Quebec's first organic producer grocery store opens in Montreal

La première épicerie de producteurs-trices bios du Québec voit le jour à Montréal

Making Quebec's organic foods accessible to as many people as possible is the objective set by the members of the Cooperative for Ecological Proximity Agriculture (CAPÉ), instigators of the Biolocalaux grocery project launched last week in Montreal.

The launch of the grocery store was marked by an atmosphere of curiosity and anticipation, with the participation of more than 200 citizens who came to celebrate this significant milestone for ultra-local agriculture.

During the happy hour event, visitors were able to discover the new grocery store facilities and chat with the initiators of the project as well as some producers who generously came for the occasion. The emphasis is on the grocery store's innovative business model, which will exclusively feature organic, local and seasonal products directly supplied by family farms. The objective is to guarantee fair remuneration for producers and fair prices for consumers by eliminating intermediaries, while encouraging Quebecers to eat what the region can offer them.

Léon Bibeau-Mercier, president of the Cooperative for Ecological Proximity Agriculture, explained the underlying philosophy: “By promoting direct transactions between farmers and citizens, it is possible to provide accessible, fresh, healthy food. and seasonal, while fairly remunerating those who produce them. This added value can be reinvested in sustainable agricultural practices, labor remuneration and the fight against climate change.”

An initiative to replicate

CAPÉ plans to multiply this grocery store model across Quebec to support ecological local agriculture, in accordance with the Resilience Manifesto , launched the previous year by the Family Farmers Network.

Émilie Viau-Drouin , general director of CAPÉ, was very enthusiastic about the future of this project: “Without an intermediary, farmers and citizens will have the opportunity to shape the future of agriculture and 'food. It is a necessary future to ensure our collective resilience. We can't wait to see what the future holds, as do the hundreds of citizens who have supported us since the beginning of this project."

Émilie Viau-Drouin also believes that this grocery store model will offer greater flexibility to consumers who want to eat organic and local, but for whom the organic basket or market kiosk models are less suitable.

Last summer, the farmers behind the initiative tested community interest with a farmers' market located at the building's entrance. The positive feedback confirmed the relevance of the project.

Maxime Dion, co-owner of Ferme la Bourrasque, shared his enthusiasm: “We really felt the support of the community. Every week, regulars came to express their satisfaction at seeing us in their neighborhood. Many of them even offered to help us. It’s a warm welcome that warms our hearts.”

A project for the community

The opening of this grocery store is just the beginning of a series of events to come. CAPÉ, faithful to its mission, wishes to make this space a meeting place between the population and producers. Throughout the year, the community will have the opportunity to get to know farmers better during numerous activities, such as workshops and conferences.

In addition to the events, the grocery store team will play an educational role by raising public awareness of issues related to agriculture, the seasonality of vegetables and the reality of farmers. Staff have been trained on these topics, and educational materials will be gradually integrated into the grocery store over the coming weeks. It’s an exciting initiative that promises to bring people closer to the source of their food while strengthening local communities and economies.

Biolocals Grocery Store
2884 rue Masson, Montreal
H1Y 1W9

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