Co-op Market on Lyme Road

Co-op Explores New use of Market Property

Dear Member-owners,

I want to share some important avenues we are investigating for our business.

After a great deal of thought and consideration, we have recently submitted a zoning variance request to the Town of Hanover that could potentially impact our Community Market on Lyme Road, and in the interest of full disclosure and transparency, I’d like to tell you more about why.
As many of you may know from years of financial reports and annual meeting discussions, despite the best efforts and tireless dedication of many different people here over the years, we have been unable to make this location a viable retail business. To date we’ve incurred losses exceeding $2.6 million. As difficult as this possibility has been to even consider exploring, I want you to know it also comes from a place of hope for our future. The Market is, and has been, an important part of our journey as a cooperative, and taking the next steps to understand the viability of this space for our kitchen is really about building on that history and looking forward.

Currently, the town’s zoning ordinance restricts the property to retail use only. We are requesting a change in zoning to explore the possibility of transforming the retail space to a new home for our Co-op Kitchen. For those of you who are unfamiliar with our Co-op Kitchen, it is our commissary kitchen facility that the co-op has operated for decades that produces many of the fresh, prepared foods you find in our grocery stores. We have been exploring possible new homes for our kitchen for the past year and a half since our current location is nearing the end of its lifecycle. The opportunity to utilize our Community Market space as a new home for our Kitchen has the potential to strengthen our cooperative’s financial health and provide a better facility for our kitchen, allowing us to serve our Upper Valley communities in new ways.

I’m deeply thankful for the amount of hard work, creativity, and dedication that has been poured into the Market over the years by our incredible teams of employees, both past and present. Please know this isn’t a reflection on their efforts, this is truly just about examining all of our possibilities to be thorough, good stewards, of our Member-owners’ business and our cooperative.

The Zoning Board will be making a decision on this request in the next few months, and we will keep you updated on the findings and any potential next steps.

Your Chance To Voice Your Opinion

We’d like to invite you to a conversation and information session about the Co-op Market so you can ask questions and share what’s on your mind. Below is a list of sessions we have scheduled for you.

Friday, June 14 · 1 – 2 pm
Lebanon Store (12 Centerra Pkwy) in the Learning Center Room

Monday, June 17 · 8:30 – 9:30 am
Hanover Store (45 South Park St) in the Hanover Board Room

Virtual Meeting
Join us virtually on Tuesday, June 18th at 5 PM for a virtual meeting regarding information about the Co-op Market.
No RSVP required. Simple save the date and the zoom link to your calender.

Board Community Meeting (In-Person Event)
Join us at a special Board Community meeting on Wednesday, June 26 at 5:30 PM at the Lebanon Co-op Learning Center (12 Centerra Pkwy) where you’ll have your chance to speak with members of our Board of Directors regarding this issue.
RSVP is required for this in-person event.

Thank you, everyone, and please reach out to me anytime if you want to talk.

Dawn Archambeault (She/Her)
Director of Marketing & Consumer Relations

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Dawn Archambeault

Dawn is the Director of Marketing & Consumer Relations.

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