Co-op cracks plastic packaging solution for own-brand Easter Eggs...

Co-op is removing the plastic packaging from its Easter eggs, as part of its commitment to eliminate unnecessary plastic from its own-brand ranges.

The convenience retailer is eradicating the use of plastic inner packaging and windows for all five of its hollow Fairtrade Easter eggs, which will save over 14 tonnes of unnecessary plastic.

The move comes as the ethical retailer gets ready to roll out the UK’s largest ever scheme to collect and recycle plastic film as part of its ambition to make 100% of its own-brand packaging easy to recycle by the end of this year.

Better in a bunch: Fairtrade banana farmers weathering the storm together...

If you live in the Caribbean, you know cyclones and storms. They have always been a feature of the climate in this part of the world, but in recent years, climate change has caused them to become stronger and more frequent. For banana farmers, who rely on their crops for their income, to have their farms flattened by the storms can be devastating. With prices for bananas so low, making it hard to build up savings for emergencies, the only way to recover and replant their farms is to take out loans. Some end up with large debts.  

So, what has March got to offer?

March brings with it the promise of gardening and warm(er), sunny days, as Earth turns its frostbitten cheek to winter and springs forth from the vernal equinox.

March, the third month of the year, was named for the Roman god of war, Mars. Traditionally, this was the time of year to resume military campaigns that had been interrupted by winter. 

In the early Roman calendar, March (or Martius) was the first month of the calendar year. As March brought the first day of spring with the vernal equinox, it was the start of new beginnings.

Fairtrade Fortnight Storytelling...Farmers biting back at the climate crisis with Fairtrade Cocoa...

Farmers and workers around the world are on the front line of the climate crisis, from rising temperatures and changing weather patterns to deforestation and water scarcity. Many farmers in countries vulnerable to climate change say it’s the biggest challenge they face right now – and they’ve done the least to cause it. With the climate crisis increasingly threatening their livelihoods, it can be hard for farmers to fight back. Particularly when they’ve been on the receiving end of decades of poor prices for their crops and paying for daily basics is already a struggle.

Store closure announced

We’re sad to announce the closure of our store in Mountbatten Road, Braintree.

We originally acquired our Mountbatten Road food store from The Co-op Group following the retail giant’s purchase of the Alldays chain in 2004, and have since made the store an integral part of community life. However, a combination of factors have meant that the store is no longer making an acceptable level of return for the Society, and has now been sold to a private retailer.

Home Delivery trial starts soon!

Your co-op food shopping delivered to your door in less than an hour? Sounds like a dream, but it will shortly be a reality.

A new home delivery service will soon be trialled across central Chelmsford following a partnership with online couriers, Snappy Shopper. The service, available thanks to their website and mobile-app, will initially be offered to those closest to the Chelmsford city centre, and will enable shoppers to order their convenience shop online and see it arrive at their door within 60 minutes.

FAIRTRADE FORTNIGHT 2021 is fast approaching. Here are the key messages...


For two weeks each year at the end of February and start of March, thousands of individuals, companies and groups across the UK come together to share the stories of the people who grow our food and drinks, mine our gold and who grow the cotton in our clothes, people who are often exploited and underpaid. 

Quadrant Restaurant Chips In With An Ap-peeling Donation


Local charity Sanctus have received a spud-tacular donation from Quadrant department store’s award-winning restaurant, Brambles.

Unable to open due to lockdown laws, Brambles have gifted over half a ton of potatoes to the charity, which supports the local homeless population and feeds them on a daily basis.

The delivery was overseen by the charity’s resident hound, a Rottweiler-Staffy-cross called Tyler.

Don’t just shop at the co-op – help us improve your community!

We are looking for people who are active in our community to step forward and help guide our business into the future.

Now in our 154th year, we own food shops, travel agents, funeral homes and the Quadrant department stores across Essex. We are one of the oldest surviving businesses in the county. Throughout our illustrious history, we have made considerable reinvestment into the area, we continue to champion all sorts of ethical and environmental issues, and we are one of Essex’s biggest employers with a workforce of over 800.


Get your frying pans at the ready as one of our favourite days of the year is ALMOST here - it’s Pancake Day!

Here are some fun facts about Shrove Tuesday (Tuesday 16th February 2021) to get you in the mood for the day:

1. The idea of eating pancakes on Shrove Tuesday is more than 1,000 years old! They were originally invented as a way of using up all the leftover fatty and rich foods before Lent begins on Ash Wednesday.

2. In total, Brits use an unbelievable 52 million eggs on Pancake Day. That’s 22 million more than any other day.