October news at the Co-op

October is typically Co-op month, to highlight how differently cooperatives do business. But instead of talking about the 7 Cooperative Principles, or the ownership benefits of being part of the Co-op, we only need to look at the past four weeks to see what being a cooperative really means.

As part of the co-op family, you've helped the entire community immensely. 

You are stepping up for the seven Co-op employees who lost their homes by donating to GoFundMe accounts. As part of our staff, they each received a separate $1,000 relief check from the Co-op, along with gift certificates for food and temporary housing arrangements. 

You are helping the most impacted directly. With over $75,000 in donations to the Ashland Food Co-op Almeda/Glendower Fire Relief Fund, nearly half has already been distributed to trusted recovery organizations on the ground: MRG Foundation, Unete, SO Education Service DistrictPhoenix / Talent Schools, Family Nurturing Center, La Clinica, and Maslow Project. And as the rebuilding mission comes into focus, the Co-op will be dedicating your donations help towards new housing efforts. 

Out of the 7 Cooperative Principles, we pride ourselves particularly on "concern for the community" at the Co-op. A healthy community leads to a healthy co-op, and vice versa. Thanks for being a part of that.

There's another cooperative principle, "Cooperation among cooperatives," that has also stood out in the past month. Everyone is looking out for one another, cooperating on fundraising and relief efforts. For example, our friends at Coos Head Co-op in Coos Bay are donating round-up donations from their store to Ashland Food Co-op's fund as well as Medford Food Co-op. Additionally, the Co-op has joined Rogue Food Unites to make sure that with everything else going on, food and good nutrition isn't another worry for displaced families. 

On top of all this, a huge list of the vendors and producers from the region and nation have asked, "How can we help?" And they've helped in a big way. Read more here about the many donations we've received and distributed to the community - these businesses have definitely earned a huge thanks.

The Co-op will continue to raise relief funds through October as part of the Change for Good register round-up program, and we'll keep everyone updated on social media and our weekly sales flyer email about relief fund recipients and other initiatives. We'll also have some other ways you can help out this month, so stay tuned - and thanks for being part of this caring community. 

More Co-op News

A Visit with Rolling Hills

Visit Rolling Hills Farm and learn more about owner Dave Belzberg, who the Ashland Food Co-op is so honored to partner with for more than thirty five years.

A Visit with Magnolia Farms




Visit Magnolia Farms and learn more about owner Elissa Thau, who the Ashland Food Co-op is so honored to partner with for more than twenty years.

A Visit with Emerald Hills

Visit the Emerald Hills Ranch and learn more about this fourth generation ranching family that the Ashland Food Co-op is so proud to partner with for more than twenty years.

A Conversation with Katie Falkenberg, Photographer and Filmmaker

Katie Falkenberg's photography and filmmaking has taken her all over the world, and lucky for us - she's been calling the Rogue Valley home for a couple years now. Exquisitely and harmoniously capturing the world around her, she is documenting not only through the lens but also through her peaceful and loving spirit. Katie reached out to us in hopes of collaborating after falling in love with the co-op soon after moving here.

January Change for Good Recipient: Rogue Valley Mentoring

Since 2005, Rogue Valley Mentoring (formerly the Rose Circle Mentoring Network) has trained over 500 adults who have mentored over 2,000 youth in our valley; letting young people know that they are not alone. A caring and compassionate ear shows them that they matter, and they they are experts of their own experience.

Rogue Valley Mentoring Circle

Coronavirus Preparedness at the Co-op

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The Ashland Food Co-op acknowledges and shares our community’s concerns about protecting against the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). The safety and health of staff and customers is a top priority for the Co-op.

Shopping Safely & Efficiently


As coronavirus cases increase in Jackson County, the Co-op is taking extra precautions to protect shoppers and employees. 

To ensure social distancing in the store, the number of persons allowed in the store at once has been reduced to 50% capacity. Understandably, this may lead to a short wait outside of the store, but please be assured the line moves quickly.

In order to keep the wait as short as possible, here are a few steps you can take to help out:

10 Ways to Shine Your Light in Dark Times

By Allan Weisbard L.C.S.W.


Since 1963, autumn has been a difficult time for me. Two months shy of my 13th birthday I lost my younger brother to cancer, then shortly afterwards, President Kennedy was assassinated.

Masks Required for All In-Store Shoppers

To protect the health of Co-op staff and shoppers, all shoppers and other visitors on Ashland Food Co-op property must wear face coverings over mouth and nose except when dining in an approved area. As of November 11, 2020, face shields will not be permitted unless worn with a mask. 

From the Board: Co-ops Look in the Mirror

By Annie Hoy, Board Secretary and Chair of Owner Engagement Committee

Food Co-ops around the nation proudly display signage saying EVERYONE WELCOME. Or they use the slogan, “Anyone can shop. Anyone can join.” But are food co-ops, and other cooperative businesses, walking the walk? 

November/December GM Update: Overcoming Challenges

It’s probably already cliche to say “it’s been one heck of a year.” There have been challenges a-plenty for all of us, whether we’re working or shopping at the Co-op - but I’m so proud of how all of us have persevered.