Mercedes Zel-Pappas started this nonprofit cooperative six years ago for low- and middle-income families, who are often forced to buy cheap, processed foods because they are unable to afford healthier produce and meats. "I felt there should be some kind of healthy option for them," she said.
What’s available » All the fruits and vegetables at the co-op are organic, purchased through the same suppliers who sell to Whole Foods and Sprouts, Zel-Pappas said. Eggs, milk, poultry and grass-fed beef that are either organic or locally-produced are available, along with yogurt, tea, honey, granola, peanut butter, sauces, chips, crackers, tortillas, dried food, olive oil, coconut oil and hummus. The store also offers products for those who eat vegan or gluten-free diets.
Shop » Just like a regular grocery store, the public can shop at the co-op during regular business hours (See below). Customers who want to ensure that they get organic produce every week can pre-order either online or in person a special produce baskets, priced between $12 and $26.50. The largest basket contains about a week’s worth of fruits and vegetables. Baskets can be picked up during regular business hours.
Giving back » After paying rent and utilities — there’s no payroll — all the profits are donated to a different Utah charity each month. The co-op also offers people with special needs job training through volunteering.