Juggling a multi-stakeholder enterprise: Next Door Co-op

In this podcast episode Amanda speaks with Deb Bogenhuber, ecologist, slow food proponent and co-founder and Executive Officer of Food Next Door Co-op and Out Of The Box.

As a multi-stakeholder enterprise, the group engages of new migrant farmers, consumers and volunteers.
Committed to nourishing its people as much as the land, Deb says the group keeps up engagement by focusing on communication, listening, and giving decision-making agency to members.


Key conversation points:
  • Principles of fairness for growers
  • Building community: A social enterprise that supports new migrant partners
  • Improving the environment: using organic and regenerative practices that focused on building soil health
  • Food Next Door started life with a need to connect people in community with local food
  • Working with private landholders to grow food on underutilised land
  • Two-way learning approach
  • The multi-stakeholder co-operative model
  • How to keep members engaged
  • Importance of communication
  • Spend some time on deep relationships: your work can fall over is you lose relationships
  • Building a culture of caring: What to do with difficult personalities
  • What is short terms and long term success?
  • Short terms success: Meeting funding requirements
  • Out of The Box challenge: Meeting the sudden increase in demand
  • Longer term goals: To see more local food organisations adopt the model
  • The incredibly challenging nature of building a multi-stakeholder social enterprise.
  • The Community Farm
  • The Community Water Bank
  • Getting support and advice from other multi-stakeholder operations
  • Seeing the impact and joy in the community was a surprise! it turned out to be the most important part!

Upcoming Events

Scroll to Top