Downtown Grocery Store? Make It New Leaf Market!

There’s been a lot of chatter this week about solidifying a downtown grocery store. Our response? The answer is New Leaf Market! When talking to friends and neighbors about this initiative, here are 5 quick hits that can help you explain what our store will be:

  1. New Leaf Market, you mean the Winter Farmers Market?
    No!  New Leaf Market will be a full-service (you can get your cheerios, Kashi & toothpaste), member-owned, cooperative grocery store that will feature local, healthy, fair-priced food for the community.  It will look like your neighborhood grocery store with aisles of produce, dairy, bulk foods, meats, beer & wine, non-perishables, health & beauty, deli, bakery and so much more.  Not open yet, but on its way!

  2. Membership?  I just want to shop there! 
    Everyone can shop at New Leaf Market! You don’t have to be a member-owner to enjoy the high quality food, fair prices and educational information provided by New Leaf Foods.  You just get added perks if you are.

  3. I want a Trader Joes/Whole Foods, will I like New Leaf Market?
    Absolutely!  If you want a Trader Joes or Whole Foods, you will want New Leaf Market!  We are the local, authentic option when it comes to healthy, whole foods.  We will carry many of the things you will find at either of those stores, but will offer more locally produced and grown food.  Plus it’s owned by OUR community. Not someone in another state, meaning more of our dollars spent at New Leaf Market will stay in the community. 

  4. You say Downtown, where? 
    New Leaf Market Co-op will be located at the corner of Main and Cedar Streets, in downtown Green Bay with good parking and public transportation access. One of the goals of New Leaf Market is to contribute to the revitalization of downtown.

  5. I want to shop there now!
    New Leaf Market Co-op will open as soon as we secure our financing.  Over 800 member-owners already support the vision of New Leaf Market having purchased their $180 share (one time cost), having pledged over $360,000 in member-owner investments and continuing to spread the word about New Leaf Market.  There is more work to be done, but we are taking the right steps.

Help make New Leaf Market the solution to Mayor Schmitt’s goal.  Become a member-owner hereThis e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you want to volunteer!

Nominees for New Leaf Market Co-op Board

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2014 Nominations for the New Leaf Market Co-op Board of Directors
Recommended by the Nominating Committee

Recommended nominees were selected based on the following criteria:

  • Skills necessary for a successful board
  • Diversity of skills represented
  • Skill coverage in the following key areas - people who have experience in co-ops, retail grocery management, local food vendors and distribution, store design, marketing, legal, fundraising, and financing
  • Experience
  • Proven dedication and interest to the success of New Leaf Market Co-op through ongoing involvement with the co-op and/or organizations that will or have collaborated with the co-op

*The elected board directors will serve 3 years beginning with the first board meeting after the elections.

New Leaf Market Cooperative Nominee Background and Descriptions

James LemskyIn addition to my personal interest in New Leaf Market Co-op, I bring worldwide experience in marketing consumer products to the natural foods industry. I have contacts in the industry for sourcing products through my former company, which was the lead company in establishing USDA organic regulations, and through my service on the National Board of the Natural Foods Association. I will also use my budgeting and marketing skills to help New Leaf become a thriving business.

Tyler Lenz – I am the Cash Manager at Integrys Energy Group and have nearly a decade of experience in corporate finance exclusively within the treasury department of this organization.   I enthusiastically bring my financial experience to the New Leaf Market board to help support its mission and values.   I am the fourth generation in my family to have involvement in the grocery industry, as my grandfather previously owned and operated the small neighborhood grocery Lenz’s Keenway in Little Chute, WI.

As a lifelong resident of the Green Bay area, I have a great interest in seeing our community develop in a positive direction. Food choices and availability touch the lives of each one of our residents, and creating access to healthy and local food is an incredible way that we can make an impact in our community that will last for generations to come.

Lynn Walter I grew up on our family farm and worked my way through school as cook at a co-op restaurant in Madison, WI. On the farm, I learned that good food depends upon deep knowledge, hard work, and fertile earth—and that we should never take it for granted. At the co-op I learned the importance of working together as a community to promote healthy food access for everyone. As a founder of UWGB’s Center for Food in Community and Culture my goal has been to discover ways that people around the world are working to sustain good food, healthy people, and a fertile earth for generations to come.

My experience and passion for promoting healthy, local food will help sustain the time-consuming and complicated project of establishing New Leaf Market Cooperative. My vision for New Leaf Market Co-op is that it be a healthy community food hub for Northeast Wisconsin, connecting consumers, farmers, and artisan producers to support health and wellness, prosperous local farm and food businesses, good jobs, equitable communities, and a thriving local food economy.

Good Food for Good Health, Now and for Generations

In case you missed it, click this link to the Green Bay Press-Gazette article by our board president Lynn Walter in the Sunday, Aug. 4 paper. Lynn begins by quoting our mission: "Good food for good health, now and for generations." She goes on to credit all the sustained, collaborative efforts of our member-owners and volunteers with getting us to the point where we are ready to launch the capital campaign to make New Leaf Market Co-op a reality! The 2012 Envisioning the Future Conference brought 240 community leaders together to develop a vision for Brown County in 2020. They made improving our healthy by improving our knowledge of and access to healthy foods a priority--including the specific goal that: "healthy food co-ops are flourishing." This goal can be achieved by 2014, six years ahead of schedule, by investing in New Leaf's vision of a healthy future.   

New Leaf is Working on a Site!

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We’ve had an exciting month with our New Leaf site development and have worked to keep you informed as the negotiations and agreements have come together. We are now working with the 900 Cedar Street property, the Bus Depot of Green Bay at 800 Cedar Street and three parcels owned by the City as the site for New Leaf Market and New Leaf Foods. We will be analyzing this site as a whole and working through contingencies.

We have received some questions on how this site was chosen and how we plan to develop it.

It is quite an accomplishment to have found a site that meets the extensive list of criteria necessary to serve the needs of a grocery store. Take a look below at the site criteria list:

  • Population density: within a 20 minute drive and
    high density employment
  • Parking capacity and configuration
  • Located within a USDA designated food desert
  • Trade area access: location on major street,
    interchange, highway and bus line
  • Egress/ingress: points of entry ease of
    entry/exit, truck loading
  • Site: orientation, expansion
    opportunity, zoning, environmental issues, neighborhood
  • Building: to accommodate desired square feet,
    overhead door, outdoor seating area, appropriate ceiling height,
  • Visibility and retail synergy
  • Ability to house both New Leaf Market and New
    Leaf Food’s events
  • Financial: cost per sq. ft., lease and purchase
    options, located in Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) district, and/or New Market
    Tax Credit (NMTC) eligible.

One question that’s been asked is what will happen to the buildings presently on these sites? Greyhound, who is a tenant in the 800 Cedar Street building, has been in contact with Green Bay Metro as an option for relocation. The present analysis of the 900 Cedar Street building is that it is no longer structurally sound and has experienced significant water damage. Moving the structure would not be advisable given the condition of the brick structure, yet harvesting some of the unpainted brick and hardwood floors appears to be an option.

Your contribution as member/owners is the foundation of this project. Thank you for sharing the vision with us.

Please use the opportunity of our site announcement to invite people you know to also become a member/owner of New Leaf Market.

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