We are a group of regular folks working hard to open a community-owned grocery store in McHenry County, IL and we hope you will join us!
Our mission is to build a LOCAL food COOPERATIVE promoting a HEALTHY, ETHICAL and RESILIENT COMMUNITY.
Our Core Values
1. Promote and foster better food choices
2. Cultivate and strengthen our local economy
3. Inspire and empower community
4. Champion environmentally responsible practices
The idea was first hatched between two friends in a conversation about improving the resilience of our community. Many conversations later, in March 2013, a group of about a dozen people gathered on a cold winter evening and made the collective decision to do whatever it takes to open a community-owned grocery store in McHenry County. They organized a steering team, surveyed the community and pulled together a mailing list of people who like the idea of opening a food co-op. Since that first meeting, there have been many, many more.
In March of 2014, the McHenry County Food Cooperative (DBA Food Shed Co-op) was incorporated under Illinois Cooperative Law. Shortly after incorporation, we celebrated our birthday on Earth Day and started to sell ownership shares in the co-op. The first board of directors was elected by our owners in October of 2014. We are continually reading, networking, hosting guest speakers, taking field trips to visit food co-ops and attending workshops, webinars and conferences to learn more about cooperatives. We are hard a work, spreading that knowledge to our community through events, movie screenings, webinars and workshops. Our first "official" year was a big success. Highlights so far include:
- participation in more than 150 events
- winning a USDA LFPP Grant
- completion of a market study in which consultants, specialists in cooperatives and the natural foods grocery industry, determined that we have what it takes to be successful
- and closing our first year with over 300 owners
Our owners and volunteers continue working every day to spread the word about the many benefits of a community-owned grocery store and our ownership numbers continue to GROW daily, with over 500 owners on board to date.
How can you help?
If the idea of a grocery store, owned by members of the community, with more local, more organic, and healthy, natural foods resonates with you, please get involved today. JOIN our email list, volunteer or become an owner. Help GROW a community-owned grocery store for McHenry County.
- Build community and strengthen the local economy
- Support local farmers and other local food artisans
- Pay our workers a living wage
- Stock items that are sustainably produced
- Promote food justice and accessibility to healthy food
- Provide clear labeling and full product disclosure
- Educate the community about healthy eating
- Add your goals as you will have a voice and vote!
Food Shed Co-op is owned and democratically controlled by our owners (members), our store will be open to all - everyone will be welcome to shop at the co-op.