Concentration of CO2 in the Atmosphere

Monadnock Food Co-op, Keene, New Hampshire

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Interview with Meghan Lafaso Hercher, Events and Outreach Coordinator

G.E.T. Staff

G.E.T.: When did your co-op start. How many members are there?

Meghan Lafaso Hercher: In April 3, 2013. We have over 4,400 members.

How has your business grown through the years?

MLH: In the early days, the founders of the Monadnock Food Co-op identified a pressing community need: a place where residents could shop for healthy, locally sourced food seven days a week. Before the co-op’s establishment, community members had to make multiple trips to farms, farm stands, and farmers’ markets to access the wide range of products now available under one roof. Between 2006 and 2009, a dedicated group of volunteers came together to advance the community’s vision for a cooperative. In the years spanning 2010 to 2012, the Monadnock Food Co-op officially incorporated in April 2010. The Board entered into a partnership with the National Cooperative Grocer Association (NCGA) Development Co-op to oversee the co-op’s store design, layout, fundraising efforts, and provide guidance during its initial three years of operation. The dream became a reality in 2013 when the Monadnock Food Co-op opened its doors to the public on April 3rd. A major milestone was achieved between 2019 and 2020, as on December 15, 2019, the co-op successfully acquired its current facility, along with adjacent land, facilitating a substantial expansion of 6,700 square feet. This expansion project reached its completion in January 2021, resulting in a newly enlarged store encompassing an area of 19,900 square feet. In 2023, the co-op celebrated its remarkable 10th anniversary in April with its annual Earth Fest, a three-day flash sale, local tastings, and a host of other festive activities.

Does your co-op sponsor any events, programs, classes, or workshops?

MLH: The Co-op sponsors a myriad of events, workshops, classes and more throughout the Monadnock Region and southwestern New Hampshire. We take great pleasure in organizing the yearly Monadnock Region Earth Festival. Our event transforms the area from Railroad Square to the Co-op, bustling with local vendors, artists, farmers, and producers who gather to commemorate both the Earth and our community’s dedication to sustainability.

Does your co-op specialize in a certain sector of the food market?

MLH: Our commitment lies in the wide variety of produce we offer, sourced locally, seasonally, and globally. We prioritize certified organic and seasonally fresh produce, especially from Keene, NH, and the nearby regions, aligning with our mission to promote local, sustainable agriculture. With deliveries of fresh produce, including organic fruits, locally grown greens, and vegetables arriving over ten times each week, we guarantee that you receive the freshest and most delicious produce within our community.

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The Monadnock Food Co-op is a community-owned grocery store in located at 34 Cypress St., Keene, NH. (Courtesy photo)

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