So much is changing so quickly right now, and our co-ops are uniquely positioned to serve our owners and community today, and be practical alternatives to 'business -as-usual' in the future. We don't have a crystal ball to see that future, but we can discuss together how our co-ops can have a larger role and how we can talk about our co-ops as important parts of a better society.
Discussing each principle and value through the lens of racial and economic equity will provide a starting point for promoting a more inclusive and effective movement. This is a resource for boards of directors, management teams, and study groups who especially want to explore the impact of dominate white culture on co-ops, and who want to find a way to create a dialogue to [...]
Sometimes the obvious isn’t so obvious. Just because we have co-op in our name does not mean that people will really understand what that means. The formal definition of a cooperative is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise. But we need to give that meaning life. [...]
Willy Street Co-op Madison, Wisc. Year founded: 1974 Equity investment: $56 single/$91 household + $2 service fee Number of members: 34,000 Number of employees: 420 Number of locations: 3 retails, commissary kitchen, central office Every day food co-ops must make decisions within the context of one of the most intractable dilemmas of the grocery industry. How does the co-op reconcile customer desire for lower [...]
BriarPatch Co-op in Grass Valley, CA has experienced tremendous growth in a short period of time. Chris Maher, GM, shares his philosophy about growth, and how cooperatives must compete in the marketplace. His vision is clear: We lead with values, every time!
Dale Woodbeck, General Manager Lakewinds Food Co-op, Chanhassen, Minnetonka, & Richfield, MN Mr. Woodbeck shares the story of Lakewinds Food Co-op's success fostering a sense of belonging among its stakeholders by way of a branded loan program that has directly helped dozens of small local farmers in the region to thrive. Includes a short but moving video clip of those that have been touched [...]
Sean Doyle, General Manager Seward Community Cooperative, Twin Cities, MN Sean shares his perspective as a St. Mary's Graduate and long-time GM on how to invigorate the co-op culture at your store. In brief: It starts with investing in staff.
E. Kim Coontz, Executive Director California Center for Cooperative Development Davis, CA Kim shares an integrative view of cooperation as she see in her work the overlapping of co-ops in many sectors organizing around the same co-op principles & values. She even shares a co-op song at the end. Careful, it's catchy!'