There has been an outpouring of well-wishes from the community for the retiring owners of Oropi fruit and vegetable store John's Produce.

Yesterday the Bay of Plenty Times ran a story about Lorraine and John Storie's last day in the store after 32 years in business.

The store was closing to allow them to begin a well-earned retirement.

The article attracted more than 100 comments on the paper's Facebook page as former customers and employees sent the Stories their best wishes and shared their memories of the store one person called the "best fruit and vegie shop in Tauranga".


The Stories were lauded for their long service, friendly faces, prices, selection of hard-to-find fruits and even, according to Rebecca Balmer, for being the "best bosses ever"

The Stories did not answer their phone when the paper called on Tuesday (hopefully already on holiday), but John Storie said on Monday he was already feeling humbled by the well-wishes.

Here are a few of the comments:

Prue Upjohn: Going to be very strange not to have them there. Always a friendly smile, lots of laughs. Thank you, enjoy your retirement x

Kim Laramie: Sad to see John's Produce go, the only place in Tauranga which sold old-school Ballarat and Cox's Orange apples.

Gaylene Donaldson: Sad to see John's Produce closing, you guys have worked so hard all these years, but always so helpful and always greeted with a smile.

Sue Peterson: All the best John and Lorraine, will miss you heaps. Thanks for your fantastic friendly service. Enjoy your well-deserved retirement!

Robyn Turner Used to love going there for the most affordable passionfruit in town.

Racheal Harrison Nooooo! Where am I gonna buy my Blackboy peaches from now! My daughter called it "The Smiley Face Shop" after the smiley face lollies.

Cilla Pond So will miss John's. All the best for happy retirement days and thank you - loved my weekly shop. It's like having the country in town.

Jan Burns Wishing you both all the very best! Well deserved retirement to the loveliest couple.

Cynthia Ngawaka Aaaww, really? I just thought you would always be there. Handy on my way home. Lovely people, such good value.