I first learned about food co-ops while attending school in North Carolina. Company Shops Market opened during my last year at school, and it had a tremendous impact on the way that students in that small college town interacted with community members. It became a place where individuals from all backgrounds and experiences could connect with each other over what produce was in season, new recipes, and community events. After I returned to Chicago for graduate school, I missed that community hub. I discovered Chicago Market on a flyer the first summer I was back, and was ecstatic to discover the possibility of a co-op like the one I had known in North Carolina. I went home and immediately became an Owner of Chicago Market. For me, Chicago Market represents an opportunity to create the world I wish I lived in, where honesty and community were our highest values.
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