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Not Cool

If you’re one of the 1.3 million consumer-owners of a food co-op, you’ve probably come to expect high standards from your local store.

You might also be disappointed to learn that the National Co+op Grocers (NCG) has been actively promoting Ben & Jerry’s  ice cream to its member stores.

We expect chains like Whole Foods/Amazon, Costco and others to stock Ben & Jerry’s—but we hoped food-coops didn't. To find out, early on in our , we surveyed natural food stores and food co-ops.

Initially we found that 62 co-ops sold Ben and Jerry’s and 103 didn’t. (Eight stores didn’t respond to our survey). Since then, three of the 62 stores have dropped Ben & Jerry’s: Moscow Food Co-Op in Moscow, Idaho; New Pioneer Food Co-Op in Coralville, Iowa; and Ypsilanti Food Co-Op and River Street Bakery in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Frankly, we wondered why any co-op would sell ice cream known to be contaminated with Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller—when there are so many organic alternatives, most of which cost less than Ben & Jerry’s. Then we learned from one of our members about NCG promoting it! 

NCG provides business services to 147 food co-ops operating more than 200 stores in 37 states. On its website, NCG says it is a “dynamic and transparent organization with clear and meaningful ways for members to participate.” 

We can’t think of a more “meaningful way” for consumers to participate in their co-op than to ask that NCG stop promoting Ben & Jerry’s and instead urge all its member stores to #DumpBen&Jerrys. 

 

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