There’s a new food program on the shelves at Weavers Way Co-op to benefit low-income families and individuals.
On Jan. 2, the Northwest Philly-based food cooperative launched its Food For All program, a food access initiative that will allow the higher-quality produce and products sold at Weavers Way markets to be more accessible and affordable.
“We believe it is important that everybody have better access to everything in their shopping basket,” said Rebecca Torpie, the Weavers Way marketing director.
Food For All is an application-based program that offers Weavers Way members who are eligible for SNAP, WIC, TANF or Medicaid an automatic 10 percent off nearly all items.
The idea came forth through the Weavers Way Food Justice Committee.
According to Bettina de Caumette, the cooperative’s outreach coordinator, the Food Justice Committee asked themselves: “Is there more Weavers Way can be doing to help alleviate hunger, increase access to healthy foods and promote better, more sustainable and fair food systems in our city?”
They began researching co-ops across the country and found that over a dozen were already operating low-income discount programs. They presented their findings to the management team who then developed the framework for the Food For All Program at Weavers Way.
Currently the program is for members only. Those eligible for Food For All are encouraged to also become working members of the co-op, allowing them an additional 5 percent discount.
Working members are required to work six hours a year per household member.
“The communities of Northwest Philadelphia, who we serve, are exceptionally diverse, representing a wide range of income brackets and cultural backgrounds. As a consumer cooperative, we believe that it is part of our mission to serve the whole community in ways that benefit everyone,” said de Caumette. “The Food for All program opens doors, and helps level the field when it comes to accessing responsibly produced, truly nourishing foods.”
De Caumette shared that since going live, the response to the Food For All program has been overwhelming positive, and that the co-op received immediate inquiries.
To apply for Food For All, schedule a meeting with Membership Coordinator Kirsten Bernal by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (215) 843-2350, ext. 119. Prior to meeting you must fill out the application, available on the Weavers Way website, and bring it to the meeting along with your SNAP or WIC documentation.
Food For All applications and transactions will be handled confidentially.