People’s Food Co-op 2017 • Education, Partnerships, Donations, Club, Community, Volunteering, Farmer’s Market

People’s Food Co-op
Rochester, MN & La Crosse, WI


Educational Programs

Whether it be an on-site cooking class or lecture, or a special program designed for your school or business, PFC staff provides educational programming to hundreds of adults and children throughout the La Crosse area each year. We share our knowledge about natural foods, organic production, local agriculture, cooperatives, cooking, gardening, and a myriad of other topics in fun and engaging programs designed to capture your imagination and spark further learning.

Community Partnerships

People’s Food Co-op forms partnerships with many local community groups and events throughout the year including: Minnesota FoodShare, The Earth Day coalition, Hillview Urban Agriculture Center, Great River Folk Fest, Coulee Partners for Sustainability, Dowtown Mainstreet Inc., etc. Through these partnerships we contribute staff time, volunteers, ideas, solutions, classroom space, newsletter advertising, networking, and other co-op resources to aid in the success of mission related partnerships throughout our communities.


Our cooperative provides thousands of dollars in cash support and in-kind donations to deserving local efforts throughout the region every year. Our contributions often come at a time when a small amount of funding, or lack of it, can make or break the efforts of a local organization.

Co-op Explorers

Hey kids and adults! PFC Explorer Club launches in La Crosse! Already up and running in Rochester, the Explorer Club issues every kid 12 and under a passport, an official card, temporary tattoo, and a free banana every time s(he) comes in the store! Sign up at customer service, flash the card every time, get a sticker to wear in the store, and the free banana will be in the produce department!

MN Foodshare March Campaign

For the fourth consecutive year, People’s Food Co-op—Rochester will be joining our fellow co-ops throughout the state to collect food and raise funds for MN FoodShare’s March Campaign. Every year the campaign brings together hundreds of companies, civic groups, schools, and congregations to help keep 300 food shelves statewide stocked throughout the year.

Our efforts will go to supporting Channel One and Southeast MN food shelves. In addition to wooden nickels, we will be collecting cash and food and selling prebagged groceries for FoodShare.

The People’s Food Co-op Community Fund

In 2003 People’s Food Co-op received a matching funds grant from the Twin Pines Co-operative Foundation to create our own philanthropic fund.  The co-op took the $5,000 in grant money and added another $5,000 of our own funds to establish The People’s Food Co-op Community Fund.

The People’s Food Co-op Community Fund (PFCCF) works much like any foundation; the contributions that you and the Co-op make to the fund are part of the permanent endowment. The endowment is invested in other co-ops and the interest earned is used by the PFCCF to make grants to local nonprofit organizations and cooperatives.

Unlike many other foundations or endowment funds, the PFCCF is invested in co-ops, not in the stock market. So unlike other funds that were negatively impacted by volatility in the stock market, our community fund continued to grow. The PFCCF enhances People’s Food Co-op’s ability to positively impact our community, which is a fundamental part of our mission. Over the past several years, through PFCCF grants we’ve funded community garden projects, community health programs, and farm to school programs—to name a few. 

PFC Volunteer Night

La Crosse Food Forest PFC Volunteer Night at the Food Forest will be June 7. We will be working and weeding to the sounds of an African drum group!

Farmer’s Market

PFC will be sponsoring a farmers’ market at Rochester’s Thursdays on First festival.


Davis Food Co-op 2017 • Classes, Round Up, Sponsorships & Donations

Davis Food Co-op
Davis, CA


The Davis Food Co-op holds cooking classes in the Teaching Kitchen at 537 G Street, across the street from the Co-op. Most are Demonstration style. In these classes, the instructor will demonstrate how to make the dishes and give you samples. Classes designated as Hands On allow you to participate in the cooking. All Kids classes are hands on and accommodate children from age 3 to 6 or 7-12 depending on the class level. Children who can speak well enough to be understood and are potty trained are welcome. Teen classes are hands on and open to students aged 12-18.

Keep an eye on our calendar for free workshops taught on our patio! These cover topics like Grain Salads, Cold Brew Coffee and Tea and Quick Pickles. Follow us on Facebook to get notified when these are scheduled.

Round Up at the Registers

Loose change really adds up! Round Up At The Registers is our answer to scrip. Next time you check out, say “I’d like to Round Up,” and we’ll turn that change into a sturdy check for the school of the month. You can donate more if you like, just tell the cashier to round up to your preferred amount. This program is available to all DJUSD elementary & junior high PTAs

Sponsorships and Donations

California Center for Cooperative Development (

California Climate & Agriculture Network 2017 California Climate & Agriculture Summit (

California Duck Days (

Davis Community Church Contra for a Cause ( The Co-op sponsors Contra For A Cause, a live music and barn dance event at the DCC Fellowship Hall. Funds raised will help local refugee resettlement efforts through Opening Doors Inc.

Davis Farm to School (

Davis Farmers Market Picnic in the Park (

Davis Music Festival (

Hoes Down Harvest Festival (

Odd Fellows Breakfast with the Bunny and Breakfast with Santa

Pamela Trokanski Dance Theatre (

Tuleyome (

Winters Farm to School Bastille Day (

Yolo Children’s Alliance Aloha YoloFundraiser (

Yolo County Food Bank- donation of Thanksgiving turkeys

Yolo County Library Juneteenth Celebration (

Basics Cooperative 2017 • Wooden Nickels, Block Party, Explorers, & Classes

Basics Cooperative
Janesville, WI

Wooden Nickel Donations

Every year, Basics donates to 12 local non-profits through the Wooden Nickel Program at checkouts. Organizations are featured 3 at a time, for 3-month increments. Since there are so many amazing non-profits in our area we leave it up to our Co-op Owners to decide which 12 will be featured! Owners vote via a survey sent out each May.

Customers can pick up a wooden nickel at the register each time they shop and drop it into the collector at Customer Service. Basics donates 5 cents for each wooden nickel. It’s a great reminder that our little actions can add up to a lot of good.

Block Party

The first Basics Block Party and annual meeting will be held this year. This family-friendly event and fundraiser will be held in the parking lot and the road next to the store, with local farms, neighbor businesses, community partners, and local food trucks in attendance. The annual Co-op Owner meeting will be held during the block party.

-Admission is FREE and open to the public
-The first 100 families will receive a FREE goodie bag stuffed with natural foods, supplements and personal care
-Every family will get 1 FREE raffle ticket; raffle prizes will include a week’s worth of groceries, a lifetime co-op membership and more!

-Games and children’s activities will include chalk art, face painting, tug of war, bean bag toss and water balloon toss
-Additional raffle tickets, food and drink sales will benefit local non-profit Acts of Kindness. Acts of Kindness recently had to reduce their operating hours due to budget shortfalls; we hope to help them get back to full operations!

Co-op Explorers Program

The Co-op Explorers program is FREE and open to all kids ages 3-12.  Co-op Explorers can pick up 2 Healthy Challenges each month at the Customer Service desk and turn them in for FREE smoothie and fruit coupons! Healthy Challenges might be activities, trivia, arts and crafts or other learning activities related to health and wellness, natural and organic foods, our environment or supporting our local farms and community. Co-op Explorers also get to choose a healthy treat or toy from the basket at Customer Service every time they shop!


Many classes and workshops are offered in the Basics Community Room, which includes a full kitchen for cooking classes. Local chefs, nutritionists, naturopathic doctors and wellness practitioners share information and instruction on a range of topics including ayurveda, aromatherapy, yoga and t’ai chi. For information on upcoming events, visit


South Royalton Market 2017 • Be our Guest, Donations, Reading Club, & Power of Produce

South Royalton Market
Royalton, VT


Be Our Guest

We pay for a meal once/month at the Royalton Area Senior Center.  Senior Center staff and volunteers prepare the meal but the Market covers the cost. 

This grew out of a conversation about 10 years ago when we were talking about ways to increase access to good food. Most of the discussion focused on children and families. We realized that seniors often face similar financial barriers. Many of us are relative newcomers to the area. We were attracted to the White River Valley because of the strength of the local communities — the communities that the seniors had shaped in earlier years. This program is one way we can thank them back. 


About 35 people typically come to the meal. The Senior Center director often schedules live music or another activity on that day.


Got Extra?

Got Extra is one way that the Market gets fresh summer produce to people who might not otherwise have it. There are three steps in the process: farmers or gardeners with more vegetables than they can use; the Market’s Outreach Coordinator, who serves as distributor; and diligent volunteers at local food pantries and meal sites.

Originally, the Market served as a drop-off site for farmers and home gardeners on specified days. As our business has grown, this has become impractical — we just don’t have the space in our receiving area or the walk-in cooler. 

We’re on the verge of an expansion which will give us more room. In the meantime, we’ve pared the program down to one very generous local farm. The Market’s Outreach Coordinator visits the farm, loads up with extra produce, then connects with two local food shelf volunteers. One food shelf distributes in within hours, the other on the following day. 

We run this program every other week in July and August, and one week in Sept. and Oct. We average around 800 pounds in a year.

Says Raylene Lemery, organizer of Royalton’s community dinners, “I can’t begin to express the help that comes from the co-op and the farmers who donate food, and what it means. When you give someone a head of lettuce and see the smile on their face…” 

Food Shelf Donations

We have a year-round collection box by the register for shelf-stable products. Local food shelf organizers are also our customers. We encourage them to empty the box when they shop here. Serves three local food pantries (two that aren’t part of Got Extra) and the Royalton Community Dinners.

Library Summer Reading Club

Each summer our Outreach Coordinator does one session at the local library’s summer reading club. This includes reading a story, discussion (about cooperation or inclusiveness in some way), and hands-on activities. This includes chicken cups (transforming a plastic cup into an instrument that you can make cluck like a chicken) and preparing food for a healthy snack. Children take home leftovers. 15-40 kids participate.

Power of Produce (PoP) Club

Working w/ the Royalton Farmers Market coordinator to support this new program. First time this year. Here’s a link to the national program:


Seward Community Co-op 2017 • Community giving, Food program, Neighborhood Forest, Grants, Donations & Classes

Seward Community Co-op
Minneapolis, MN

SEED – Our community giving program allows customers to “round-up” their grocery or cafe bill for recipient organizations that share our commitment to a healthy community. To date, we have raised nearly $1.25 million for local nonprofits through SEED.

Recent SEED Recipients

April 2017: In the Heart of the Beast
(62,300 customers donated $28,472)

March 2017: Isuroon
(61,447 customers donated $27,767)

February 2017: MAD DADS
(47,668 customers donated $21,615)

January 2017: Kente Circle Training Institute
(52,913 customers donated $23,422)

December 2016: Sabathani Community Center
(53,120 customers donated $24,558)

Midwest Food Connection – Seward Co-op is the single largest sponsor of MFC, a program that brings practical and interactive lessons about healthful eating to dozens of schools in the Twin Cities area.

Midwest Food Connection (MFC) sends educators into elementary school classrooms to teach about healthy eating, local foods, as well as sustainable and organic agriculture.

  • They provide children with opportunities to study and taste natural and organic foods.
  • They create an understanding in children of the origins and traditions of regionally produced foods.
  • They teach children about the methods and benefits of organic and sustainable agriculture.
  • They organize and lead field trips to local diversified farms.

Neighborhood Forest – We are a long-time sponsor of this program that has helped more than 45,000 school children plant over 24,000 trees across 10 states.

Neighborhood Forest gives trees (6-12 inches in size) to school children. For free. Every Earth Day. They do this in cooperation with parents, school administrators and teachers. They agree to give trees away for free, provided schools are willing to distribute them to their students and parents are willing to plant and care for them with their kids.

Seward Community Fund (SCF) – the SCF embodies our commitment to grow not just as a business, but also as a community resource for organizations whose work aligns with our vision for a healthy community. SCF grants are awarded to organizations whose work aligns with our Ends Statement.

Community Donations Program. –  Seward Co-op gift cards enable dozens of community nonprofits to purchase food for fundraising or volunteer events for their organizations.

Classes – Seward Co-op offers a variety of nutrition and cooking classes at both its Franklin and Friendship stores.