Take a survey to help us choose the best form of our new hybrid food cooperative!
The Fertile Underground in 1000 Words!
Take a look inside our Grocery's 4 walls with a virtual store tour
Great Photo Gallery of the New Urban Farmers
We Got Recipes!
Fertile Underground began from a desire to improve our own health & spiritual life through local gardening, and grew into a community movement. Our own improved health inspired us to grow from our original Communal Garden into founding a Worker-Cooperative to provide a way of Right Livelihood for devoted members. We have now accomplished one full year of operating a small Grocery store in what was a "food desert" for 20 years before.
Local Food, Community Power, Alternative Funding, and Worker-Control are "catch-phrases" that describe our direction. Opening our business in the midst of the new conversation about Wall Street has furthered our understanding that communities are best served by gathering resource together directly to accomplish group objectives. This encourages us to continue seeking alternative methods of funding, which relieves us from charging the customer for debt & interest we may otherwise owe to a bank.
We hope our reputation of providing great local & natural foods at Fertile Underground Grocery will ensure your confidence in collectively fronting us the $12k it will take to get this truck going. Our new funding model, derived from the CSA, means you get back what you pay for in the form of food product. Your helpful act of letting us put that cash to use for a season allows us to go forward and provide the service in the future.
It's a simple concept, tied in with Slow Money, Local Economies, and Social Finance. The new magic of "investing" is not the allure of a large and hasty return, but rather the joy of seeing your community improve, in ways YOU decide, by "putting your money where your mouth is." Now, we don't want money anywhere near our mouth, that's why we'll be trading in your cash for the best local foods available!!
Every item you now see in the store has been paid for with profits we've made through providing our services. (we opened with virtually no start-up capital for inventory) You may imagine it's a big task to do a whole neighborhood's food shopping, especially when you need to pay for it up front! A hefty burst of cash would do wonders for our ability to keep popular items in stock, increase our variety, and continue providing the highest level of service.
The beauty is, our exchange of a 'gift certificate', called Crop Cash, means you can allow us to use that resource as long as you want, yet when you feel the desire to trade it back for vegetable, we are open more hours than your bank! With tastier options...