The Gulf Islands Food Co-op (GIFC) is a non-profit co-operative, focused on supporting the food producers, food groups, eaters, and local food resilience of the islands of Pender, Mayne, Galiano, and Saturna (see attached Summary).
By offering free or low-cost services to island food producers of all types and sizes (commercial and non-commercial, non-Indigenous and Indigenous, value-added, etc.), GIFC aims to bolster their food production capacity, and to encourage our community members to be local food consumers.
JUNE, 2019: We are grateful to announce that the GIFC now has NEW FUNDING from Vancity, the Community Works Fund, and the CRD to support the following projects:
(1) CO-OP TABLES for joint selling at the island Saturday Markets (for producers a bit too small to have their own table each week – see more info below);
(2) JOINT BULK BUYING for less expensive purchasing of other key things needed by food producers, e.g. see first Bird Netting Bulk Buy
(3) CO-OP ECOMMERCE for producers who might want to try selling online through the Co-op website;
(4) EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS to follow up on last year’s Soil Building and Indigenous Foods workshops;
(5) additional INDIGENOUS OUTREACH and support from Co-op programs;
(6) FREE HAULING of compostable materials for soil building (e.g. manure, plant and food waste – coming in 2020);
If you are interested or have questions about any of the above projects (especially the Co-op Tables starting first!), we invite you to contact new Co-op Coordinator Nancy Klein at firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-629-0039.
MORE ABOUT CO-OP TABLES: For our first new project, GIFC is funding co-operative sales tables for the joint selling of produce at each island’s weekly Saturday Market. The GIFC co-operative sales table project will also showcase the variety of local food available throughout the season, while providing information about upcoming GIFC programming. We hope that small scale farmers and backyard growers alike will decide that even contributing a few heads of cabbage or a few bunches of carrots weekly or once in a while is both an effort worthy of their time and valuable in the context of local food security. For each island, GIFC is ideally looking for paid persons to organize the weekly growers contributing to the table, then to set up/ take down the Market table, to sit for the length of the weekly market to directly sell the produce, and to divvy up the cash and leftover produce at the end of the day to the particular growers.
The Co-op also offers a GULF ISLANDS FOOD REGISTRY of amazing island food producers. Anyone can also register on the website to become a Co-op Member, and then you will be sure to hear about future offerings, and also help us grow in our services to you!
Nancy Klein, Co-op Coordinator, email@example.com