On June 25, 1975, Country People's Warehouse and Santa Rosa Community Market opened for business. Within a year Country People's Warehouse was serving ten stores, three dozen buying clubs, and several restaurants. In 1976, CPW incorporated as a nonprofit. The store was operated entirely by volunteers from the membership.
In early 1976; Sunshine Produce Distribution was founded to truck organic vegetables from local growers and from the San Francisco produce market. CPW organized Morningstar trucking, a small team of all-woman truckers with routes from San Diego, Fresno, and as far as British Colombia and Arizona.
Country People's Warehouse, Community Market, Sunshine Produce, Morningstar Trucking and Red Clover Bakery (which eventually became Alvarado Street) banded together in April 1976 under an umbrella organization, the Red Clover Workers' Brigade.
By 1987 Santa Rosa Community Market was the only remaining enterprise in the Red Clover Workers’ Brigade and was established at its current location. RCWB is still the organization that operates Community Market as Mutual Benefit Corporation and a worker-run model to this day.
In 2013 Community Market opened a second store, located in Sebastopol. With the support of our loyal customers, we've been providing Sonoma County with natural foods, organic produce, and holistic health products for over 40 years. We're looking forward to serving our community for 40 more.
Red Clover Workers Brigade about 1979. Vicki Beard facilitating (standing) L to R at picnic table: Vicki Lessin, Michael Carlin, Denise Anderson, Sorrel Page, Marsha Taylor Ebright, Judy Depenau.
Nadia spent her first year in a backpack at the Morgan Street store.
"Doug Gosling (Occidental Ecology Center) pulls up to the store one day with a bouquet of organic basil."