New Orleans Food Co-Op

The Pitch

The New Orleans Food Cooperative is a consumer-owned cooperative located at 2372 St. Claude. Our mission is to provide access to healthy food at a fair price, offer a center for community activity, promote local and regional food production, and practice environmental responsibility and sustainability.

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New Orleans Food Co-Op
Lori Burge

Lori Burge

The Entrepreneur

Lori Burge is a Freelance Co-op Development Consultant, currently serving as the General Manager for the New Orleans Food Co-op, which opened in October 2011. To support new and developing co-ops, Lori brings specialty knowledge of governance, strategic planning, labor budgeting, and community outreach and organization. She served as the Co-op Development Specialist for the Northwest Cooperative Development and spent 12 years working at People’s Food Co-op in Portland, Oregon.

The Impact

  • Partnered with Market Umbrella and the Second Harvest Food Bank to open a mobile market.
  • Opened a 4,000 sq. ft. full-service grocery store located in the New Orleans Healing Center
  • More than 2,500 members
  • Generates over $2.7 million in revenue
  • 700,000 pounds of fresh produce provided to the New Orleans community
  • $600,000 in healthy foods sold to customers purchasing with SNAP
  • Generates nearly $1.9 million in living-wages, benefits (including medical, dental, vision, paid time off, and more) and staff development for the local workforce
  • Created 20+ full/part-time jobs for New Orleanians
  • Supporting 75+ local farmers & producers and providing over $800,000 in gross revenues into the local food economy since opening
  • Over $62,000 in food and other donations to local community groups and community members since opening
  • LifeCity Certified as a Stage 3 –“Transformation” Green Business
  • Recipient of the 2015 Retail Sustainability Excellence Award
  • Member of and active participant in the the Domestic Fair Trade Association working to create a more just food economy


2011-2012 Ventures





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