NOFA Summer Conference Presentations, 2017

The Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) sponsored a special track on “Co-operatives in the Food System” at the annual NOFA Summer Conference, August 11-13, 2017 at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA.

The Co-op Track workshops on Friday, August 11 and Saturday, August 12, 2017 addressed a variety of ways in which co-operative enterprises contribute to more sustainable local food systems through a range of topics, from food safety rules for small producers and co-ops to practical steps for farmers interested in forming co-ops and business owners considering converting their enterprise to a co-operative, to strategies for using the co-op model to address food insecurity. The sessions, organized in collaboration with the Brattleboro Food Co-op, Cooperative Fund of New England, the New England Farmers Union, Project Bread, the Valley Alliance of Worker Co-ops, and Visionaries Public Television Series included:


Who Gets to Eat? Co-ops Addressing Food Justice

Learn how food co-ops are partnering with anti-hunger organizations to better meet the needs of all community members by increasing access to healthy, local food and member-ownership?  Learn about how food co-ops are leveraging community ownership of their grocery stores to make healthy, local food more accessible.

  • Bonnie Hudspeth: Membership & Outreach Manager, Neighboring Food Co-op Association
  • Dorian Gregory : Loan & Outreach Officer, Cooperative Fund of New England
  • Jon Megas-Russell: Marketing & Community Relations Manager, Brattleboro Food Co-op
  • Maria E. Infante: Director of Community Outreach, Project Bread

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Co-ops & Economic Democracy: Why Go Co-op?

Co-ops are an effective model of economic democracy, spreading ownership, retaining jobs, and rooting businesses in our communities. How do co-ops strengthen our regional food system and economy? Learn about the process of start-up, conversion and operation, and share your ideas for a co-op in your community.

  • Erbin Crowell: Executive Director, Neighboring Food Co-op Association.
  • Adam Trott: Executive Director, Valley Alliance of Worker Co-ops.

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“In the Spirit of Co-operation” Video 

Visionaries Producer Bill Mosher and Erbin Crowell of the Neighboring Food Co-op Association screened the Visionaries PBS Documentary “In the Spirit of Co-operation,” celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the National Co-operative Business Association and featuring Massachusetts’ own Real Pickles Co-op.

  • Bill Mosher: Executive Producer, Visionaries Public Television Series
  • Erbin Crowell: Executive Director, Neighboring Food Co-op Association.

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