Basin Electric employee sits on board of local food co-op

Jared Barnhart

Jared Barnhart (left) and his wife Jenn volunteer to collect donations at BisMan Community Food Co-op’s table during a farmer’s market last summer.

When it comes to food, Jared Barnhart, Basin Electric multi-media specialist II, says, “Fresh is best.”

A few years ago, Barnhart and his wife Jenn, started what was supposed to be a hobby garden consisting of some peas and tomatoes. The garden grew by leaps and bounds – and acres. Now their “garden” is a farming business, Humble Cottage Farm. “When we realized how much better it tastes when it’s freshly picked as opposed to something that has been sitting on the shelf, we were hooked,” Barnhart says.

Their passion for growing and sharing fresh produce led them to be volunteers for the BisMan Community Food Co-op. “We liked the idea of supporting a member-owned grocery store that would provide local and healthy foods,” Barnhart says.

Barnhart was recently elected to serve on the food co-op’s board. He wants people interested in supporting the food co-op to understand they will have a voice. “As a member-owner you’ll be able to vote on board directors, bylaws and resolutions that will affect the way the co-op is run.  You can even attend the annual meetings, just like you would with your electric co-op,” Barnhart says.

The co-op is still looking to raise more capital and gain more members before they can open a retail store. “We currently have just over 350 members,” Barnhart says. “At 600 members we will push forward for the rest of the funding and try to get the doors open.”

Interested in becoming a member-owner? Membership investment fee is $200. Basin Electric will pay $50 of any employee’s membership to the food co-op. Employees can find more information on that at Inside Basin.


  1. I am a gardener…by becoming a member, could I provide fruits/vegetables to the co-op?

  2. Becoming a member doesn’t necessarily mean you can sell your produce to the co-op. The Board of Directors is currently forming a committee to seek out local vendors that are able to supply the retail store when it is open. If you would like to talk further about this, feel free to email us at

    Thanks for you interest!


  1. […] also get a muffin from Humble Cottage Farm, a business owned by former Basin Electric employee and BisMan Community Food Co-op board member, Jared […]

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