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Medford Food Co-op is doing OK so far

The Mail Tribune wrote extensively about the efforts to get a food co-op in Medford. Now that it's open, is it prospering or struggling? Will it survive?

— Constance O., via email

Like many commercial endeavors in the Rogue Valley and elsewhere, the Medford Food Co-op took time to get started, but now that it's up and running, said store general manager Emile Amarotico, the venture is on track to break even within the next six to 12 months.

"It is prospering and it will survive, absolutely," Amarotico said. "We've got sufficient working capital to get through the next year or so. A start-up business requires capital to provide products and services until it gains enough traction through sales to cover all the costs."

Sales are steadily increasing and even going against the usual post-holiday trends.

"So far, our January sales are increasing rather than running flat or decreasing as they typically do in January," Amarotico said. "People cut back in their buying for austerity, dieting reasons and so forth after the holidays. So we are delighted sales are increasing over November and December."

A total of 15 percent ahead of December, in fact.

"Our read is that people are starting to feel good about our pricing and service and are starting to change their habits," he said.