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Site Visits
Together we’ll venture around Lincoln and beyond, exploring co-ops ranging from food to investment to producer co-ops! Some are burgeoning and some are in formation, but all offer interesting insight into their development process, challenges, and how they overcame them along them way. Take a sneak peak below:
  • Open Harvest, Lincoln, Nebraska – This co-op formed first as a buying club in 1971.  Open Harvest started in 1975.  The cooperative grocery store has a loyal customer base and continues to redefine as competition has increased.  With over 40 years of operations, local products making up 30% of their sales, and nearly 3000 members, they should have quite a story to tell!
  • Odell Community Market, Specialty Grocery Store, population 296 (61 miles from Lincoln).  Formed in 2016, the market is organized as an LLC.  Jim Crandall worked with the community.
  • Beatrice, Nebraska is currently exploring the formation of investment cooperative similar to St. Paul, Minnesota.  They are still early in  their process, but this stop offers the opportunity to speak with the community members working with NCDC and other to make it happen!
  • Lone Tree Foods, Lincoln, Nebraska — This producer-owned company formed in 2014.  With 18 producers and a web-based shopping portal, they make it easy to connect local farmers with customers in Lincoln.
Transit and Lodging
The meeting schedule has folks arriving on Tuesday, March 24, visiting co-ops all day on the 25th, and starting the day with a meeting from 9am-pm on the 26th (so evening flights can take you all home!).
Transit: The easiest way to get to Lincoln is to fly directly into Lincoln (LKN). This airport, however, is small and may not have direct or very cheap flight. You might also explore options at the Omaha airport (OMA), which is about an hour’s drive away. You would need to rent a car (perhaps with other members!) to get to Lincoln.
Lodging: Cynthia with NCDC has booked a room block with the Graduate Hotel in Lincoln with rates of $109/night. This hotel is in the heart of downtown, so post-tours/meeting you can bustle out with your co-op friends, catch up on life, and relax! We don’t have the room block link yet, but I will send it to you asap when it arrives.