Why Buy Local: Arizmendi Bakery and Pizzeria

September 28, 2011
Why Buy Local: Arizmendi Bakery and Pizzeria

by Reem Assil and Jabari Jones   In a tough economy, and in a city known as a haven for big business, it has been a longstanding challenge for small businesses to thrive in Emeryville. But Arizmendi Bakery and Pizzeria has proven to be an exception to the rule. Located in the heart of the San Pablo corridor, it has outlasted several businesses that have come and gone, even Starbucks, which vacated after just a few months.  Arizmendi recently celebrated its 8th year in operation. Many attribute Arizmendi’s success to the unique vision of those who pioneered the worke- cooperative bakery model back in 1997, the year the first  Arizmendi opened in Oakland. A second one, in San Francisco, followed soon after. Inspired by the famous Mondragon Corporation, a federation of cooperatives in Spain, worker rights and community activists in the US established businesses owned and run by workers, creating living-wage jobs and providing an invaluable asset to the communities they inhabited. The name “Arizmendi” comes from Jose Maria Arizmendiarrieta, a Basque priest who played a principal role in the anti-fascist movement during Spains’s Civil War. He inspired workers to start their own factory, Mondragon, which over the past 60 years has

Read more »

Upcoming Events