What Is a Co-op?

Co-ops operate for the benefit of their communities.

The specific goals of a cooperative are determined by its members, but all cooperatives adhere to the principles of cooperation that are based on practices of the first successful consumer cooperative in Rochdale, England (founded in 1844).

Co-ops are:

– Voluntarily owned and governed by the owners
– Democratically governed (one-owner, one-vote)
– Businesses, not clubs or associations
– Required to adhere to internationally recognized principles
– Committed to education, training and community health

The overall goal of the cooperative movement is to create organizations that serve the needs of the people who use them.

Cooperative businesses provide goods and services in a way that keeps community resources in the community.