Family-owned grocery store in Gurnee adds halal meat counter
When David and Faye Oshana opened Nohadra Food, a bulk-item import grocery store in Gurnee, in February 2022, they weren't sure who their regular customers would be.
"Because all Americans eat this stuff now like hummus and baba ghanoush," Faye Oshana said.
As it happens, many of their customers are Muslim Americans whose families are from Iran, Morocco and other Middle Eastern/Asian countries, Faye Oshana said.
And those customers kept requesting the store sell halal (permissible) meat, which comes from suppliers who raise and slaughter animals in keeping with Islamic dietary laws.
The Oshanas were happy to oblige, and earlier this month the store's halal meat counter opened to great success. Faye Oshana said it was good they didn't open the meat market initially because it took several months for business to pick up in 2022.
"We probably would have lost meat," Faye Oshana said. "But we've been doing good so far."
For the couple, food and groceries are a family tradition.
David Oshana's late father and mother, Namrod and Maria Oshana, ran restaurants in Chicago for 30 years, and the family opened its first grocery store with the Nohadra name on Devon Avenue 12 years ago.
"Nohadra is an outdoor market in the village of Duhok in upper Iraq," Faye Oshana said.
She said when Namrod and Maria's heath began failing a few years ago, they sold their Chicago businesses and began planning to open a store in Gurnee, closer to their home in Lindenhurst.
Namrod and Maria Oshana died within weeks of the Gurnee store's opening at 5101 Washington St.
Faye Oshana said their legacy lives on in the new store, including the name, which was picked out by Namrod.
"We kept the name because we wanted to keep the memory of him," Faye Oshana said.