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Our Mission

South Philly Food Co-op's mission is to use food as a force for good - at our tables, in our community and for our planet. 

Our Story

South Philly Food Co-op is South Philly’s only community-owned grocery store. It offers fresh, local foods at fair prices and serves as a hub for our South Philly community.

The Co-op is cooperatively owned and democratically controlled by a community of South Philly neighbors. By leveraging our combined purchasing power, we’re taking ownership of our local economy by keeping our hard-earned dollars right here at home. We keep it real at our store, sharing honest information about our values, products, and prices.

We offer food you can trust to be good for your health and our planet, as we prioritize fair-trade and sustainably-produced products free of harmful additives and chemicals. We believe in supporting our neighborhood businesses, so we prioritize local and regional foods.

The best thing about cooperative ownership is that when the community speaks, the Co-op listens. We’ll continually evolve our products, programs, and services to reflect the desires and needs of our community. And we believe that everyone deserves a seat at the table. That’s why the Co-op is open to all of our neighbors, not just member-owners.

Together, we make meaningful contributions to a thriving community and a sustainable planet through the power of food.

Our Ends

In order to accomplish our mission, we strive for specific ends that were adopted by our member-owner elected Board of Directors. 

Our ends at our tables:

  1. Our neighbors at all income levels have access to high-quality, healthful food. 
  2. People have access to honest information about the food available at our cooperative, about the cooperative model and about the food system in general.  
  3. Our employees are empowered, engaged, well-compensated and representative of our community. 

Our ends in our community:

  1. Our neighborhood profits from our robust and sustainable economic engine which provides jobs, goods and services to our member-owners and community. 
  2. Our cooperative is a vibrant community hub where all feel welcome.  
  3. Our community is committed to social and economic justice and preserving and nurturing the cultural heritages of our neighbors.                                                                                                                  
  4. There are active collaborative relationships between the cooperative and a wide variety of organizations in the community including other cooperatives to achieve common goals. 

Our ends for our planet:

  1. Farmers, producers and laborers are supported, paid and treated fairly.
  2. Our local food system is just and thriving. 
  3. The environment is protected and restored.

Our History

South Philly Food Co-op is ten years in the making!

  • April 2010 - Held 1st organized meeting
  • April 2011 - Incorporated as a cooperative
  • May 2011 - Launched member drive and elected first Board of Directors
  • April 2012 - Completed initial Feasibility Study
  • May 2012 - 250 member-owners; launched Real Estate Committee
  • April 2013 - 400 member-owners; launched site search; completed market study; prepared business plan
  • May 2014 - 600 member-owners
  • October 2016 - Signed lease for our store at 2031 S Juniper Street
  • March 2017 - Hired a campaign manager; launched a Member Loan campaign
  • March 2018 - Raised over $700,000 toward store opening; launched phase 1 of construction
  • October 2018 - 1,000 member-owners
  • March 2019 - 1,100 member-owners
  • April 2019 - Raised over $1.04 million toward store opening; hosted ground breaking celebration; hired general manager
  • October 2019 - 1,200 member-owners
  • November 2019 - Launched phase 2 of construction
  • December 2019 - Raised over $1.26 million toward store opening; began 2nd phase of construction
  • March 2020 - Covid-19 related governmental orders paused construction; a new capital campaign is launched to sustain our efforts and ensure our opening when construction can resume
  • May 2020 - 1,300 member-owners; construction resumes
  • October 2020 - Department Managers hired; Clerk hiring begins. 
  • December 2020 - Store opening; 1,400 member-owners and growing! 


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