Shop Smarter - Montana Co-op Guide

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Find a Local Co-op in Montana

What is a Co-op?

Montana co-ops, also called cooperatives, are local companies that are owned and operated by the those who shop at them. They are various kinds of co-ops that offer either products or services and sometimes both. A few examples of Montana co-ops include:

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

Montana co-ops benefit the community by promoting the local economy and allowing customers a voice and direct control over the array of goods and services that are offered to purchase. 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 Montana Food Co-op?

Food co-ops are basically very small grocery stores and possibly the most common kind of cooperative. They're owned and operated by a group of people in the community which usually includes local farmers. Most of the time Montana food co-ops sell all natural foods that are in season. During the last several years more and more people have begun to comprehend the benefits of organic food and the demand has increased. Food co-ops are an excellent selection for shoppers that are looking for organic food at less expensive prices.

You can become a member of a food co-op in Montana 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 on the co-op but it will be set low enough to allow its members to reclaim the price by means of the reasonable food prices. Membership in a Montana food co-op also lets you have a say in how the co-op is managed.

The members of a Montana co-op are equal members and make the decisions concerning what sorts of food their co-op will carry and sell to the co-op members and the community. This permits everyone to feel like they are contributing equally. In addition it 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 as well as assist your community then you need to look into joining your local food co-op. It's a good way to become familiar with members of your community and be involved in helping your community have great food at good prices.

 

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

As pointed out above, one of the biggest benefits of Montana food co-ops are that they help to lower the expense of organic foods and produce. People require proper nutrition in order to remain healthy. Food co-ops in Montana provide many different types of organic food that really help encourage good nutrition and healthy eating habits in general. This has a ripple effect which 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 throughout 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 lessens 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 Montana Co-ops

Montana 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.

Montana 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.