January 17, 2023 3:09pm
A board member from the non-profit organization Eat Local Grey Bruce has asked Grey County council for support as they try to recover from insolvency.
The organization works to connect local customers with local producers.
Marcelina Salazar blamed their insolvency on rising costs and new resources needed to meet increased demand during the pandemic, followed by a dramatic decline in sales in the spring of 2022. Then the organization was forced to vacate its Owen Sound warehouse when it was purchased by Grey County for use as housing. They now pay $,5000 a month on rental fees for their new more expensive warehouse in Meaford.
Salazar has requested a $20,000 grant from Grey County, conditional on the achievement of a $115,000 crowd funding goal by January 26. Salazar said the money will go back to donors if they don’t meet their target.
The board is looking for volunteers and pledges from consumers to keep buying from Eat Local.
“Since the announcement of our insolvency on December 16, a group of board members and volunteers have been working around the clock to revitalize and reinvent the organization,” said Salazar. “We have launched a crowdfunding campaign that has raised over $34,000 in about two weeks.”
“New volunteers and pledges from members continue weekly or biweekly orders,” added Salazar. “The response to these requests represents viability, as they indicate that Eat Local is indeed meeting a need, and that the wider population will continue to use our services, as well as ensuring that the organization has the human capacity to relaunch.”
Currently about 950 consumers and 50 producers are members of Eat Local Grey Bruce. Grey County will receive a staff report on the financial request at an upcoming meeting.