Kerry Romig provided nutritional services in a small community in Alaska. There was only one problem. Her clients had little to no access to the kinds of nutritional foods that supported their healing and her work with them on lifestyle modifications. What to do? She built a store. Then she built a bigger store.
It started organically. Kerry was influenced by a rich history in living off the land in rural Alaska bridged with a strong influence of her family legacy in medicine in urban and rural Alaska. One of those influences was her recollection of her dad's protocols with patients, "Food first was his mantra", explained Kerry. "He always worked with his patients on their nutritional balances and this is where I was first taught the fundamental connection of food to health".
Kerry pursued her studies of oceanography and physics while in the Navy. One of her assignments in Scotland opened her eyes to the logistics side of purchasing, contracting and distribution of food which would serve her well in her next chapters of life. Kerry's real passion, however, was the science and practice of healing and it became the career she pursued at home in Seward as a practicing nutritionist. In 2006, Kerry opened Frontier Healing Arts and Sciences. "The challenge was that there was no easy access for the purchase of healthy foods and associated products for my community and clients," Kerry stated.. In 2009, she took it upon herself to open her first retail store outside of Seward. The Frontier Trading Post was small, but served its purpose of improving access to product and offering the community tools to educate themselves about nutrition and ways they could maintain a healthier life. In 2013, Kerry moved her store downtown and to a far larger space offering opportunities to expand the offerings to customers, One of the hallmarks of her downtown location are the prepared foods made in house or from family owned producers.
Providing access to an integrated and connected health food supply chain in communities is no easy task.. Kerry was up to the challenge as evidenced by her store, Frontier Trading Post, located in downtown Seward, Alaska.
Kerry continues her studies and practice through Frontier Healing Arts and Sciences with a growing expertise in the field of energetic healing while maintaining and growing the network of other specialists within the region to optimize the support and access for her community.
Her story demonstrates the number of roles required for seamless connections of a regional health and food supply chain. In this case, Kerry stepped up to fill the gaps and in turn, created a gathering place to showcase local foods, offer nourishment with whole foods for visitors and residents, promote and provide education and inspiration for her community.
The Frontier Trading Post features local Alaska products and this captured our attention with the linkages to Delta Alaska's Alaska Flour Company, featured in our October newsletter. The deli menu is always evolving and influenced by the community and annual visitors. "We have a sizeable European customer base favoring our brewer preparations of Kvass," Kerry reveals. "Kefirs and Kombuchas are standard offerings now as people recognize the health benefits that come from fermented foods."