Tuesday, 21 October 2008 13:53
More than 800 million people around the world belong to cooperatives, and at least 100 million of them are employed by co-ops. And more often than you probably realize, co-ops play a vital part of your everyday life.
Consider the cup of coffee and cranberry muffin you recently enjoyed. That premium Sumatra Siborong-Borog coffee was likely purchased from a grower co-op in Indonesia. The flour in the muffin started as wheat from a farmer-owned, grain elevator co-op in the Midwest, and those cranberries might be from Ocean Spray, a producer-owned co-op.
Knowing the source of the foods you eat, the services you employ and the products you purchase are just a few of the benefits of joining a cooperative. As a member, co-ops invite you to take part in the way your favorite grocery store or financial institution is run, and share in any profits. This community approach to business is at the heart of the cooperative philosophy.
By Dan Hoffman,
An unexpected side effect of the recent controversy over a proposed referendum on whether GreenStar should boycott certain goods from Israel has been the sudden end of the Co-op's longstanding boycott of most goods originating in the People's Republic of China. How did that happen and what will it mean for the Co-op?
In 1997, long-time GreenStar member Becca Harber was concerned about China's treatment of Tibet, including human rights violations and denial of independence (lost in...