2018 Littleton Food Coop Annual Report

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Littleton Food Coop

Annual Report 2018

From the General Manager’s Desk Here at the Coop, we’ve always considered sustainability to be a key component of our mission. From our Green Team to our freshly revamped cafe recycling program — we’ve been hard at work on upping our sustainable efforts. Now we’re taking it a step further, we’ll be phasing out single-use plastics at checkout.

Read More Inside ↪

We’ve Updated our Mission & Vision Statements Our Vision: Our Coop is a catalyst for cultivating a vibrant community and regional economy. Our Mission: To provide a community-owned marketplace that supports local and promotes healthy choices for people and planet.

Littleton Food Coop 43 Bethlehem Road, Littleton, New Hamsphire.

Open Daily (603) 444 • 2800 online @ littletoncoop.com

Littleton Food Coop’s Annual Report 2018 This report is a collaborative eff ort by the Staff and Management of the Littleton Food Coop. Designed and deployed by Jessy Smith & Annie Stuart. Support and contributions from the aforementioned, Ed King, Minnie Cushing, Chris Whiton, Melissa Bridges, Becky Colpitts, the Board of Directors, as well as the staff and member-volunteers of the Littleton Food Coop.

Who We Are Our first ribbon-cutting in May of 2009 marked the culmination of three years of discussion, planning, and incredible collaboration — propelled by the support of passionate community members and local organizations ready for change

in the local grocery market landscape. We first opened our doors with 40 staff on-board and around 1500 members. Following years of sustained growth and success, we cut the ribbon on our award-winning expansion on May 19, 2017. Today we employ nearly 100 locals, we have over 6,800

members, and we (including you!) raised over $39,000 for our community partners in 2018. Littleton Food Coop continues to grow and evolve alongside our booming Littleton Area.

Single Use Plastics Ed King, General Manager.

We’ve always considered sustainability to be a key component of our mission here at the Littleton Food Coop. We have an active employee “Green Team” committee that makes recommendations to Management on ways we can: (1) Improve, expand, or rethink our recycling programs, (2) Find and deploy more sustainable, compostable, or environmentally friendly packaging options for the products we make here in the store, and (3) Find ways for the Coop to reduce or offset our overall carbon footprint. Another initiative gaining traction (both locally and nationally) is the “Ban the Bag”


movement. In fact, the New Hampshire legislature is currently debating just such a measure for 2020. We’ve always encouraged the use of reusable bags — but have also always had a plastic option available for our customers as well. Effective on June first, however, we will no longer have single-use plastic bags available at the register.



kW•H/ft 2


2015 2016 2017 2018

36.8 37.0 22.8 21.1

+1%* -39% -43%

* 2016 Includes Electric Use During Expansion. Percentages are vs the 2015 pre-expansion baseline figure.

Propane Use Year

Gal/ft 2

2015 2016 2017 2018

1.54 1.19 0.86 0.74


This task has proven to be daunting as many of the alternatives are more expensive, or don’t meet our quality

Local Impact

-23% -44% -52%

Change is always a challenge, but we feel as an organization that the time for this change is now.

We invested $2,422,514 in purchasing local products last year.

199 Active Local Vendors. 24% of our Inventory was grown, cooked, or made locally.

That’s 27.5% of our total wholesale purchases in 2018.

You raised $39,940 for our partners of the month in 2018.

Recycling How much is 75,694 Lbs of CO2? About the same as driving a combustion-driven sedan for 56 days nonstop, running a 42” LCD Television for 23.5 years, powering an averagesized home for 2.65 years, or burning twelve tons of coal.

2018 Solar Generation by Month (in MWh) Jan Feb Mar Apr

Percentages are vs the 2015 pre-expansion baseline figure.

We have one-hundred and five solar panels between the roof of the expanded building and the pavilion. Even though they’ve only been running for the last few years, we’ve already saved 75,694 Lbs (37.9 Tons) of CO2 emissions.

I understand that there are divergent views on this topic. Many of our customers wanted us to do this years ago, while others are perfectly happy the way things are.

With the help of our Green Team, we’re looking at all of our plastic usage in the store and are working, slowly but surely, to transition to more sustainable alternatives.

Meet Becky!

6857 Total Members. 523 New Members in 2018, with 43% of them (224) joining as full member owners. Our members cumulatively saved $62,356 via member discounts in 2018.


We do know that paper bags are not the answer — even if they are made from recycled paper. Manufacturing paper bags requires more energy and water resources than plastic. The real answer is to promote sustainable and reusable bags whenever possible.

Instead, we will have recycled paper bags which customers can purchase for a dime each. We’ll also have for purchase a large variety of reusable bags at affordable prices to encourage their use. We decided to take this initiative before we are

We also hired a dedicated full-time Community Outreach coordinator in 2018. Becky Colpitts comes to us with experience @ the late St. J Food Coop, and the University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension. You can reach Becky by calling our administrative offices, or by electronic mail — bcolpitts@littletoncoop.org

standards — and we’re not willing to compromise on food safety or quality. Please bear with us as we experiment with different options throughout the store. We’re looking forward to your feedback to help us all through this process.

legally required to because it fits our mission and it is the right thing to do.

May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec 0






2018 saw the formation of our Green Team committee, and the expansion of many of our existing recycling programs as well as the addition of some new ones. We continue help our membership recycle their used plastics bags, even as we plan to discontinue them here in the store. We introduced a program to collect used cork to ship off for up-cycling. We also began collecting paper and pulped Egg Cartons for our friends at Meadowstone Farm to reuse.


We currently have 96 Employees. 52% of them work with us full-time, and are eligible for health insurance coverage through the Coop. 100% of our Employees earn a living wage or greater. 1 Our employees, cumulatively, saved roughly $68,900 with their employee discounts in 2018. We’ve also added a few new permanent job positions including the Community Outreach Coordinator and the Merchandising Manager Positions. Littleton Food Coop paid out roughly $1.9 Million in taxable wages last year.

Living Wages Year

% of Staff

2016 2017 2018

48% 88% 100%

GSMM Granite State Market Match doubles SNAP/EBT benefits for fruits and vegetables at participating farmers markets (and some select marketplaces), helping households purchase more fresh fruits and vegetables and support local farmers. Granite State Market Match is an incentive that is earned for SNAP purchases. It can be used to purchase fruits, vegetables, herbs, seeds, and seedlings. The Granite State Market Match program allows the 106,000 New Hampshire residents receiving SNAP to turn $10 into $20 in healthy, locally-grown produce every time they visit the farmers market. The New Hampshire Nutrition Incentive Network is comprised of six regional non-profits and farmers market organizations that have united to make healthy food accessible to SNAP customers throughout the state. Led by the New Hampshire Food Bank, with support from Wholesome Wave the NH Nutrition Incentive Network now offers SNAP and Granite State Market Match at more than 50 locations Including Littleton Food Coop.

Healthy Food Access Littleton Food Coop’s Healthy Food Access Program increases community access to healthy, local, and organic food. The Healthy Food Access Program (HFA) is a discount program designed to make high-quality healthy food more accessible for everyone, regardless of income. Littleton Food Coop members who meet certain supplemental income requirements are likely eligible. Qualified non-member applicants may be eligible for additional financial assistance in order to become a partial LFC member. Interested in learning more about what the coop does to give back to our community? Want to apply to join the Healthy Food Access Program? Stop by the Customer Service Desk for more information.

In 2018, we had 96 HFA recipients — with 26 being new recipients and/or new Littleton Food Coop members this past year. In total, cumulatively, our HFA members saved roughly $15,800 on their groceries last year at the Littleton Food Coop.

Events & Edu. Year

2016 2017 2018

# of Events

13 14 39!

Local Producers Year

2016 2017 2018

Total # @ LFC

95 143 199


Mr. Glass

Our Level II Electric Vehicle Charging Stations have offset roughly 11,000 Gallons of Gasoline since they were activated, nearly two years ago now. That’s enough gasoline to fill a full-sized tanker-truck!

We’ve saved over 70,000 (roughly 93,000 cubic feet of material) bottles from landfills since opening in 2009, thanks in part to you folks for being so fastidious about returning your bottles, as well as our vendors’ glass bottling and deposit programs.

1. Living Wage Information is based on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) living wage figures. For full figures and technical documentation, see MIT’s website: livingwage.mit.edu/counties/33009

Three Year Financial Highlights

The Whole Ten Years We wouldn’t be here without the hard work and dedication from the folks that have been with us since we got this whole thing started. Be sure to thank the following individuals for their enduring commitment to the Littleton Food Coop. From Top Left: Juleen L, John O, Jimmy N, Alex R, Mike V (in Balloon), Kara W, Brian L, Ed King, Minnie Cushing, Linda B, and Tammie N.

In Memory of our Friend & Colleague, Tom Southworth.

Our Tenth Anniversary Ed King, General Manager.

Celebrating a tenth Anniversary allows you to do a few things — look back at how far you’ve come, thank the people who’ve helped along the way, and to look toward the future. The founding Board Members of the Littleton Food Coop have the satisfaction of knowing that they built something from nothing. It all actually started in 2006 when Jeff Wheeler, Mike Claflin, and Mark Second — among others, too many to list here — decided to take matters into their own hands and launched the effort to organize our community market. The first community meeting drew a crowd of over 300 people — proof that the idea had traction. With the expert guidance of Terry Appleby (General Manager of the Hanover Consumer Cooperative Society from 1992 until his retirement in 2016) as well as our first General Manager, Bob Hayes, the three-year journey toward our initial 2009 opening was underway. Most folks have no idea how hard it is to open a consumer cooperative — thousands of hours went into developing governance, bylaws, business plans, site selection,

financing, architectural planning & considerations, and the hiring process. More than a thousand members joined before the store even existed; and more than a hundred members lent money to support the project financially — with the rest of the financing supported by several local banks. The Littleton Food Coop was truly a community market from the very beginning. A strong core of dedicated staff helped assure that we would ultimately succeed. The store launched in the wake of the 2008 recession, and once we opened we experienced the challenges of getting started in the middle of hard economic times. We had to overcome some serious hurdles for the Littleton Food Coop to become the store the community wanted it to be. Our first five years saw dramatic growth — adding employees, new products, thousands of members — we had made it through the recession to become a profitable business. With consistent growth, eventually came the realization that we

needed to grow. Once again, our board, membership, and employees invested in the future of our Community Market by planning and finishing our award-winning 2017 expansion. The expanded Littleton Food Coop has us in a good position to continue our growth well into the future. Today, our Cooperative is in a solid financial position that will allow us to pay out a patronage rebate — the second since the store’s opened. We’re paying 100% of our nearly one-hundred employees a fair living wage — with more than half of us eligible for healthcare benefits. Our robust Healthy Food Access Program increases food security in Littleton and the surrounding communities. We’ve put millions back into the local economy by purchasing local products from farmers and producers in our community. We support dozens of local nonprofit organizations and causes through our Partner of the Month Program, by direct donations, volunteering our time, and in other ways. None of this would be possible without the hard work from dozens of volunteer Board Members past and present, scores of great

employees, hundreds of awesome local producers — and, of course — the thousands of member-owners like you that support the Littleton Food Coop. We can all be proud of what our Coop has accomplished in just ten short years. We’re a pillar of the community — ingrained into the culutral fabric of the North Country. Our future is bright as we explore ways to continue to grow our impact through education and parterships. Even now, we’re working with local start-up Coops in Berlin and St. Johnsbury as they try to replicate the success we’ve seen here at the Littleton Food Coop. It’s important that we pay forward all of the assistance we received over the years. As we celebrate our accomplishments thus far, we can only hope that the next ten years brings more of the same.