Israel’s First Food Co-Op Chain to Launch Tomorrow

Bell-pepper-fresh-vegetablesWith generous support from UJA-Federation NY, the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, and other donors, a new model of food co-ops operated as social ventures and managed by their customers will open in Sderot tomorrow.

The chain, Tzarchaniyat Ha’Ir, will be located throughout Israel’s socioeconomic periphery and will offer customers groceries for significantly less than market prices. All earnings from sales will be invested in strengthening the local communities, as well as in further developing the venture. This is the first time that such a model is being launched in Israel, combining a response to the local cost of living and a partnership with local residents.

A second branch is set to open this month in Arad. The goal is to launch ten new branches every year, and forty in total over the first few years. Tens of millions of shekelim will be invested.

Partners in the venture include The Jewish Agency and Israel Venture Network.