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Eat Local Sudbury closes doors

Sudbury Living Magazine February 20, 2018 Our Town No Comments on Eat Local Sudbury closes doors

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The Eat Local Cooperative team, under the recommendation of its board of director and membership, voted to close their Larch St store and dissolve the co-operative.

In a statement, the team said, “Over the past few years we have strived to make changes to make our co-op financially sustainable, but we have not managed to recover from the financial crisis in which we found ourselves in 2016. With the help of our dedicated members and customers, we have managed to pay off our debts to our farmers and producers. However, the steady decline in membership and sales over the last two years has led us to make the difficult decision to close our operations.

“The board’s recommendation comes upon review of the co-op’s finances at the end of the 2017 fiscal year, looking ahead to the 2018 growing season. We cannot in good conscience ask for commitments from our farmers and CSA members without the certainty of being able to fulfill our commitments to them. Though this decision is difficult for everyone involved, we believe that it is the wisest course of action available.

“It has been an honour and a privilege to work with our local farmers and community members over the last ten years. We are proud of the work that we have done in bringing local food to the people of Sudbury and we believe in the community that has rallied around us. Although this is the end of our journey, we hope that it will be the beginning of something new for the local food movement in Sudbury.”

Eat Local Sudbury was the winner of the 2017 Community Builder Award in the environment category for its work over the past decade to support and promote local farmers and food producers, while educating consumers about the benefits to our bodies, our community, and our planet of eating food grown and produced in and around northeastern Ontario.

Eat Local Sudbury received the Premier’s Award for Agri-Food Innovation Excellence (2009), and a Healthy Community Recognition Award (2009).

The success of ELS was thanks to leadership from a volunteer board, a succession of dedicated managers, hardworking staff and enthusiastic volunteers.

The Eat Local movement, sometimes referred to as the 100-mile (250-kilometre) diet, promotes locally grown food as an alternative to food imported from places such as Chile, New Zealand or California that is delivered with high environmental costs. Locally grown food reduces the carbon footprint.

The movement also encourages farmers to stay on the land instead of selling it to housing developers and adding to urban sprawl.

Many of the farmers who supplied the Sudbury co-operative with products are “ecological growers” who make an effort to adhere to environmentally safe practices.

Sign up at http://www.liveablesudbury.org/eating_local if you’d like to talk about possibilities like group CSA’s, bulk orders, and other ideas to make it easier for us to eat local food and support our local farmers.

If you sign up Coalition for a Liveable Sudbury will be in touch about getting people together to share ideas. In the meantime, don’t forget to check out where you can find our products and producers at http://www.eatlocalsudbury.com/producers.

You can also connect with other members on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/249382792228253/

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