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Growing Together – Celebrating 10 Years In The Cowichan Valley

Cow-op is turning 10 this year, and we are celebrating a whirlwind decade of supporting local farmers and sustainable agriculture. The “Cowichan Valley Co-operative Marketplace” (CVCM) is a producer-owned cooperative that provides a platform for farmers and food producers to sell their goods directly to consumers. As we take a look back on our growth over the last 10 years, we want to extend our gratitude to the consumers and producers that have kept our local food scene alive and thriving through it all.

Celebrate with us! 2024 Harvest Table Fundraiser
Join us this October at Birds Eye Cove as we feast on the best of the year’s harvest. Together with member partners, Cow-op is curating an unforgettable evening and you’re invited! This extravagant evening of culinary delights will highlight the finest Cowichan Valley producers and products while supporting the long-term sustainability of our vital local food co-operative.

Where it all began
Cow-op.ca started selling its first products online in early 2015, and operated for several years from the back of Cowichan Green Community’s offices in downtown Duncan. By 2017, a second pick-up location in Victoria was established, and Cow-op’s membership had grown to 50+ members, including some of the most beloved Valley farms like Providence Farm, Lockwood Farm, and Boots n Roots Permaculture Farm.

Over the next two years, Cow-op rebranded, gained access to a refrigerated delivery van, expanded operations, published a popular cookbook, and said goodbye to our original Market Manager, Heather Kaye.

An unexpected twist
And then, in 2020, the pandemic hit.

By April 2020, farmer’s markets and grocery stores were shut down. During the pandemic, Cow-op’s online ordering became an essential service and a lifeline for farmers, and we quickly pivoted to offering home delivery service. Two more pick up locations were added, we rallied an army of volunteers and staff to help keep local food moving every week.


Where are we now?
Today, Cow-op has become a cherished asset in the community. Things may have calmed down after the pandemic, but we haven’t stopped doing what we do best: connecting local consumers directly to local producers. Each week we provide a growing selection of the freshest local food, direct from over 80 Cowichan Valley farmers and food producers to customers.

Your Support Matters
Did you know that 5 major Big Box retailers hold nearly 76% of the Canadian grocery market share? As a non-profit cooperative we are proud to offer an alternative to shopping at chain grocery stores and empower consumers to make choices that align with their values.

We are all feeling the pinch of inflation and it’s more important now than ever to keep supporting the small businesses and farmers within our community. Ordering weekly groceries from Cow-op.ca not only keeps your dollars local, but also gives you access to the freshest and highest quality products around.

Join Us
Help us celebrate our milestone anniversary, and support local food security for the decade to come, by purchasing tickets to the Harvest Feast Fundraising Gala, to be held in October 2024 at Bird’s Eye Cove.
To reserve a spot, and for more information, contact laura@cow-op.ca