BOSTON’S ONLY COMMUNITY & WORKER-OWNED GROCERY STORE
Brings groceries, cafe, bulk items, and community space to Dorchester
Dorchester Food Co-op (DFC) has officially opened its doors at 195 Bowdoin Street. The only member-owned grocery store in Boston, Dorchester Food Co-op is a unique institution. It is the result of a community-led effort, over 10 years in the making, so the opening is significant within the neighborhood and beyond. The mission of Dorchester Food Co-op is to challenge the traditional food system by building a community and worker-owned asset that nourishes, employs, and reinvests in the local community.
Dorchester Food Co-op is a community and worker-owned co-op dedicated to providing fresh, healthy, and sustainable food options to the community with a commitment to supporting local farmers and producers, reducing food waste, and advancing economic opportunity through neighborhood engagement.
“Years of hard work and dedication have gone into bringing this co-op into reality,” said John Santos, General Manager of Dorchester Food Co-op. “We are glad to offer this new shopping experience by and for the Dorchester community– and the larger Boston area community– that provides a connection between shoppers and the local food system.”
Located on the corner of Bowdoin Street and Topliff Street, Dorchester Food Co-op will offer produce, pantry staples, household goods, and prepared foods, as well as a cafe area with a coffee and juice bar and a prepared foods and grab ‘n go section where shoppers can enjoy a prepared meal after shopping. As part of the Co-op’s commitment to community, a microwave will be available for those who may want to cook items purchased with SNAP, who would otherwise not have access to a hot meal.
The selection of products will be community-oriented and features local, small-batch, high-quality products wherever possible, as well as standard grocery favorites, and culturally relevant items hard to find elsewhere. With a strong emphasis on healthy options, no products will have high fructose corn syrup on the ingredient list. An exciting draw will be the bulk department featuring dry goods like rice, beans, and spices, as well as household cleaning and bath and body products, that can be portioned out according to preference and brought home in reusable containers. All bulk liquids will be high quality and unscented, with the option to add in scented oils as desired.
The beautiful, sustainable design continues outside the doors, where there will be outdoor seating, community space, and additional shopping opportunities, with fresh seafood, produce, and more on display along the exterior. There will also be a living wall from which passers-by can pick their own samples of complimentary fresh vegetables or culinary herbs. There is an adjoining community room that fits 49 people and can be rented for gatherings and events.
Dorchester Food Co-op is a diverse, inclusive community that serves and reflects the wide variety of cultural, racial, and socio-economic groups that make up its neighborhood. As such, job opportunities are available for young people, individuals with disabilities, returning citizens, as well as positions for elders in the community. Every staff member will also be an owner of the co-op, so it is truly worker-owned.
Dorchester Food Co-op will be a grocery store for all. Non-members are as welcome as members to shop and participate in everything the co-op has to offer. All are welcome to become member-owners, regardless of residence in Dorchester or Boston at all. Membership can be obtained for a one-time member fee of $100, which can be made in installments or be off-set by the Solidarity Fund, which can cover part of the balance in order to ensure accessibility. More membership info can be found here.
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