Lake Co-op began as the Lake County Community Co-op (LCCC) in January of 2008 as a result of a grassroots movement of Lake County citizens wanting to increase their access to affordable organic, preferably local, food. These visionaries began with an all volunteer buying club that eventually launched an online ordering and distribution system (FOODS). By 2010, LCCC had 10 drop points throughout Lake County and products from over 12 farms and value-added producers.
Simultaneously, the visionaries launched a community garden effort, a farmers' market in Clearlake, and monthly education gatherings. CREATE (Cultivating Responsible Evolutionary Action Through Ecommunity), a public benefit non-profit, was formed to house these initiatives.
In 2010, the California Center for Cooperative Development (CCCD) completed a feasibility study for LCCC that indicated poor market conditions for a brick and motor storefront. The Board opted to strengthen the online ordering and distribution system, feeling that the geographical barriers created the conditions for this successful model.
In September of 2011, LCCC incorporated as a California Cooperative and adopted bylaws soon after.
Today, Lake Co-op has over 250 active members and sponsors CREATE's Friday Night Farmers' Market in Clearlake (June-Sept, 5-8pm, Redbud Park), Walter's Garden (a community garden at the Highlands Senior Service Center in Clearlake) and LCCC Presents... (an educational event series).