The Co-op Difference

We trace our roots to 2012, when meetings were held to discuss the idea of a food co-op in Bay City. A Facebook page was started, but ultimately the group foundered.

Others, still interested, picked up the idea in spring 2014 and began holding monthly meetings. As many as a dozen people turned out. The low point may have been one summer evening when three people showed up. But from there, four people formed a steering committee and moved forward.

A call to Delta College led organizers to the Product Center at Michigan State University. In March 2015, at the Product Center’s request, the steering committee set up an online survey to gauge local interest. A public meeting brought a crowd of about 125, and the online survey had more than 900 voluntary responses — showing more than enough public support to proceed.

In summer 2015, the steering committee — by then expanded to seven people — incorporated as a Michigan non-profit, adopted bylaws, talked with local officials and groups, opened a credit union account, explored available buildings in the downtown area and began applying for grants.

In 2021, we’re still here! We survived COVID and are thriving. We’re at 250 owners and growing!

The co-op is incorporated as Bay City Food Cooperative. However, after further discussion and an online survey, the board voted to do business under the name Bay City Cooperative Market.

P.O. Box 32, Bay City, MI 48707