In the Media

The latest news published about the Gardiner Food Co-op & Café

July 7, 2015

The Co-op made it on WABI5 for our Grand Opening and our StateFarm grant award.  (Click on the link to see the short interview.)

July 6, 2015

Gardiner co-op to hold grand opening Saturday

CentralMaine GARDINER — The Gardiner Food Co-op & Cafe is holding the ceremony from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, featuring live music, food tastings, a raffle and kids’ activities. (read more)

June 5, 2015

Gardiner Gets a Food Co-op

GARDINER — The food co-operative ticker in Maine just went up again: the Gardiner Food Co-op and Cafe opened its doors May 31. (read more)

April 17, 2015

Gardiner Co-op awarded $90,000 federal grant

MaineBiz – The Gardiner Food Co-op & Cafe was recently awarded a $90,000 Community Development Block Grant to help fund the downtown storefront that’s set to open in late May, according to a release from the co-op…. (read more)


Featured on the front cover of the Kennebec Current and Belgrade lakes region reader for December.

November 16, 2014

Gardiner Co-Op and Cafe announces Water Street location

Portland Press Herald GARDINER — The new home of the Gardiner Co-Op and Cafe will be the old home of Greenhouse Games at 269 Water St.

The location of the proposed grocery store and cafe was announced Saturday night at a celebration for organizers and supporters held next door at Circling the Square Fine Art Press, also known as Art Dogs.

(read more)

November 12, 2014

Gardiner Co-op to announce downtown location

CentralMaine The organizers of Gardiner Co-op & Cafe, a venture that’s been in the works for more than three years, say an angel investor bought a building for the group and will let it lease space… (read more)

October 25, 2014

The Gardiner Food Co-op was featured on Maine Calling for Co-op Month

If you missed it, here is the link to the MPBN Maine Calling show for last Tuesday, featuring two of our board members!

“Just what is a co-op and why are they cropping up across the state? Listen to co-op board members Jonathan Ault for Gardiner City Council and Veronique Vendette during this Tuesday’s edition of MPBN Maine Calling from noon to 1pm. Hope you can listen in and support the co-op efforts happening all over the state.”

Sept 1, 2014

The Gardiner Food Co-op and Sunrise Natural Food have joined forces!

This has been in the works for a while and we are ready to share the great news:

SUNRISE NATURAL FOOD will be uniting with the GARDINER FOOD CO-OP at the future storefront. Picture everything the Co-op had originally planned PLUS a supplements department overseen by Karen Benner! We are all very pleased about this partnership and believe the combination will be a great enhancement to this community endeavor.

July 23, 2014



3-IMG_4903On July 19th, the Gardiner Food Co-op & Café held a recipe contest at the Gardiner Farmers’ Market.  The smells of grilled cheese and hearty soups wafted from the Gardiner Common as more than 50 judges (from the general public) tasted the 10 competing recipes.

The contest was held for the purpose of building the menu at the Gardiner Food Co-op & Cafe, set to open later this year.

In addition to purchasing from the various vendors, Market goers enjoyed music by Ian Pillsbury and got to sample recipes that members of the community entered in the contest.  “The Co-op is all about community ownership and involvement, and what better way to do that than through the food we will serve everyday!  Having the café menu come directly from the community ensures us that they will love what we serve them.” said Sarah Miller, member of the board.

On the menu: Mom’s Soup (chunky vegetables), The Asian (chunky vegetables in a curry coconut milk, with ginger and lemon grass), Chicken Chili, Italian Wedding Soup, and Williamsburg Turkey Soup.  For the specialty grilled cheeses we had an “Oven Roasted Tomato Grilled Cheese”, “Pickled Summer Squash Grilled Cheese”, “Me-so-cheesy: vegan Grilled Cheese”, “the Gardener”, and “The Gardiner AuJus”.

Votes were tallied after the end of the farmers market. The race was very close for the soups and it was the Chicken Chili recipe (from Karen Jacques) which took the lead by 4 votes.  As for the grilled cheese recipe contest, the result took us all by surprise as the number one choice leading by 10 votes ended up being the only vegan (non-dairy) option on the menu. Me-so-cheesy (from Alex Rosenberg) is a cashew cheese and miso-pesto sandwich.

1-photo 4Since cooperation is the opposite of competition we are excited to announce that everyone is a winner!  So, if you didn’t get a chance to participate in the contest that took place this weekend at the farmers market, you will get to try all of these soups and specialty grilled cheese sandwiches on our menu later this year.

The Gardiner Food Co-op & Café will be located in downtown Gardiner and will offer local, wholesome, bulk and fairly-priced food.  In addition to its grocery store, the Co-op will be a gathering place for events, workshops, live music and more.  Everyone will be welcome to shop and gather at the storefront but those who choose to purchase a member-owner share will actually become part owner, have a voice in store policies, in how the business is run, and have a myriad of member-owner benefits.

“You know what they say: we are what we eat! So surely we can expect café eaters to be sharp and intriguing, just like the food on the Co-op’s menu ” says Véronique Vendette, chair of the Co-op board.  We look forward to seeing you at the café later this year!

Gardiner, Hallowell caught in flood insurance confusion

Recent changes to the federal flood insurance program returned some of the insurance premium subsidies for older buildings, but it’s not clear how much the rates will increase in the future. […]

Coming to Downtown Gardiner: Kennebec Local Food Initiative’s Member-owned Co-op Grocery Store

Locavores have a lot to celebrate– and more to come– in Gardiner. After years of planning, research, and effort, organizers and an ever-growing group of supporters are optimistic that their vision of a downtown community food co-op and grocery store will become a reality this year .’ […]

Downtown food co-op and cafe could sprout in Gardiner by summer’s end

The Kennebec Local Food Initiative says its store, featuring groceries, coffee and prepared food, will ‘bring local food to the entire community.’ […]

Food co-ops on the rise as Mainers seek local foods, buying power

The number of member-owned food co-operatives in Maine is on a course to almost double to 11 this year, leavened by a taste for locally produced food that is safe and healthy. […]

Gardiner Food Co-op holds open house event

The Gardiner Food Co-op and Café recently held a pizza night and open house at Circling the Square Fine Arts Press in downtown Gardiner. Attendees learned about the future Gardiner Food Co-op, set to open in a few months in downtown Gardiner. […]