In Orange County Indiana the town of Paoli had just a few options for residents to do their shopping. Debbie Turner, a past steering committee member for the Lost River Market and Deli says while those places serve a purpose, the community felt they were under served. “We would often ask members of the community how often they would go over an hour away for a major grocery shopping excursion,” she says. The general answer was once a month. Turner says the question then became “How do we keep them buying here?” and “How do we keep their dollars local?”
Lost River Market and Deli is Paoli’s member-owned food cooperative dedicated to serving the needs of local growers, producers and consumers.
They operate on the seven cooperative principles, one of which is concern for the community. Turner says between the Orange County farmer’s markets and the local vendors that supply the store they generate over $250,000 every year that wasn’t in circulation before. She tells Brownfield it’s more than just reinvesting into the community, “it’s about the power that you have to make that change.”
In its fifth year, the Lost River Market and Deli in Paoli, Indiana is holding its own and continues to come together to support their local community.