Shop Smarter - Minnesota Co-op Guide

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Find a Local Co-op in Minnesota

What is a Co-op?

Minnesota co-ops, also known as cooperatives, are local businesses that are owned and run by the those who shop at them. They're various kinds of co-ops that offer either goods or services and frequently both. A few examples of Minnesota co-ops include:

  • Food Co-ops
  • Marketing Co-ops
  • Service Co-Ops
  • Purchasing Co-ops

Minnesota co-ops benefit the community by promoting the local economy and allowing consumers a voice and direct control over the variety of services and products that are available to purchase. Also, because co-ops cut out the middle man they are able to offer their members lower prices which is a big draw for many consumers.


What is a Minnesota Food Co-op?

Food co-ops are essentially small grocery stores and possibly the most common type of cooperative. They're owned and operated by a group of people in the neighborhood which often includes local farmers. Usually Minnesota food co-ops sell natural and organic foods that are in season. Over the last several years more and more people have come to comprehend the benefits of organic food and the demand has increased. Food co-ops are an excellent option for shoppers that are looking for organic food at cheaper prices.

You can become a member of a food co-op in Minnesota by paying a membership fee which gives you all the benefits and advantages of being a member of the co-op. The membership fee varies depending on the co-op but it will be set low enough allowing its members to recover the fee through the reasonable food prices. Membership in a Minnesota food co-op also enables you to have a say in how the co-op is maintained.

The members of a Minnesota co-op are equal members and make the decisions pertaining to what sorts of food their co-op will carry and sell to the co-op members and the community. This enables everyone to feel like they are contributing equally. It also encourages democracy and community togetherness because members need to come together and combine their resources to be a success.

If you desire organic food and products at a bargain price as well as help your community then you should look into joining your local food co-op. It is a great way to become familiar with members of your community and become interested in helping your community have great food at good prices.


Better Prices on Organic Food and More at Co-ops in Minnesota

As mentioned above, one of the primary features of Minnesota food co-ops are that they help to lower the expense of organic foods and produce. People require proper nutrition to be able to stay healthy. Food co-ops in Minnesota provide many different types of organic food which help promote good nutrition and healthy eating habits in general. This has a ripple effect that leads to other good changes in the community.

If people are healthier then health care costs are lower which helps the economy. Obesity is a huge problem across the state. Many people don't realize how much it affects all of our lives. A growing number of 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 fruit and veggies, this lowers some of the damage that would have been done in order to grow that vegetables and fruits. If people are supporting their local organic farmers more people will have a stake in creating a clean environment which improves standard of living for everyone in the surrounding area.

Community Improvement Though Minnesota Co-ops

Minnesota 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.

Minnesota co-ops help local farmers and merchants because they put focus on buying services and goods 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.