Buy Local Berkeley
Buy Local Berkeley (BLB) is a collaborative of merchant associations and individual small business owners in Berkeley of which the Chamber has been very supportive.
BLB educates local businesses, institutions, and citizen as to the cultural, environmental, community, and economic benefits of shopping at locally owned and operated businesses.
The goal of BLB is to inspire people to shift their spending to Berkeley businesses whenever possible.
Founded in Berkeley in 2007, BLB has a very active Executive Committee, and has a contract with the City of Berkeley to conduct a niche marketing campaign to promote Berkeley’s locally owned, independent businesses. Mark McLeod, Chair of the Chamber’s Committee on Government Affairs, is one of the founding Executive Committee members of Buy Local Berkeley, which has helped the two organizations to be very mutually supportive.
Over its first two years, BLB has gained over 350 members, and is aiming to grow to a membership of 500 businesses before the conclusion of 2009.
Over the past year, sales tax drops have been much smaller in Berkeley than in most surrounding communities such as Oakland and San Francisco. Many attribute this to the vigorous growth of BLB and the way it has contributed to the effort to get local businesses to support each other.