2016 in Review: A Letter From Board Member Mark Estee

Hello members and soon to be members!  Well my number came up in the board meeting and it is my turn to have the honor of writing a short update on a few of the many facets that go on here at your COOP.  The team has been hard at work on a daily basis to best serve the community and the membership in every possible way while keeping a firm grasp on the Ends Statement.  I am not going to get into politics, so the end, but the Ends, as in what guides this amazing COOP we have here in Reno.

There is no better program that has developed from the COOP than the DROPP in my opinion.  It encompasses so many of the Ends.  Broad access to local and organic food.  Check.  Knowledgeable and empowered community to make choices.  Check.  Economically viable, creating social and economic network.  Check.  Stronger local food system that creates fair marketplace.  Check.  Environmental stewardship.  Check.  Distributors of Regional Organic Produce and Products.  Name says it all.

It is no secret that I am a “DROPP homer”.  This means I love the program and use all my businesses to support the mission.  We do this very easily.  We buy as much as we can.  The board of the COOP recognizes the importance of this program and we support the continued growth of this Food Hub.  Our own Nicole Sallaberry was selected for a national program and went back to Vermont (?) and took a high level class on the development of a Food Hub.  She came back with a ton of knowledge and practical skills to put in place right away for DROPP.  The investment was there on the COOP side and we have laid the groundwork for this to take off.  Some of the high lights are listed below.

  •  Leasing of a refrigerated truck to deliver, pick up and store items as we ready  for delivery.
  •  A new website
  •  Crop planning
  •  Increased sales
  •  Increased awareness
  •  Temporary location to organize orders
  •  Better buying power
  •  More local produce and products in the foods we make at COOP
  •  More money stays here in community

This list is impressive and continues to grow.  We are not perfect and have had some learning curves, but this is nothing new when you break with traditions and make things happen in the world.  If you are asking how you can help support this cornerstone of the COOP?  Easy to do.  When you go out to eat or dine, ask the servers where you are, where they get their food from.  If they don’t know maybe mention local food is easy now, available year round and you can tell them where to get it from!  Tell the owners, the chefs where to buy.  Ask for it.  Local eggs at your favorite breakfast spot?  Why not? If we all rise up and ask these questions, the ones who do not buy local will be left out.  Don’t think it can happen?  Why not?

Mark Estee, GBCFC Board Member 2.15.17

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Check out our 2016 Annual Report

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