I dream of a thriving local economy, one where people produced goods and services in their community and large corporations are at bay. Austin is by no means at this utopian state and probably never will be, but there are quite a few small local companies that are serving this area with quality goods and services. I try my hardest to support them as I can.
One of my favorites is Good Flow Juice and Honey, a small operation on East Austin that sells fresh fruit juice and honey wholesale to local retailers. They've been in business since the late 70s and they've never pasturized their juice.
They had no problems, and most of Austin just loved them. They had warning labels on all the juice bottles, and consumers were left to make the choice to risk illness in favor of fresher juice. I tried Good Flow pretty soon after arriving in Austin, and loved it for it's fresh-squeezed taste.
This was all good and well until the FDA got involved, and Good Flow has since been shut down (temporarily, we hope). The Austin Chronicle has a full explanation in this article. FDA regulations for pasturization are necessary for food that travels significant distances, and carting some orange juice around central Texas is not the same as sending something down the interstate towards Oklahoma or New Mexico (or further, like say, Odwalla).
It's just a shame. Good Flow is the type of company that keeps Austin true to itself, and I'll be looking to sign the petition mentioned in the Chronicle article to keep it around.