Mississippi Market’s mission is to create positive change in the community by influencing the production, distribution and enjoyment of food. We offer members and shoppers a choice of products and information that promote personal, economic and environmental health and sustainability. We act as a buying agent for our members, not a selling agent for manufacturers.
At Mississippi Market we are presented with a wide range of products and must determine what products should or should not be carried by our stores. This product policy guides us in making these buying decisions and informs consumers about what they can expect from our products.
First and foremost, our products will be natural: Containing no artificial flavors, artificial colors, artificial preservatives, artificial sweeteners, high fructose corn syrup or hydrogenated oils.
We will give strong preference to products that are:
1) Certified organic
2) Locally produced
3) Produced utilizing practices that support sustainable agriculture
4) Fair trade certified
5) Free of genetically modified organisms *
6) Free of growth hormones or antibiotics
7) Raised using sound animal husbandry and humane practices
8) Fairly priced, offering our members value for their money
9) Packaged minimally, and or packaged, with materials that are manufactured and disposed of in an environmentally sound manner
10) Produced and distributed by vendors who meet city and state civil rights policies and run their businesses ethically
11) Produced or distributed by cooperatively owned vendors
12) Produced by manufacturers who do not utilize animal testing
13) Help meet the needs of people on specialty diets, such as products that are wheat-free, gluten-free, vegan, etc
14) Available for purchase on the WIC program
15) Desired by our members and shoppers
Occasionally there are exceptions to this product policy, for products deemed necessary by our Purchasing Manager, for eligibility with the WIC program or for temporary substitutions. These products are reviewed annually as we search for more natural alternatives.
In general, the co-op’s preference is to educate shoppers about food controversies and allow them to make their own decisions, rather than control choices through bans or boycotts. We will provide information about food issues in a useful and timely manner.
*While we actively oppose GMO foods and prefer to not carry any items using genetic engineering/modification, it is nearly impossible to promise our stores are free of such items. GMO foods require no labeling in the US, and most manufacturers will not release sourcing information for their ingredients. We continue to lobby for labeling requirements and work to educate our shoppers about foods that are more likely to contain GMO ingredients, so that they may choose what is right for their diets.
Effective May 1, 2013: Mississippi Market Co-op will not add any new products containing corn, soy, canola, non-cane sugar, cottonseed oil, papaya or summer squash unless they are certified organic or Non-GMO Project verified. An affidavit of non-GMO sourcing may be accepted in some situations.
This policy may be amended by management at any time, and will be reviewed annually by the Board of Directors.
Revised May 1, 2013