A Maryville College graduate and his wife recently turned a weekly chore into a business that can help area charities raise money.
Maryville College alumnus Trey Brewer, 23, and wife Brett, 22, recently created a grocery delivery service, “In the Bag Delivers,” to fulfill their passion to help their community and local nonprofit organizations.
“I grew up in Maryville and benefited from the overwhelming support of parents, teachers, coaches and the general community. Now that I have graduated from Maryville College, I want to do my part to make the community a better place for the future,” Trey Brewer said.
Trey Brewer graduated from Maryville College in May with a bachelor’s degree in international business. He currently works for Blount County government. Brett, who is majoring in art and writing/communication, plans to graduate this May.
The Brewer’s charity venture serves the Maryville and Alcoa community in two ways. The couple shops for and delivers groceries to families who struggle to find time to visit the grocery store. Their largest clientele are families with both adults working full-time. Also, clients of “In the Bag Delivers” can donate $5 to a charity of their choice.
Trey Brewer said that when they were planning their business, they expected retirees would be their initial demographic of people who want their services.
“We found that families who are busy really, really liked the service, particularly parents who work and have kids,” he said.
Trey Brewer said that in doing research, he learned a person will spend an average of about 100 days of their life in the grocery store. “It’s a long time to be in a grocery store, and 10 of those days people were trying to figure out how to save a half cent on an ounce of shredded cheese,” he said. “That’s a long time to spend in a grocery store, but we do all that in the store for people so they won’t have to worry about it.”
Trey Brewer said a lot of their clients have told him and his wife that they’ve waited for years for something like this to be available in the area. “We are trying to fill a niche,” he said.
For their service, the couple charges $4 if the client does not want to include a charitable donation. For those who wish to support a charity, they donate $5 of the $7 service fee to the local charity of the customer’s choice.
Clients can register and place their orders on the business’ website at inthebagdelivers.com. Shopping at Kroger on Watkins Road in Maryville, the Brewers deliver groceries Monday through Saturday, between 7 and 9 p.m.
The couple created their business in December and started delivering in January. They have already gained several regular clients who appreciate what the service has to offer.
“‘In the Bag Delivers’ has proven to be a wonderful timesaver for my family. We also love how community-oriented this service is and appreciate the chance to designate support to the things we are passionate about,” said Clay Bagby, director of Young Life in Maryville. “As a family of six, we always need something, so going online and putting in a quick order saves a huge chunk of my day.”
The Brewers created a system that allows them to shop as efficiently as possible. “We are learning a lot. I can do my own shopping in 10 minutes now,” Brett said.
The young couple first met in the fall of 2006 when Brett moved to campus from Richmond, Texas. They took several classes together and dated over the next three years. They married on July 4, 2009 in Walland.
The couple said their interest in community service grew from their individual experiences at Maryville College. Trey Brewer worked with nonprofit organizations around Maryville and Alcoa through his participation in the Bonner Scholars Program. As a Bonner Scholar, he volunteered at least 40 hours a month in exchange for substantial scholarship dollars to apply toward tuition and books.
While serving as a senior fellow on the Mountain Challenge staff at MC, Brett Brewer was exposed to local organizations whenever Mountain Challenge hosted or participated in various programs and events.
“‘In the Bag Delivers’ is an easy way to combine things we are interested in with what we are passionate about,” she said.