The public is invited to “Ketch-Up with the Bethlehem Food Co-Op”, an online Zoom gathering scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 20 at 7 p.m.
The session will include a presentation about the group’s efforts to bring a full-service, community-owned grocery story to the north downtown area of Bethlehem. Lease negotiations are underway for the undisclosed location.
The co-op is a member-based organization, with each paying a one-time equity payment; this entitles them to vote on decisions about the organization and its operations.
In addition to the lease negotiations, the co-op recently hired an architect to design the interior of the store, issued a Request for Proposal for a Project Manager to guide the build-out, and finalized the job description for the store’s General Manager.
“We recently passed the 700 member mark,” said Kelly Allen, chair of the food co-op’s board. “This puts us in a great position as we get ready to announce our location and kick off a capital campaign for the financing we need. More members makes for a stronger co-op, and builds our case to secure funding.”
Thursday’s session will share information about the co-op’s efforts in the area of education, community involvement, supporting local businesses and producers, and addressing issues of food insecurity in our area.
“The pandemic has really shown how vulnerable we are to breaks in the food supply chain,” said Allen. “With our store we will offer an opportunity for local producers to sell their product, year-round, and for everyone – whether they are a member or not – to shop locally.”
Edward J. Gallagher, Bethlehem immigrant, retired, nearly 50 years as Professor of American Literature at Lehigh University, known as "Dr. G" and "Conan the Grammarian" to students, whose virtual world avatar "EdwardScholarhands" stares at you here, has reinvented himself as the Bethlehem Gadfly.
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