There's a new wave of food co-ops developing in Chicagoland and the Sugar Beet Co-op is at the forefront of this growing movement along with several other start- up food co-ops.
1. The Dill Pickle Co-op in Logan Square has been open since 2009 and they are working towards an expansion to be ready for customers in 2015.
2. The Sugar Beet Co-op in Oak Park, IL started organizing in January 2012 and expects to open a 6300 square foot store at 812 W. Madison in early 2015.
3. Chicago Market started developing in February 2013 and is gaining momentum through an aggressive membership campaign. The projected location for the co-op is in the North Central neighborhoods of Chicago.
4. Rogers Park Food Co-op is establishing its roots in the city's North side. They are raising membership now.
5. Prairie Food Co-op in Lombard, IL started organizing in mid 2012 and has a strong membership campaign.
Chicago Market will be a big, bright, beautiful community-owned grocery store featuring local, sustainably farmed, organic produce, meat and dairy products, as well as all of the other staples you'd expect from your market -- dry goods, bulk foods, frozen foods, wine, beer and liquor. We'll have a butcher shop, delicious prepared foods and fresh-baked goods. Chicago Market will be a community hub where shoppers can enjoy the juice and coffee bar while attending workshops, classes, meetings and performances. "
"Chicago Market will provide farm-to-table transparency about food, its origins and its processes. It will educate its community about nutrition, ingredient sourcing and methods of food production. The Market will support sustainability and integrity in all areas, including environmental stewardship, fair labor practices and cooperative principles. It will be devoted to the triple bottom line: People, Planet and Profit.
The Dill Pickle Co-op
The Dill Pickle Co-op opened in 2009 after Logan Square residents and surrounding communities had a craving for fresh, healthy sustainable groceries. The co-op is approximately 1,300 square feet and has over 1,300 owners. With such a huge success, The Dill Pickle Co-op is currently in the process of expanding this summer. The co-op has already received a loan from North Country Cooperative Development Fund. Through this loan, the Dill Pickle is creating a path for future co-ops to emerge. The North Country Cooperative Development Funds requires membership dues, which are then used to help other co-ops.
Prairie Food Co-op
Prairie Food Co-op is in the beginning stages of serving the Lombard and surrounding communities. The Prairie Food Co-op took vision when Jerry and Kathy Nash moved to the Lombard area and realized that it was classified as a Limited Supermarket Access area. While the Prairie Food Co-op has yet to open, it was featured in the Chicago Tribune article, "Food Co-ops Growing Around Chicago."
Rogers Park Food Co-op
Rogers Park Food Co-op is still in the process of being established in the Northside of Rogers Park area. The members have been meeting twice a month since December 2012 and are hoping to open the co-op in the near future.