Update to Members
Hello New Leaf Co-op Members,
Financing New Leaf Market Co-op means continuing to grow our membership, to share our resources and to work very hard to realize our vision of a healthy community food hub owned by all of us. It also means finding a site where a professional market analysis projects profitability and cash flow attractive enough to secure external funds.
With the help of several downtown Green Bay business advocates, New Leaf Market Co-op volunteers looked for five years for that site in downtown Green Bay, where we saw a need and wanted to fill it. Because we were not able to secure a feasible site during a reasonable time period, at the end of 2014 we announced that we would expand our search area to include sites outside of downtown Green Bay, while also continuing to search in downtown.
At the same time, we commissioned another market study, which identified a De Pere site as a good one, because it had an existing building on a main thoroughfare with ample parking. Despite this, we still simultaneously explored another downtown Green Bay site with a potential developer; but it became clear that the timeline was too distant. As a result, in July of this year, we shifted our primary efforts to a De Pere site, all the while continuing to be alert to downtown Green Bay locations.
Our thinking is that it is better to open a full-service, community member-owned grocery store featuring healthy, local food and sponsoring programs to improve healthy food access sooner, rather than to wait even longer for another site to become available in downtown Green Bay.
Because the De Pere site aligns well with the market study and business plan, our plan is to develop a successful business there, then potentially open a second store in downtown Green Bay in the future. We believe that downtown Green Bay is a great place to live and work and want to be a part of making it grow. Therefore, we continue to partner with the New Leaf Winter Farmers Market presented by Bellin Health in downtown Green Bay. Additionally, our non-profit organization, New Leaf Foods, is sponsoring the Green Bay Garden Blitz and promoting community-supported agriculture (CSAs), as well as many other programs that support healthy food education and access, especially for families with modest means. The non-profit will have an office and community meeting/classroom in the store, giving a permanent home to continue to expand its healthy food access programs in the Green Bay area.
Your dedication, ideas and support are critical to opening a cooperative grocery store in our community, one that works for everyone who wants and needs it and that helps support local farmers. Thank you for sharing your knowledge, donating your time as a volunteer, recruiting others to be co-op members, and running for the board, where you can put relevant expertise to work in order to help us secure a site and make the co-op a reality!
New Leaf Market Board of Directors:
Peter Angilello, Library Media Specialist, Green Bay Area Public Schools (retired)
Karen Early, UW-Cooperative Extension
Katelyn Hanke, Manager of Financial Analysis for Mergers and Acquisitions, TeamHealth
Megan Olson-Hunt, Assistant Professor of Statistics, UWGB
Lynn Walter, Founding Director, UWGB Bay Center for Food in Community and Culture
Jim Lemsky, SR VP Europe (Retired) Hain Celestial Group