We want to express our sincerest thanks to all our owners who have participated in the fall capital campaign, and especially wish to thank all our volunteers who made the campaign possible. Silverton Food Co-op volunteers made hundreds of phone calls, texts and emails and reached 40% of our eligible owners. We completed loan agreements with 57 lenders and deposited $188,000 in the escrow account. An additional 34 owners made gifts totaling $7,340.
The Board of Directors has carefully evaluated this fall's effort to contact the over 600 Co-op owners who are eligible to make a loan. We have learned from this evaluation that we have poor prospects in 2021 to secure $800,000 from our owners, in accordance with our $1.6 million business plan to open the store.
A few years ago, the idea of a community-owned grocery store in Silverton was birthed around a dining room table. Around this table were foodies, farmers, and engaged citizens with a shared dream of creating a place where community members could access healthy, local food every day of the week. To make that dream possible, we have been following the development model for startup food co-ops created by Food Co-op Initiative (FCI) since 2017. In the last 10 years many communities have successfully used the FCI model to open a food co-op store. While the Board believes this development model is sound and may still work for Silverton in the future, it is unlikely to be a feasible model in the near term.
In January, with the input of investors and owners like you, including our business-owners, we will make some important decisions, including whether to continue fundraising during the remainder of the offering period, which ends on September 30, 2021, or terminate the offering before its expiration date. We’ll also ask for your ideas as to whether the Co-op should explore alternatives to the FCI model and other projects and activities that will further our mission to support local farmers and producers and bring fresh, real food to our members year round. Please mark your calendars for the following important dates:
January 7, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. - Virtual discussion with
Silverton Food Co-op investors
January 21, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. - Virtual discussion with
all Silverton Food Co-op owners
We look forward to hearing from you and we welcome your participation in deciding the future of our Silverton Food Co-op. Please watch your inbox for forthcoming invitations to these January meetings!