Frequently Asked Questions About the Oshkosh Food Co-op
What is a co-op?
A cooperative is a member-owned and member-controlled business that operates for the mutual benefit of all members (in this case, great local food and a healthy community). Cooperatives around the world look to seven internationally recognized principles to guide them. These are:
- Voluntary and open membership
- Democratic member control
- Member economic participation
- Autonomy and independence
- Education, training and information
- Cooperation among cooperatives
- Concern for community
By adhering to these principles, we stay connected to our member-owners, to our community, and to the global cooperative movement.
Who benefits from the co-op?
A co-op exists primarily for the benefit of its members. Many co-ops also support other parts of the community through various programs and philanthropic activities as part of their commitment to cooperative values and principles.
Why should I join now?
Because the sooner you join, the sooner Oshkosh Food Co-op will open: as a cooperatively owned business, we need YOU to be able to open the doors. Become a founding member and when the store opens, you will know that you were truly one of the ones who made it possible. The sale of founding shares in the co-op will help us build the community support and raise the financial backing necessary to open the store. The names of all founding member-owners will also be prominently displayed in the store to remind us that we are, collectively, the owners of our own food source!
How much is the membership fee?
A full membership share is $180. This is a one-time fee that covers your whole household. There are a variety of payment options available starting at $11. Click here to get more information.
When will the store open?
The short answer is, when you buy a share! Because the capital to open a cooperatively-owned grocery comes from individuals across the community instead of a single private investor or corporation, we rely on member investments (YOU!) to provide the necessary funds to open our store–it is our member-owner equity that will leverage further financing to open the doors. We have a current goal of 1,000 member shares sold, so the best way to accelerate the opening process is to become a member!
Where is the store going to be located?
The Oshkosh Food Co-op will be located in the Oshkosh area. Final location decisions do not happen until we have completed a number of steps to show our lenders and other fiscal agents that we have both strong community and capital support. We know that to be successful, we will need to find a location with good parking and access to public transportation. One of the goals of the Oshkosh Food Co-op is to promote healthy food access for all.
Will only members be able to shop at the store?
The store will be open to the public and anyone will be able to shop there.
I have another question you didn’t answer here. Who can I talk to?
We would love to hear from you! Contact the Oshkosh Food Co-op at firstname.lastname@example.org