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Calgary Co-op buys Community Natural Foods

Calgary Co-op grocery stores are staking their claim in locally-grown food with the acquisition of Calgary’s Community Natural Foods.

The announcement was made Monday and comes just nine weeks after Calgary Co-op severed ties with Federated Co-operatives Ltd. (FCL) for their food distribution and joined up with the Alberta-based distribution arm of Save On Foods. Two weeks ago, the chain announce it would be removing plastic shopping bags in 2020.

“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,” said Ken Keelor, CEO, Calgary Co-op.

In their August release, Calgary Co-op said they would continue to work with local growers and producers so there was a greater selection of local goods.

They laid out a three-step plan for the Spring of 2020 to include more local, healthy and convenient items, improve the Calgary Co-op flyer and bring in more brands exclusive to their customers.

Community Natural Foods in Calgary for 42 years

Community Natural Foods, which operates three Calgary stores, opened in 1977 with the purpose of providing Calgarians with organic food options.

“I really want to thank Calgarians for their loyalty and the Community Natural Foods team for their passion to provide our city with natural and organic food,” said Garry Wilkes, Community Natural Foods founder and owner.

“It’s been an amazing 42-year journey and it was my personal wish to sell to a buyer who would steward the Community Natural Foods business and brand carefully and thoughtfully. I believe the Calgary Co-op team is the perfect fit as our two organizations share similar values and a deep connection to this community,” he added.

Calgary Co-op intends to operate Community Natural Foods as an independent, wholly-owned subsidiary. They also said they would continue with the Community Natural Foods vendor relationships, and keep the current staff and management structure in place.