HANCOCK — Co–op stores provide customers with organic foods and locally grown produce. ABC 10’s Reporter Rick Allen takes a look at what a co–op does when winter is in full swing.
Co–op stores are known for having fresh, organic foods from local suppliers. Keweenaw Cooperative in Hancock is a member–owned business first started in 1973 and is open to the public.
Keweenaw Cooperative General Manager Curt Webb said, “We work with local producers whenever we can. Typically, here, that’s seasonal, although there are other things that are value–added products that we can get year round.”
Other suppliers include regional cooperative warehouses and larger natural foods distributors. But for many Upper Peninsula co–ops, local supplies are cut off when winter hits.
Webb said, “There are certain storage crops that we can still get right now. We’ll have winter squash, onions, that kind of thing, even carrots and other root vegetables. But tomatoes, your leafy greens, things like that, where we get those from becomes farther and farther away.”
Customers at Co–ops expect to pay a little more for high–quality organic foods, but they have other reasons for supporting their local store.
Webb said, “We really try to focus on community. We try to focus on customer service, and so, I think the shopping experience brings a lot of people here and keeps them coming back.”