14 Carrot Whole Foods

Carter Breland and Ed Elbrecht opened the West Columbia store in February 1991 and in 1996 doubled it's size. The Lexington store is twice the size of the original store and was opened May 2000.  Carter began the macrobiotic diet in 1983 after his doctors gave him no hope that he could beat his cancer.  He ate a strict macrobiotc diet and lived another 14 years. Ed Elbrecht has been eating natural foods since 1980 because it made sense to him.  He and Carter both felt this side of the river needed a complete natural foods store and started 14 Carrot Whole Foods.


Our Staff

I moved to SC in '80 and started an alfalfa sprout company named Solar Farms.  I met Carter Breland as a result of our mutual interest in the Macrobiotic diet and we opened 14 Carrot in '91.  We had a strong desire to help the community through natural, healthy foods.  Our store was small, but our dreams were big.  Carter passed away in '97 but his great sense of customer service lives on in our store.  Thanks for your support over the years, it's been great!

Ed Elbrecht

Store Founder

& Owner

Hi, I'm Janet.  I have always enjoyed working with plants and flowers.  Besides taking care of the plants at 14 Carrot I supervise the accounting functions of the store.  Ed and I have been married for over 20 years.  We started 14 Carrot together with Carter Breland in 1991.  We are blessed with two very bright college-aged sons.  They keep us on our toes!

Janet Elbrecht



Carter Breland first heard about the macrobiotic diet when friends approached him with information on how it could help him in his battle against cancer, which he'd been fighting for over 10 years. The diet so impacted his life that it became his mission to make it available for anyone, so he opened 14 Carrot with Ed in '91. The macrobiotic diet helped prolong his life more than 10 years past what doctors expected. Carter passed away in '97, but his memory lives on at 14 Carrot.

Carter Breland

Store Founder

Tami O'Brien



I became interested in the health food industry in the 80’s when my late husband, Carter Breland, went on the macrobiotic diet.  I've been associated with 14 Carrot since it opened in 1991 and after leaving work as a school teacher I worked in customer service at the store until my retirement in early 2017.

Nancy Jo

Customer Service


Hi, I'm Billie. I have been with 14 Carrot for over a decade. My main responsibility is maintaining the Point of Sale system, which includes keeping pricing and inventory updated. I also handle payroll. To relax, I enjoy spending time at the beach and listening to classical music. I want to thank all of our loyal customers at 14 Carrot. It has been a great experience to see our store thrive from our humble beginnings in West Columbia to what we are today.

Billie Dunn

Point of Sale


Hi, I'm Cat.  My main responsibilities are creating the monthly sales flyer, developing the store's website, maintaining the rewards program, creating event flyers, maintaining the store's Facebook page, and other marketing projects.  Please let me know if you need assistance with the rewards program or if you have any suggestions.

Cat Paquin



Hi, I'm Tristan, the 14 Carrot produce manager.  Come by and see our great selection of organic and local produce!  I'm here to answer your questions and take care of your produce needs.  Every Thursday and Sunday, from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. we offer an amazing discount of 30% off ALL PRODUCE!!  So stop by and say hello!

Tristan Moss

Produce Dept


Hello, I'm Kathy.  I came to the Carrot in 2003.  I have 2 daughters, 1 son, 11 grandchildren and never a dull moment.  Diagnosed with cancer 30 years ago, I began researching alternative healing. I went on the macrobiotic diet and started my own health food Co-op.  Whole foods, exercise, stress management, and religious faith made sense to me and I wanted to be part of helping others so this job was a good fit.  My team strives to keep the best Organic, Non-GMO, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Sugar-Free, Vegan or whatever your needs may be, available for you.  We support local, Biodynamic and sustainably farmed products. I look forward to seeing you soon and if you need anything just let us know!

Kathy Boone

Frozen Foods


After witnessing the health issues that my aging parents suffered, living a healthy lifestyle became a high priority of mine. This includes both eating a healthful diet and keeping physically active. I love to run! In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my husband, our three children, and our exotic short-haired cats, which I both breed and rescue. As a family, we enjoy taking vacations at the beach and going to see movies together. If you have any questions about finding the right health & beauty products for your needs, feel free to ask!


Erica Rollins

Health &



Hi! My name is Donna, and I'm the Supplements Assistant Manager. I love working for 14 Carrot because it's a small local company with a big purpose-- to promote and encourage healthy living. I believe wholeheartedly that what you put in your body as well as what you put on your body is a giant step toward well-being. The Carrot employs a great staff always ready to help you with a smile, so stop by and check out the many ways you can begin your journey to a healthy life.






Hi, I'm Jim. I started working at 14 Carrot in September of 2009 and I really enjoy it. I live in Leesville with my wife of nearly 40 years and my dog, Sparky. I have been an organic gardener for many years and I have seen the way a healthy diet can truly make a difference in a person's life. I'll always do my best to help you if you ever need my assistance in the store. 

Jim Heston

Grocery Assistant & Receiving

Hello! My name is Mardi. I have a passion for cooking that is parallelled by my enthusiasm for teaching people how to find the best local whole foods for their health. I love the whole 14 Carrot environment - people who care about helping you to become the healthiest, happiest person you can be. Feel free to stop by the deli and ask questions; that's why I'm here! Just like you, I am on my own wellness journey, so let's take a few steps together.

Mardi Mayo



Hi, my name is Robert. I work in 14 Carrot's Grocery Department, stocking everything from Almond Flour to Zevia Sodas. My wife and I have three sons and have lived in Lexington since 2001. I first became interested in whole foods when my oldest son was diagnosed with autism at age three. It's wonderful to be part of a team that is working hard to help people better their lives through natural products.


Robert Hawes

Grocery Assistant

Hi, my name is Song.  I have been working at 14 Carrot handling various jobs for over a decade.  In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my 2 sons and my granddaughter.  I enjoy staying active by taking walks regularly and the occasional dance class.  I look forward to seeing you around the store!




Hi!  My name is LaToya.  My job includes cashiering, bread ordering and some office work and data entry.  I enjoy spending time with my kids and granddaughters when I'm not at work.  14 Carrot is a great place to work. The best part of my job is interacting with the customers.  I look forward to seeing you soon!




Hello, my name is Shannen Alvarado! I like to learn about natural remedies in my free time and exercise as much as I can. I enjoy wildlife and listening to all kinds of music. I'm always eager to learn new things! If there is anything I can help you with during your visit to 14 Carrot, please let me know!