Riverwest Co-op Suspends Cafe Operations
Grocery Store will Remain Open for Now

MILWAUKEE – The Riverwest Co-op Grocery and Cafe announced today that the cafe portion of the business is closed for the foreseeable future, as of today.

“We’re sad to announce that the cafe at the Riverwest Co-op is closing today after 18 years of serving our neighbors and the greater Milwaukee area,” said Grocery Coordinator Nick Baran. “We want to express our sincere gratitude to everyone who supported the cafe over the years, especially in the last few months. Unfortunately, after looking hard at the numbers, the board of directors determined it was impossible to continue regular cafe service.”

The grocery store will remain open for now but its future is uncertain. If grocery sales do not improve, the Riverwest Co-op, in operation since 2001, could be forced to close in the coming months.

“We are putting all of our focus and energy into operating the grocery store in order to secure the future of the Co-op,” said Baran. “We are currently seeking funding to bridge the gap between where we are today and where we need to be to keep the store open.”

Sales at the grocery store and at the cafe have lagged since the start of the pandemic. Like many restaurants, the Co-op Cafe closed for most of 2020 and 2021. Sales at the grocery store have not returned to pre-pandemic levels.

The Riverwest Co-op is a natural food store and features organic, local, vegan, vegetarian, and fair trade products. The grocery store offers a vibrant selection of organic fruits and vegetables, a large bulk section that includes dried beans, rice, nuts, spices, cereal, and flour, a variety of dairy products, numerous vegan selections, as well as staples such as pasta and canned goods, frozen treats, wellness and body care products, household goods, and cleaning supplies.

Membership is not required to shop at the Co-op, but anyone is welcome to become a member and receive a 5% discount. Becoming a member means supporting and determining the future of the member-owned co-operative business.

Weekly specials available to all, regardless of membership, include 10% off all produce on Mondays, 10% off El Rey products on Tuesdays, 10% off all wellness/body care items on Wednesdays, 10% bulk items on Thursdays, and 10% off a different local vendor every Friday.

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