Photo Essay: Cultivating Equitable Food-Oriented Development

July 03, 2017

From production to distribution to retail, the Oakland-based nonprofit Mandela MarketPlace (MMP) cultivates a model approach for advancing equitable food-oriented development with an ecosystem of businesses, entrepreneurs, and initiatives firmly rooted in the principles of community-driven solutions and economic self-determination. MMP’s model offers a path forward for other communities impacted by historical and systematic disinvestment—one that is equity driven, can withstand neighborhood change, and prioritizes investment in the people and places that are most often left behind.

Mandela MarketPlace Case Study, Part II: Cultivating Equitable Food-Oriented Development, Lessons from West Oakland

June 20, 2017

This case study, the second installment of a three-part series, explores how the MMP ecosystem has grown and evolved, and the operations, inner workings, and relationships across its tightly woven network. Collectively, MMP’s entities, stakeholders, and community players build on and invest in community assets with the goal of transforming neighborhoods like West Oakland into thriving communities.

Mandela MarketPlace - Healthy Retail Network Marketing Materials

March 22, 2017

Mandela MarketPlace’s Healthy Retail program developed a suite of marketing materials to promote the sale of healthy food items in our corner store network. Through the marketing, we also seek to influence customer perception that corner stores offer a significant amount of staple grocery items, such as canned goods, breads and tortillas, eggs, milk and cheese, as well as fresh fruits and vegetables. 

Photo Essay: Building a Community-Based Food System | Mandela MarketPlace

March 18, 2016

In just a little over 10 years, Mandela MarketPlace has done what was once thought impossible in the rapidly changing San Francisco Bay Area neighborhood of West Oakland: develop, open, and sustain a community-owned, cooperative grocery store, Mandela Foods Cooperative. From its beginnings as a resident-driven grassroots effort to bring good food and good jobs to the community, the nationally recognized local nonprofit Mandela MarketPlace, which emerged from these early organizing efforts, has helped to bring real, tangible changes to residents.

Mandela MarketPlace Case Study, Part I: Building a Community-Based Food System Transforming West Oakland

December 01, 2015

The sustained movement of our work is a testament to the residents, businesses, farmers, and partners who daily work together to improve the health and wealth of each other and their communities through food, culture, and economy. To learn more about Mandela MarketPlace’s story, read the first of a three-part case study series on Building a Community-Based Food System. This series will document a catalyst strategy for shifting the dynamics of poverty and racism, and the impact of that strategy, starting with the first installment: Transforming West Oakland: A Case Study Series on Mandela MarketPlace.

Mandela MarketPlace Healthy Retail Case Study

January 01, 2016

Mandela MarketPlace’s Healthy Retail Network was created to support an evolutionary movement in West Oakland to make this a reality, securing residents’ right to access fresh, affordable and healthy food. The Healthy Retail Network works in partnership with participating corner store owners to improve their product mix and deliver produce biweekly from Mandela’s network of farmers, creating more local access points for healthy food, while supporting thriving small businesses.

Toolkit: Healthy Neighborhood Store Alliance, Pilot

August 15, 2013

Tools, inspiration, and lessons learned.


The Mandela MarketPlace Healthy Neighborhood Store Alliance Pilot toolkit supports community-based movements seeking to increase access to healthy food and transform community health.

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