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Green Tree Cooperative cuts the ribbon on new downtown location


Green Tree Cooperative Grocery staff and owners cut the ribbon to the new location located at 410 W Broadway the morning of Dec. 8.

Mitten-covered hands clapped as Sarah Christensen and Laura Coffee cut the big ribbon to officially open the new location for Green Tree Cooperative grocery.

The new storefront, located at 410. W Broadway is partially owned by over 3,000 members from the Mount Pleasant community. This allows for members of the community to choose how their store is run and what products it provides.

"We can be responsive to our community in a way conventional store generally can't be," Marketing Manager Laura Coffee said. "We have close relationships with our local farmers, we have a level of personal relationship and sense of community having been in this town since the 1970s, there have been people coming here for decades."

Produce lines the shelves of Green Tree Cooperative Grocery's new location at 410 W. Broadway on Dec. 8.

Since March, 1970 Green Tree has been serving produce from local farmers and suppliers. In recent years the store has begun to focus on offering vegan and gluten-free options to offer a better selection to those with dietary restrictions.

The Dec. 8 opening marks the first time Green Tree changed storefronts since 1977. 

"We had outgrown that space," Manager Sarah Christensen said. "We had more to offer the community what that space would allow we wanted to bring a larger produce department."

In the new store, Green Tree has quadrupled its floor space, doubled its staff and introduced more product selection for every department.

In addition Green Tree also added a fresh-made sushi bar, salad bar, a deli counter and more vegan and gluten-free options. 

Plans for the new Green Tree began in 2019 after years of planning and debate in the local government for the entirely new building. 

"People wanted us to do things we couldn't do in that old location, without more space that wasn't possible," Coffee said. "The challenging part was the move, we've been preparing for this for years we established training for new staff and new job descriptions."

Dispensers filled with candy, grains and more line the walls of Green Tree Cooperative Grocery's new location at 410 W Broadway on Dec. 8.

After two years of COVID-related delays to construction and moving, Green Tree staff and many of its members celebrated opening day.

"Our staff has worked so hard, I hope everybody takes the time to come down and check out what we've built together," Coffee said. "So many community members invested in this project, it's an example of what people can build if they work together."

Learn more about Green Tree Cooperative at their website. 

An old sign from past Green Tree cooperative grocery locations hangs in the new storefront at 410 W. Broadway on Dec. 8