East End Food Co-op Support Needed

The East End Food Co-op has been operating out of our small storefront at 1034 Commercial Drive since 1975. Initially launched as a buying club, we’re proud to offer healthy, local, organic, and fair trade products to over 11,000 members. We employ a unionized staff of ten employees and support hundreds of local producers, many from right in our neighbourhood.

Our co-op is in a crisis. Jimmy Pattison purchased Choices last year and their store across the street has doubled in size. This has seen our sales plummet up to 20%, and we are now under threat of closing our doors in the coming months if this does not change.

We have been responding very seriously to this crisis, with new investment from Vancity, a new marketing and member outreach campaign, and a new manager in place as of this week. Our staff have also stepped up in a big way, accepting a reduction in benefits in order to help keep our doors open.

But we can’t do it without the support of our community. We are asking our progressive neighbours in Vancouver to support in any of the following ways:

–  Join us at our AGM on Monday, June 25 (7pm-9pm at the WISE Hall) to learn more and connect over food & music

–  Shop at the Co-op and spread the word about the need for support with your community

–  Consider volunteering or making an investment in the co-op. (Message me for details)

The East End Food Co-op is Vancouver’s only community-owned grocery store. I’ve been volunteering on the board for the past eight years because I believe a co-op has a very important role to play in advancing food security and ensuring support for independent producers in Vancouver. We still have a promising future and plans to grow – but first we must survive this crisis.

Feel free to share this message more broadly in your networks. Let me know if you have any questions, and it would be great to see you at the meeting next week or in the store!

Graham Anderson
President, East End Food Co-op

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