Food co-op to make a move

The Great Basin Community Food Co-op is planning for a new location in 2011, the group announced in a flyer for its June 5 annual membership meeting.

Though no specific sites have been chosen, co-op cofounder Amber Sallaberry says GBCFC has feelers out for a place that’s a good deal bigger than their current 700 square foot location at 542 1/2 Plumas St., though in the same general area and with access to public transportation. The Plumas Street lease runs out in January 2012, and the group doesn’t want to move during the winter, so 2011 is the year, says Sallaberry. But first, the group has to secure its finances.

Despite record high payouts to local farmers and a doubling of membership to 3,000 people this year, the co-op is facing financial struggles. It’s roughly $13,000 in the red. “This is kind of our make-it-or-break-it year,” says Sallaberry. The GBCFC particularly needs to get in the black in order be eligible for commercial loans as well as to get a Unified Supplied Buyers Contract with the National Cooperative Grocers Association’s. Such a contract would allow them to lower prices and become more market competitive, says Sallaberry, but they can’t get it unless they can prove themselves to be fiscally sound.

The co-op expects to save about $20,000 to $30,000 in member equity by the end of the year to set aside for a move. The viability of moving and other issues will be discussed at the annual meeting, which is also a family friendly potluck with music, games and a bonfire, beginning at 5:30 the River School, 7777 White Fir St.