Women Seek Support for Bisman Food Co-Operative - KFYRTV.COM - Bismarck, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Women Seek Support for Bisman Food Co-Operative

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Farmer's markets, community supported agriculture groups, and other ways to find locally-grown foods are taking off in the Bismarck area. But there is a huge drawback to relying on them for weekly grocery shopping.

"There's kind of a "Where's Waldo" effect.  I go to one place for my grass-fed beef, one place for my eggs, another for honey.  A lot of people do that," says Heidi Demars, Bisman Food Co-Operative.

And that takes a lot of effort.

"I can't necessarily make it to the drop-off with the CSA. I can't even make it to the farmer's market," says Angie Oberg, Bisman Food Co-Operative.

So, the two, along with several others, brainstormed the idea of forming the Bisman Food Co-Operative.

A food co-op is basically a member-owned grocery store, where anyone can shop. The co-op would provide fresh, locally-sourced foods, along with specialty items, to those who want them. Unlike weekly farmer's markets, the store would be a permanent outlet for those who grow the foods.

"We're all really wanting to support the local growers.  That's what we want to focus on.  There's definitely a growing need," says Oberg.

The group has conducted surveys and held focus groups, and is now working to attract founding members, whose support will help get the store up and running.

"This isn't going to happen overnight.  I liken it to a garden, you plant the seeds, nurture that, take the time and watch it grow," says Demars.
Right now they're in the "planting"...or, planning, phase...searching for potential building locations, and searching for members, whose investment is necessary to making the store a reality.
For NBC North Dakota News, I'm Retha Colclasure.

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