Screening of Food For Change

The Belfast Cooperative will host a free screening of “Food For Change: The Story of Cooperation in America” at the Colonial Theatre on Sunday, October 23. The screening will kick off at 4 p.m. with a showing of “Rooted in Community: A Belfast Co-op Short Film.”

“Food For Change” is a documentary tracing the origins and enduring strength of co-ops as a force for economic and social development. Exploring the myriad ways that co-ops reinforce local food systems, food security and organic farming practices, the film offers a historical perspective of cooperative evolution in the United States. Thoroughly researched and assembled over the course of seven years, “Food For Change” is a timely source of context and inspiration at our current threshold of challenge and growth. The preceding film, “Rooted in Community,” is a short film chronicling the history of how our own Belfast Co-op built its own place in this community. Member-owners will be sure to recognize some familiar faces in the interviews with founding members!

We were thrilled to have Cooperative Development Institute (CDI) and Crown O’ Maine Organic Cooperative (CODOC) sponsor this event so we could offer it free to the community. These organizations take unique but complimentary approaches to supporting local and cooperative economies.

The former, CDI, facilitates cooperative business development and networking in the Northeast United States. According to their website, CDI supports “people having economic control through worker, producer, harvester, consumer, and multi-stakeholder cooperatives. We work with cooperatives in all aspects of the food system: farming, fishing, processing, value-added, purchasing, food hubs, distribution, marketing, food co-ops, buying clubs, restaurants, food service management, equipment, labor,  land access, and more…” Through programs such as Cooperative Food Systems, CDI has spent over two decades helping Maine food producers and consumers collaborate “at all levels of the food supply chain from farm and sea to table.” For more information, visit cdi.coop.

Crown O’ Maine Organic Cooperative is a hub for distributing fresh Maine produce to retail stores, restaurants and buying clubs statewide. Since 1995, COMOC has been dedicated to weaving many strands of local agriculture into a durable network of growth and resilience. According to their website, “We believe that Maine is a place where communities can and do work together. Our vision looks to ways we can strengthen and improve our inter-connectedness… Our goal now is to improve access to locally grown and produced products by providing a system that enables more participation in this great relationship.” For more information, visit http://www.crownofmainecoop.com.

We hope you join us for these films at the historic Colonial Theatre in downtown Belfast to revel in the spirit of National Co-op Month. The theme for 2016 is “Cooperatives Build,” honoring the potential of co-ops of all kinds to forge strong foundations and foster mindful change. We’re celebrating all month long, building connections to our community with events like these film screenings, a free cheese making class, an Octobeer celebration with Peak Organic Beer Co. and chances to win $25 gift certificates to one of four coastal Maine co-ops. It is only through the investment and dedication of our member-owners that we are able to thrive – thank you, as ever, for your support!

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