Our co-op began as a food buying club in 1972 and opened a storefront of primarily bulk foods at 16th and P Streets in downtown Sacramento. In 1973, this buying club was incorporated as the Sacramento Natural Foods Cooperative, a Board of Directors was elected and the first paid employee was hired.
With continued growth, the Co-op needed a larger space and in 1974 the store was moved to 2996 Freeport Boulevard, where it stayed for the next 15 years. In 1989, the Co-op moved to 1900 Alhambra Boulevard at the corner of S Street in midtown Sacramento. In making this move, the Co-op doubled its physical size and its employee count. The Co-op also added a fish, meat and poultry counter and wine and beer to its offerings.
In recent years we have enhanced our gourmet food selection, including an excellent selection of specialty, artisan cheese and wine. Our Produce Department now sells organically grown fruits and vegetables exclusively. We have also added organic red meat to our product offerings.
In 2001, the Co-op's Board of Directors adopted a new strategic plan for the organization after many months of gathering input from over 2000 owners through focus groups, special owner meetings and an extensive survey.
2001 also marked the year that we first opened the doors to our Co-op Community Learning Center, adjacent to the Sacramento store and home to cooking classes, health seminars and a variety of owner meetings and special events. We are committed to serving our Co-op owners and supporting our community through consumer education, owner meetings and events, outreach activities and charitable programs and projects.
Today, the Co-op is over 39 years old with annual sales of over 26 million dollars, a community of owners that exceeds 12,000 and our Sacramento store that continues to thrive.
We've come a long way from our buying club days, but we stay true to our cooperative roots with the multitude of discussions on product selection, owner services, retail practices and ethical issues that take place every day in our business.