The Great River Co-op Blog

Thank you to our Farmers' Market Vendors!



The Great River Co-op Board of Directors would like to thank all those who will be setting up a table at the upcoming Walpole Thanksgiving Farmer’s Market.


This is an annual event that the community looks forward to every year, and we are honored to be a part of keeping it going.









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Join us for the Thanksgiving Market!

The Great River Co-op will be hosting the Thanksgiving Farmers' Market in the Walpole Town Hall on Saturday, November 23rd from 9am to 1pm. The Market will be held inside this year, so the weather can't ruin our fun!


We hope you'll come out and peruse the seasonal goodies available from your favorite local farms and producers while catching up with good friends and getting ready for the Thanksgiving Feast!


For information about becoming a vendor, contact Karen West at The cost for a space will be $20.


Please share, and invite friends and neighbors to attend!

We hope to see you there! 

It's Co-op Month - Come to a Listening Event

This October, the Great River Co-op is joining over 40,000 co-operatives and credit unions across the United States in celebrating Co-op Month, observed nationally since 1964. To celebrate, the Great River Co-op board of directors will be holding an informal listening series of events at locations within the region.


This year’s theme, “Co-ops: By the Community, For the Community,” was chosen by the National Cooperative Business Association to promote how co-operative enterprises enable people to work together to meet their needs and build stronger communities.


Informal Listening Session one  will be at the Walpole Town Hall, Saturday, October 19th  from 10:00am to noon.

Informal Listening Session two will be at Wunderbar on Sunday, October 27th from 3-5pm.

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Great River Co-op Tours Badger Balm Facility

The Great River Co-op Board of Directors was recently invited to take a tour of the Badger Balm facility in Gilsum, New Hampshire. 


The purpose of our visit was to talk with co-founder Bill Whyte and Badger’s construction consultant, Steve Horton, about their construction materials and methods so that we can consider them as we begin working on plans to build the Great River Co-op facility. 


We would like to emulate these in our own building, because they align with our values of supporting our regional economy by sourcing materials as locally as possible, and making the construction and operations of the store as sustainable as possible.


Thank you to Bill Whyte for the tour! More photos are up on our Facebook Page. 


Borrow Grocery Story at Area Libraries

The Great River Co-op is donating copies of Grocery Story: The Promise of Food Co-ops In The Age of Grocery Giants to area libraries so our community can learn more about the impact of a food co-op here in Walpole.


“The author, Jon Steinway, a Board member of the Kootenay Co-op in British Columbia, documents the consolidation of the food industry—from production to distribution to retail sale—with compelling cases for why this is not only bad for individual consumers but also for our entire food system,” said Great River Co-op President, Steve Fortier.  “Jon makes a strong case that food co-ops are an antidote to the economic, environmental and health challenges posed by a national food system with very few owners and decision-makers.”

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Please Welcome Karen West

Please join us in welcoming our newest board member, Karen West!


Karen grew up in Upstate New York and moved to New Hampshire in 2007 to work at C&S Wholesale Grocers after graduating from Cornell University with a degree in Applied Economics & Management. She currently works as a Sales & Marketing Manager for the distribution division of New Hampshire Industries based in Claremont. Karen and her husband, Jed, who grew up in Bellows Falls, moved to Alstead in 2011 and soon after started their own hobby farm raising chickens, rabbits and bees. 


Karen wants to be involved because she is interested in finding ways to make local and healthy food more readily available and affordable in our community. 


Those interested in getting involved are encouraged to contact Steve Fortier at or 603-903-2602. To learn more about joining the Great River Co-op, please visit and on Facebook at

Annual Meeting 2019 A Success!



The Great River Co-op held its Annual Meeting on Tuesday, April 30th at the Congregational Church in Walpole. 


Amanda Littleton, District Manager of the Cheshire County Conservation District, spoke to attendees about the challenges and opportunities for a robust regional food system. Citing local examples of initiatives and programs already in place, her talk left attendees educated and enthused to do their part to contribute. 



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Great River Co-op Reaches 800 Members!



The Great River Co-op, a cooperative grocery store coming to Walpole, has reached an important milestone of 800 household members.


According to the newly-established Seven Roots Group (a co-op of co-op consultants,) 600-800 members is when a Board should start looking for a site. The Great River Co-op already has its site, on Tedd Benson’s property between Pinnacle View and The Hungry Diner, so the project is on course when compared with other cooperatives.


Community members interested in getting more involved in moving the project forward are encouraged to contact Steve Fortier at or 603-903-2602.