A Letter From Our CEO

Sept. 13, 2017

In 1998, when Puget Consumers Co-op changed its name to PCC Natural Markets, the world was a very different place. You could buy a home in Seattle for $180,000, a dozen eggs cost 88 cents, and organic foods were years away from being stocked in the average kitchen. At the time, adding “natural” to our name made it clear to shoppers who we were, how we were different and what we believed.

Now, 20 years later, Seattle is one of the fastest-growing cities in the nation, drawing thousands of potential new members to our region. More people recognize the importance of natural and organic products to support their health and the environment’s, which means these products are more widely available. The word “natural” remains undefined by regulators and, as a result, is overused, diluted and less impactful.

Over a year ago, we started to really think about what these changes mean for our co-op. We asked ourselves, “How do we stay relevant in one of the most competitive grocery cities in the country, stay true to our co-op values and honor our members who set us apart?”

We talked to members, shoppers, PCC staff and our Board of Trustees to answer this question, and you reinforced what has made PCC relevant for over six decades. You told us you appreciate that we’re member-owned and always have been. You value that we have direct, personal relationships with local producers, farmers and ranchers. You trust that in every department of our store, we have the highest quality standards around, and you appreciate that our staff are always willing to share their knowledge, passion and a smile. In fact, it’s this sense of community that brings you back to PCC, time and again.

And so, we felt our name should reflect this. That’s why we are changing our name to PCC Community Markets. PCC Community Markets is who we already are, and who we’ve always been since our modest start as a food club in 1953.

With the new name comes other exciting changes. A new logo. New, reusable totes. A new, easier-to-navigate website with an improved recipe search. New aprons for our staff. We’re even launching a new, local, organic, grass-fed, animal welfare-approved PCC yogurt in partnership with Pure Èire Dairy — because PCC really is about the culture we create.

All of these changes include a long-standing dedication to organic and natural foods, and honest shelves. In fact, PCC’s product standards are among the highest in the nation.

So, whether you’ve been a member for a few months or 50 years; whether you care deeply about food and ingredient quality and policy, or are a champion of the co-op economy; or, whether you simply want to support a local Seattle market and the farmers, ranchers and producers who fill our shelves — thank you for taking a seat at our table and for being part of the PCC community.

 

Cate Hardy
CEO, PCC Community Markets

 

Cate Hardy

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