National Co+operative Grocers, the preeminent cooperative organization in the country, of which CNFC is a member, recently announced that their carbon offset program now supports 837,000 trees in an at-risk region of the Peruvian rainforest. As a further contribution to the area’s environment and economy, the program will now support the reintroduction of beekeeping into the area.
The Co+op Forest initiative is a two year old program that has been offsetting the travel and utility emissions of the NCG and its main offices by partnering with Peruvian farmer cooperatives to plant and maintain native trees in the Amazon Rainforest. The Co+op Forest is part of a larger system of sustainable forestry and agriculture in the region which results in organic, fair-trade products being produced, some of which wind up being sold in Co-ops like the one here in Chico!
In 2015, the Co+op Forest expanded to include the Alto Shamboyacu community, many of whom are coffee and chocolate producers in the Oro Verde farmer cooperative. This year’s contribution includes compensation to plant and maintain 1,458 native trees among the cash crops grown by the cooperative. In addition, the NCG’s funds will aid in the revitalizing of the area’s beekeeping industry. Pollinators will thrive, indigenous plants will grow, and a local industry will prosper.
The Chico Natural Foods Co-op is proud to be a member of the NCG. In addition to everyday benefits in product purchasing, the NCG is an exemplary model of responsible business behavior. The high ethical standards of the NCG’s member Co-ops have built upwards to create an organization that serves as an inspiration to others around the country and, indeed, around the world.