In the Winter Holidays 2015 Issue of Edible East Bay, contributing editor Sarah Henry reports on two farms forging economic ties and creating community with local independent restaurants in her story “A Tale of Two West Oakland Farms.”
In the article, there’s a misidentification of Mandela Foods Cooperative, the West Oakland grocery store opened since 2009. Mandela MarketPlace is the non-profit that incubates Mandela Foods Cooperative, along with other economic development and food access initiatives. The magazine regrets the error.
The piece also mentions the lack of a grocery store in the area, a reference to the absence of a large supermarket serving the neighborhood. For the record: Mandela Foods Cooperative, though small, is a full-service worker-and-community-owned store which includes the food business, Zella’s Soulful Kitchen, profiled in our pages in the Summer 2014 issue. Now with a 6-year track record under its belt, Mandela Foods Cooperative is looking for space to grow and is planning to propose an expansion of the current space, fulfilling the initial intention of a larger footprint, locally owned store with added space for local vendors to produce and sell their products.
Representatives of Mandela Foods also pointed out in a Twitter message to the magazine that “Large chain groceries have not been found to be a long term sustainable solution to food insecurity, as their business model is [not] place based, but rather revenue based: If profits don’t hit marks according to their model, stores leave. Retail flight is largely why communities like ours are food insecure.”