Planet. People. Profit.

At this CO-OP we have our priorities of business aligned in that order. Our nearly 90-year history of supporting local economies and markets to provide for the community we serve defines our values in the present day. A circular economy drastically reduces food miles in distribution, ensures fresher and healthier products, supports local food producers, empowers small businesses through turbulent times, and retains more dollars toward sustainable development through democratic practices within the community. When the Covid-19 pandemic struck – this CO-OP remained resilient, adapted, and continued to provide essential services to the community while supporting its staff with policies that protected their safety and livelihoods. As inflation and climate change created chaos in our supply chains, we managed to pivot thanks to the flexibility of our management staff and best vendors to offset the impacts to our community.  

Today, as a small local business, we are a thriving community hub with a strong focus on modernizing our sustainability efforts. Our store-wide Zero Waste Initiatives showcase current impacts in addition to laying the foundation for further advancement with new projects, enhanced sustainability metrics, and full transparency for the community we serve.  

Key Metrics: 

  • 39,195 lbs of compostable waste diverted from landfills through Rot Star Compost in 2023 (58,000 lbs total since Jun 2022) 
  • Rot n’ Roll community composting program is actively reducing waste in 29 households since launching in Aug 2023 
  • 22,900 lbs of produce, dairy, and baked goods redistributed to the community through Philly Food Rescue in 2023 
  • Biodegradable packaging for Deli sandwiches/fried foods introduced in September 2023 
  • 70+ local vendor partnerships! 

Supporting the Swarthmore CO-OP anchors local producers and lowers the carbon footprint of your shopping experience but most importantly – it provides our business with resources to modernize our equipment, embark on new projects, and reduce our impact on the planet while continuing to support our employees and serve our community. 

Interested in learning more about our local partnerships? This map displays the locations of over 70 vendors who specialize in incredible products, enrich our local economies, and reduce the food mileage of the groceries you buy!