The aim of our cooperative bakery is to produce good quality bread in a socially and environmentally responsible way. We will use organic wheat, rye and spelt flour, some of which will be locally sourced from Yorkshire organic millers. Alongside this we will use sourdough fermentation, some commercial baker’s yeast, and co-operative whole food suppliers such as Suma and Lembas for additional ingredients such as salt, seeds, nuts and olives.
We want to make our bread affordable and available to a wide range of people and include the local community in our decision making.
Our customers are people with an interest in good food and some also having interest in political and social aspects of food sovereignty. With this in mind we want to make sure that we can source local ingredients and support other local producers to be a part of and build local food networks that involve our stakeholders in strengthening these networks.
Once the bakery becomes more established, we will enter the next three phases of the business which complement and expand our vision.
- To very quickly after opening to start to offer baking lessons to encourage our customers to start to make their own bread at home. As the space will be a commercial kitchen we will encourage others with food skills to come and run workshops from the kitchen (e.g. brewing, herbal medicine making, fermented foods).
- Also we would like to expand into other food-based workshops and classes including those around issues of food sovereignty and healthcare.
- When and if we need to expand we will look for premises that are better suited in which to start a café in the same space as the bakery, developing a wider range of products including bread and pastry based savouries and patisserie, and serving a few simple wholesome meals.
- We would also like to create a multi-use kitchen alongside the bakery as a kind of food hub, to allow other small food producers to run their businesses from the same establishment. An element of this may be in place on start up if we need to share the space to save money on rental costs. This will be expanded.
For all this to occur, it is important for us to build a community of supporters in our venture and for us to respond to what that community wants and provide them with this.