat section where custom cut meats (such as halal) are available.
Clearly, one huge characteristic Hareli has working in its favor is its location! The store is centrally located in West Frisco, surrounded by many residential areas.
La Suprema Market is another local market that caters to a different demographic and was formally launched with grand opening on December 1 on Main Street in downtown Frisco. La Suprema is an eclectic eatery with a mini grocery store and meat market. While providing a wide selection of freshly-cut meats, La Suprema also serves up tacos, caldo, platillo, burritos and other authentic Mexican dishes. La Suprema Market has a unique selection of Mexican spices and blends that are only found in specialty stores. While the fresh veggie section is not huge, the vegetables are locally-sourced, daily, to preserve freshness. Freshly-made salsa, guacamole, a variety of Mexican cheeses and custom meats are also available to customers.
It is definitely the eatery experience and spices that set La Suprema apart. La Suprema offers Mexican and Mediterranean foods with a barbecue twist. Freshly-made kafta, kabobs, shawarma and falafel are some of the Mediterranean foods customers can savor.
Another differentiator is the bakery section, which offers unique Mexican breads and decadent deserts such as pan dulce. La Suprema advocates the “shop local” initiative and sources its meats from local suppliers.
99 Ranch Market caters to consumers of all cultures and ethnicities with its high-quality products and food items with a strong Asian influence. The store has a huge Asian gourmet kitchen where customers gather during any hour to shop for meats and dishes including, but not limited to, Chinese barbecue. It boasts one of the largest bakery sections with an amazing selection of bread, cakes and pastries from all around the world. With a choice of beverages, international beer and wine are abundant, as well.
Even though fresh produce is on everyone’s mind, 99 Ranch Market takes it to a whole new level. Almost a third of the store is dedicated to fresh fruits and vegetables. They also have a wall-to-wall selection of both frozen and live seafood with options that are only limited to the consumer’s taste and appetite.
From porcelain dishes and custom china to unique cookers and appliances, there are aisles of items available. 99 Ranch Market also has a delightful restaurant where customers can enjoy authentic pho — a steaming noodle-based soup that will leave you craving more.
What sets 99 Ranch Market apart are some of the sub-sections within the massive store. At one of the nearby locations, there is a dedicated herb shop with teas and herbal treatments. A FedEx center, a Japanese Shiatsu massage center and a water purification business can even be found on site. This provides an immense opportunity for local businesses to partner with a market of this size, mutually benefiting customers and providing them with a one-stop location for various needs. Even though most of these have an Asian influence, one would find people from all cultures, backgrounds and ethnicities taking advantage of resources provided at these locations.
The diversity of Frisco is only expanding with the influx of new cultures and a unique pool of existing residents looking to invest and provide all the necessary resources to weave a fabric of unity. Each of these markets has a unique proposition, cultural heritage and diverse background rooted in values from overseas that people from all ethnicities can relate to and cherish. Cultural markets bear a significant value to the tradition they represent and their common motive is to provide residents of all backgrounds the opportunity to learn about other cultures.
Growth brings opportunity and that should give one the intrinsic motivation to experience the diversity that is all around. These unique markets serve as melting pots of cultural attributes, helping everyone savor the chance to overstep boundaries in culture and community.
Vikram Venneti is a business leader, technology evangelist, tree hugger and food connoisseur. He loves to run and hike and is a dad with a penchant for writing.