Amherst Community Co-op will be a worker and consumer owned grocery store that is governed according to democratic and inclusive principles, providing wholesome, affordable, and locally-produced foods that reflect the diversity of our community.
We are currently in the organizing stage of our start-up co-op. At the moment we are raising funds for our feasibility study and financial pro-forma, to be conducted by CDS Consulting Co-op, which will help us determine what size market and what location will make the most sense for our community-owned food co-op.
We incorporated as a Massachusetts Cooperative and launched our membership drive in April of 2014. As we work to increase our membership base, we are continuing our community outreach efforts with the goal of finding out the needs of the very community members our co-op will be serving. It is important that our project be representative of our entire community as we continue our start-up efforts- this way we can be sure that everyone’s needs are met.
We are also looking for motivated, passionate individuals to become a part of our organizing efforts! Our steering committee meets twice a month, and we would love to hear from you if you are interested in becoming involved.
Learn more about our progress by taking a look at our project timeline.
Our Co-op's Principles
- Our food will be wholesome and reflective of the diversity of our community. Products will be locally sourced whenever possible.
- Our food will be accessible by foot, bus, bicycle, or car, and will offer affordable food to members and non-members alike.
- Our store will be run by workers through democratic management.
- We will support the needs of our local and global community by engaging with issues of social, economic, and environmental justice.
- We will be a resource for community development through educational workshops and events.
What is a Hybrid Worker-Consumer Co-operative?
A worker-consumer hybrid co-op is one example of a multi-stakeholder co-op. In this model, workers at the co-op and consumer patrons of the co-op share ownership of the enterprise. For Amherst Community Co-op, this will mean that worker-members and consumer-members will share representation on the Board of Directors, which ensures that the cooperative is staying in line with its mission statement and guiding principles. All members of the Amherst Community Co-op will have the power to elect workers and consumers to the Board of Directors.