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Local, Member-Owned Grocer Portland Food Co-op Soft Opens Today

Customers are encouraged to fill out feedback forms during a three-week trial phase, leading to a grand opening December 10.

Adam H. Callaghan

Rite-Aid Plaza is getting a high profile addition today as the Portland Food Co-op opens its doors for limited shopping hours: 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. The store will be open to the public, both member-owners and non-member-owners alike. Almost 2,100 shoppers have already paid the $100 deposit to help fund the co-op and become member-owners, but there's no limit to that number, and new members can join at any time.

Starting tomorrow, Thursday, November 20, opening hours will be Monday - Saturday 9 a.m. - 7 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. The board of the co-op shared a note on future opening hours: "If you'd like to see the store open additional hours please come, shop your co-op, and tell your friends too so we can hire more staff, and stay open longer."

The co-op also stated in an email that "current product selection isn't necessarily permanent" - that is, feedback can and will influence what items are stocked going forward - and that they will "continue to add more local products" as they build relationships with farmers and producers.

portland food co-op featured maine producers

290 Congress Street, Portland, website. Opening hours today only, 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Starting November 20, Monday - Saturday 9 a.m. - 7 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Longer hours expected eventually.