Troy co-op slated to open this summer

Troy Food Coop sketch

A sketch of what the Troy Food Cooperative could look like by this summer.

By Jessica Pasko

So, you know that proposed Troy food co-op there's been so much buzz about?

Well if everything goes according to plan, it looks like you'll be able to shop there by this summer.

Here's the scoop.

Eric Paul, general manager of The Troy Community Food Cooperative says preparations are under way for the new store in the former Pioneer Food Market on Congress Street, thanks in part to the $270,000 re-development loan from the Empire State Development Corporation's Upstate Regional Blueprint Fund that was announced last week.

The Troy Community Food Cooperative has been in the works since roughly October 2006, when organizers began trying to raise money to get the project off the ground. (Downtown Troy hasn't had a grocery store since 2005). As of a little over a week ago, the project's raised almost $2.1 million and signed up some 700 member-owners. That means it can -- finally -- move past the theoretical stage and into actual construction. Paul says prep has already begun on the building, which is slated to open this summer.

Paul says they're still determining exactly how to best fit the community's needs, but the Troy co-op will definitely involve a mix of local, organic and natural products along with conventional groceries. Currently he anticipates they'll have about 70 percent natural and organic products, thanks to the growing interest in healthier eating. The co-op's also been working with the folks from the Troy Farmers' Market to establish connections with local producers.

Paul's no stranger to co-ops -- he's a former manager of the Honest Weight Food Co-op , where he helped establish the store's cheese and specialty foods sections as well as set up the meat-buying program.

Unlike the HWFC, Paul says there won't really be a working member program, although there will be special sales for members and probably member appreciation events along with other member benefits .

And no, you won't have to be a member to shop there.

Find It

Pioneer Food Co-op
71 Congress Street
Troy, NY 12180

Comments

This has been going on for SO long now!

I'm actually glad that I didn't join the co-op in 2006, or any of the following years when they "just needed a few more members to open," since I'm not moving out of Troy and probably would have never seen the fruits of my investment. As for this latest round...I guess I'll believe it when I see it.

It will be great when it opens. I think an added benefit would be able to email your shopping list and pick up your order. Maybe delivery? Parking is tight, it might be something to look into.

This would take care of my final excuse to not move to downtown Troy!

Will this be an alternative to the Honest Weight Food Coop? I hope so. That place is just too dirty and unsafe to shop in anymore (and they're not moving anytime soon, apparently).

im also hoping for an alternative to honest weight. i just cant bring myself to go there, its so dingy and dismal... unnecessarily so.

For me the alternative to honest weight or the lack of a nice grocery is the Asia Super Market. Sure it's not organic (quality/variety is what is important to me) but the availability and diversity of produce, meat, and fish is hands down the best in the area. Very clean, not only for an Asian market, but in general.

@Kim, @B: (is that the B I know and love, or did he conveniently forgot to pimp his blog this time?) You guys on crack? Wondering if you have been there recently. Unsafe? Are you trying to cartwheel or something? The place has gotten bigger, and is as clean as the Hannaford I shop at. And pretty helpful more often than not; I was looking for bee's wax to cook, and the guy at the coop called several places around to ask where I could find some. Same request at Hannaford got me a mind your beeswax joke.

.

@S - i dont care what you were looking for to cook, my comment wasn't regarding the availability of merchandise.

@MattW - thank you for a helpful comment, i have been meaning to check that.

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