One of our amazing Member-Owners recently traveled cross-country. On their way they stopped at food co-ops and shared anecdotes and photos from each visit with us:
In 1973, the Boise Co-op got it’s start. Today it comprises 3 stores with a shared parking lot. The main store is about double the size of the current Brattleboro Food Co-op. They have wide offerings in all departments.
Again, upon entering the store we encountered helpful staff. In fact, before we even got out of our car, the manager of the Co-op Pet Store came out to greet us when he saw the NH license plate. It’s great to see reactions when they ask what brings us there and we tell them we are visiting Co-ops across the country. He was the first “ambassador” for the store that we met, but everyone on staff was great.
Next to the Pet Store, which was small in size but complete with food, treats and sundries for dogs, cats, etc., was the WINE STORE. This was at least twice the space of Prime Roast in Keene. Their staff was also very present and engaging — helpful and also very knowledgeable about their products.
The main store contained vast offerings in all departments along with many household goods. The deli/prepared food section staff were very helpful in describing what they offered, also an extensive variety, and were curious about what we had found at the other Co-ops we have visited. We got a balsamic beet salad (very simple: cooked beets, chilled with a dressing of balsamic vinegar, grape seed oil, salt and pepper) – delicious!
They have an interesting program currently. For each bag of your own that you use, you receive a wooden token (very much like the ones at the Farmer’s Market for Credit Card purchases and SNAP cards). Just prior to exiting the store, they have a table with three jars, each representing a non-profit in the area with a description of the mission of each. Shoppers can then place their tokens to support the cause(s) of their choice. I have a sample token for you.
The Boise Co-op complex has more than can be appreciated in one visit. We will return when we head East to find out more.