“I think the rule is If you walk more than 10 blocks to buy food then your food conspiracy is too high.” says Emily Huston, a co-owner and worker at Other Avenues Grocery Cooperative. Emily is referring to the grassroots organization, Food Conspiracy, that started in 1968 in which households and food buying businesses combined their resources to buy food in bulk from local farmers and small wholesalers and distribute it to their communities. Out of this organization and movement, sustainable food buying businesses were born under the collective motto “food for people, not for profit”. Today, Other Avenues is one of the only businesses left In San Francisco that has kept the Food Conspiracy spirit. A purely vegetarian grocery cooperative, their wholesale products are sourced from nearby farmers or local organic produce distribution companies like Veritable Vegetable, a San Francisco women-led sustainable business.
“It’s a unique place to work because there is no ‘boss’ in a sense. All workers own the company and are accountable for their own actions.” explains Jeremy Greco, another co-owner and worker at Other Avenues.
Jeremy is referring to the 19 employees at Other Avenues that are all co-owners and therefore each worker has their own share of responsibilities. Because Other Avenues is run by a tight knit committed group of workers, there is also a training period of 6 months to ensure there is a similar mold of commitment in all workers before they can become a co-owner. “It’s a wonderful place to work - there’s nothing like it. I can’t imagine working anywhere else and having someone to report too, it would be too weird.” chuckles Chris Julian, another co-owner and worker.
Shop at Other Avenues Grocery Cooperative in the Outer Sunset for fresh local produce any day from 8am to 9pm.