September 27, 2010. Retrieved online September 28, 2010 from Brook Stockberger, Las Cruces Sun-News
LAS CRUCES – Seattle has coffee shops, Philadelphia has cheesesteak stands and Memphis has barbecue joints. Las Cruces, of course, has Mexican restaurants, but a new craze has also moved into southern New Mexico’s largest city.
You might already know their names: D&G Nutrition, The Spot Nutrition, A Blend of Nutrition and Herbalicious, to name a few. They are shops that offer Herbalife nutrition shakes, tea blends and other drinks in which you join a club to access the company’s products. They have exploded in popularity.
“I’d say there are over 20 now,” said Graeme Edwards, who, along with his wife, Dani, operates D&G at 201 S. Solano Drive, and other locations.
“There’s a lot of positive energy,” said Enrique Carrillo, who owns The Spot Nutrition at 207 Avenida de Mesilla. He said he was recently recognized as the top distributor in the country for Herbalife, and is sponsoring a new store that will open this week. “We can see over 250 people come in here on Fridays.”
Have these shake shops reached their saturation point or is there still room to grow? Is this a fad that will fall out of favor in a few years, leaving many owners holding the bag, or will it remain strong?
Already, some shops have closed. Wild West Nutrition in the Mercado off of Avenida de Mesilla closed its doors earlier this year and there used to be Club One Nutrition in the Del Rey Plaza.
Vickie Montez with the city of Las Cruces’ Community Development Department, which oversees business licenses, said she does not know how many of the nutrition shops have opened and closed, but, “There have been quite a few (apply for a license). And we’ve seen some that have closed.”
Economist Tony Popp has spent years studying the Las Cruces area. He said he would not be surprised if the nutrition locations are here to stay.
“Eventually you’ll get saturated, but as people fall in and out of the market, this could be maintained for a while,” said Popp, a professor emeritus at New Mexico State University. “These products have been around for a long time.”
Carrillo said that, as owners bring more people into the businesses, by sponsoring them, they get points that translate into payments from the company.
So, owners can look for others they can bring into the fold to branch out farther.
Read the Las Cruces Sun-News article.