Here are some answers to common questions we get at the Co-op.
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What is a food co-op?
A cooperative (co-op) grocery store is a full-service grocery store owned by its members or equity shareholders. Profits are reinvested in the Co-op and/or returned to the members as patronage rebates during profitable years.
How is Co-opportunity different than a regular grocery store?
Our Co-op is owned by the members we serve. Many of which are our employees. Currently, we are owned by over 15,000 families in our community. In addition to being democratically governed, we also have a triple bottom line of people, planet and profit.
Do I have to be a member to shop at Co-opportunity?
Member or not, everyone is welcome to shop at the Co-op. Our stores have all you need for a one-stop shopping experience. Once you’ve discovered the benefits of shopping at the Co-op, we’d love your additional support as a member.
If you don’t need to be a member to shop at the Co-op, then why join?
While the Co-op is open to everyone, there are definitely benefits to becoming a member. Monthly Owner Extra deals, 10% off one day of your choice each month, and C.O.R.E points that you earn with every purchase are just some of the saving perks, but most members value supporting a mission-driven business that puts people and the environment before profit — supporting the local economy, sustainability and equal access to food for all.
Do members have to work part-time or contribute hours?
Not at all. While many co-ops, including ours, were based on a “working-member” model in the 70’s, current California labor laws don’t allow members to help paid staff as volunteers at our stores. But there are plenty of other ways to be involved! We invite you to run for a seat on the Board, apply for a position at one of our stores, participate in our many events and help us spread the word about the Co-op and our mission.
To become a member, do I have to pay an annual fee?
To avoid annual charges and lapsed member benefits we encourage new members to pay their full $200 investment (8 shares) up front. Once 8 shares are purchased you are a member, and part owner of Co-opportunity for life! If the full investment is not within reach at this time, we also offer a 4 year payment plan.
What if I move and don’t use my Co-op membership anymore?
Also unlike membership fees at most other businesses, a Co-opportunity membership is an investment that is refundable. Should you move or change your mind, members can submit a withdrawal request to our membership team requesting a return on your investment.
* Annual investment shares are at risk and withdrawal is subject to Board approval. See membership contract for full details.
How do I get a Co-op in my community?
As part of our Ends to provide easy access to sustainable, healthy food, we’re always looking at ways to expand to other communities. Until then, we have expanded our delivery reach to within 15 miles of each of our locations.