Find a Local Co-op in Maine
What is a Co-op?
Maine co-ops, also called cooperatives, are local businesses that are owned and managed by the individuals who shop at them. They are many types of co-ops that offer either products or services and sometimes both. A few examples of Maine co-ops include:
- Food Co-ops
- Marketing Co-ops
- Service Co-Ops
- Purchasing Co-ops
Maine co-ops benefit the community by promoting the local economy and giving consumers a voice and direct control over the variety of services and products available to buy. Also, because co-ops eliminate the middle man they are able to offer their members affordable prices which is a big draw for many consumers.
What is a Maine Food Co-op?
Food co-ops are basically small grocery stores and perhaps the most typical type of cooperative. They are owned and managed by a group of people in the community which usually includes local farmers. Most of the time Maine food co-ops sell organic and natural foods which are in season. During the last few years more people have begun to comprehend the benefits of organic food and the demand has increased. Food co-ops are a fantastic selection for shoppers that are looking for organic food at cheaper prices.
You can become a member of a food co-op in Maine by paying a membership fee which gives you all the benefits and features of being a member of the co-op. The membership fee varies depending upon the co-op but it will be set low enough allowing its members to reclaim the price by means of the inexpensive food prices. Membership in a Maine food co-op also lets you have a say in how the co-op is monitored.
The members of a Maine co-op are equal members and make the decisions regarding what sorts of food their co-op will carry and sell to the co-op members and the community. This allows everyone to feel like they are contributing equally. It also promotes democracy and community togetherness because members need to come together and combine their resources to achieve success.
If you need organic food and products at a good price and also assist your community then you need to look into joining your local food co-op. It's a good way to familiarize yourself with members of your community and be involved with helping your community have great food at good prices.
Better Prices on Organic Food and More at Co-ops in Maine
As stated above, one of the greatest advantages of Maine food co-ops are that they help to lower the cost of organic foods and produce. People require proper nutrition in order to remain healthy. Food co-ops in Maine supply many different types of organic food which help promote beneficial nutrition and healthy eating habits in general. This has a ripple effect that leads to other good changes in the community.
If folks are healthier then health care costs are lower which helps the economy. Obesity is a huge problem through the state. Many people don't realize how much it affects all of our lives. More and more children are developing diabetes as younger ages because of poor diets. This eating habits are being passed down generation after generation. Even our national security has suffered because obesity has negatively impacted military recruitment. A food co-op helps to alleviate this problem by offering affordable organic food and products at very reasonable prices. This means that people do not have to turn to junk food in order to save money on their grocery bills.
The environment can also be helped by a food co-op. Many farmers use harmful pesticides and chemicals when they grow their food. These chemicals seep into the soil and eventually get in to the water supply. By growing organic fruits and vegetables, this lowers some of the damage that would have been done in order to grow that fruits and vegetables. If people are supporting their local organic farmers more people will have a stake in creating a clean environment which improves quality of life for everyone in the surrounding area.
Community Improvement Though Maine Co-ops
Maine co-ops help to bring people together. A community is only as strong as its citizens and a co-op is only successful if its members cooperate and work together in order to make their venture thrive. Members have an equal say and must focus on how to build the co-op and help to produce enough products to feed and serve as many people as possible.
Maine co-ops help local farmers and merchants because they put focus on buying goods and services from others in the community. They promote local companies that may have otherwise gone unnoticed. Anyone in the community can usually shop at a co-op even if they are not a member but typically the co-op offers better benefits and discounts to its members because they pay a membership fee. Regardless this means that local farmers and merchants will have more business from not only the co-op members but also everyone in the local community.