Dear member –
As part of positioning our food business for the future, we are thrilled to share with you that Calgary Co-op has acquired Community Natural Foods’ retail business, effective November 4. The sale is part of the succession plan for Community Natural Foods’ owner and truly represents a coming together of two long-time community-focused retailers.
For Calgary Co-op’s food business to survive and thrive in the long term, we must work locally to increase the relevance of our unique offering of products and services to members’ lifestyles. We must also deliver steady financial performance for our member-owned co-operative. This acquisition is an important step in that direction.
We are very aware of our members’ growing interests in Natural Choice, Pharmacy, Home Health Care, organics, and Fresh Food. After due consideration, our Board enthusiastically supported the acquisition. They see change as positive, necessary and fundamental to ensure we act in the long-term interests of our members - keeping Calgary Co-op viable for years to come. Calgary Co-op members will also benefit from the annual net earnings of Community Natural Foods.
Calgary Co-op plans to operate Community Natural Foods three retail locations as part of an independent, wholly-owned subsidiary - with the same commitment to local and organic products and the current staff and management structure in place. There is no impact to current Calgary Co-op operations. Since the businesses will be run as separate entities, the loyalty and patronage programs in place at each business will not extend to the other. To be clear Calgary Co-op members will not receive patronage for any purchases they make at Community Natural Foods and Community Natural Foods’ discount programs will not extend to Calgary Co-op purchases.
For Community Natural Foods owner Garry Wilkes, it was his “personal wish to sell to a buyer who would steward the Community Natural Foods business and brand carefully and thoughtfully.” Both parties believe the Calgary Co-op team is the perfect fit as our two organizations share similar values and a deep connection to this community.
Community Natural Foods is a well-established organic and natural food retailer in Calgary, Alberta. Since its inception in 1977, Community Natural Foods has been dedicated to providing the public with unrefined and organic foods, natural nutritional supplements and sustainable lifestyle products.
With more than 100 years of combined community presence and a similar value set, both Calgary Co-op and Community Natural Foods are looking forward to learning from each other and taking the Community Natural Foods brand further as part of the Calgary Co-op family. As the market and demand for local, healthy and convenient products continues to grow, our team is committed to sourcing even more products directly from local producers and farmers. A key part of that will be maintaining and growing the relationships Community Natural Foods has built with its vendors over the years (many of them local).
We are really looking forward to connecting with the passion and expertise of our new Community Natural Foods colleagues. Longer term, we will evaluate where there are opportunities to add a little Calgary Co-op to Community Natural Foods and vice versa.
Please join us in celebrating our latest step in positioning our business for future success!
Patricia McLeod, Board Chair
Ken Keelor, CEO