P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Cooperatives Achieving together what one cannot do alone A presentation of the Virginia Cooperative Council
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) What is a cooperative? A cooperative is an organization owned and controlled by the people who use it. The primary goal of a cooperative is to meet the needs of its member-owners versus creating returns for its investors.
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Cooperative history Weavers and other craftsmen in Rochdale, England, in 1844 are tired of paying high prices for low quality goods to local (unscrupulous?) shopkeepers –Oatmeal with sand added –Butter weighed with a thumb on the scale
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Created the Rochdale Equitable Pioneers Society to: v Purchase needed goods in bulk: butter, flour, sugar, oatmeal, candles v Open a shop on Toad Lane v Re-sell to themselves at cost plus a small margin v Return any profit to the members at year end, based on the member’s volume of business Cooperative history
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Cooperative principles v Open membership v One member, one vote v Limited return on capital v Operation at cost v Dividends returned to members in proportion to use v Duty to educate
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) v Improve bargaining power v Reduce costs and increase income v Obtain products or services not otherwise attainable v Gain market access or enhance marketing opportunities v Improve produce or service quality Cooperative benefits
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) What did you have for breakfast? –Florida Natural orange juice or Ocean Spray cranberry juice –Welch’s grape jelly, Land O’ Lakes butter Have you had a snack? –Diamond walnuts, Sunmaid raisins, Sunkist oranges Do you shop at a local farm supply co-op? –Southern States, Farmers Cooperatives How cooperatives benefit YOU
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Where do you do your banking? -Farm Credit, Credit Unions How many electrical appliances have you used today? - Electric Cooperatives Do you market milk through a cooperative or drink milk processed by a cooperative? - Dairy Farmers of America, Maryland & Virginia Milk Producers How cooperatives benefit YOU
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) v Nearly 48,000 cooperatives generate more than $120 billion in annual economic activity for about 100 million members…1 in 3 Americans! v 11 million people rely on electric cooperatives for their power v Nearly 570 rural credit unions help their 3.8 million members save more than $18 billion v Cooperatives create more than 250,000 jobs Cooperatives benefit America
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Why should you be a member of a cooperative? v Have a voice…one member, one vote: –Elect board members from the general membership –Serve on the board, which sets the direction for the cooperative v Share in profits of the cooperative: Profits are returned to members as patronage refunds, in proportion to the member’s use of the cooperative
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Why should you do business with a cooperative? v The primary goal of a cooperative is to meet member needs, not make profit for outside investors v Cooperatives emphasize quality products and services and knowledgeable employees v Cooperative business dollars stay in the community v Your friends and neighbors own the business
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) A cooperative is a grassroots organization. It is formed by a group of individuals who identify an unmet need and set out to meet that need. Cooperatives then serve as a competitive yardstick for other businesses.
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Cooperatives truly do together what one cannot do alone.
P.O. Box Richmond, VA (804) Fax: (804) Virginia Cooperative Council USDA Rural Business – Cooperative Service National Council of Farmer Cooperatives National Coop Business Association The mission of the Virginia Cooperative Council is to promote the understanding of farmer and consumer-owned cooperatives in Virginia and their contributions to the economy.