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Free Range Food Co-op

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CO-OP OWNERSHIP

A growing number of community members are working together to develop a food co-op in Grand Rapids, Minnesota.

Ownership support is vital to the establishment of the co-op.  Not only does your ownership help to raise funds for the development of the co-op,  it also shows community support when it comes time to approach grantors and lenders.  Please consider becoming a founding owner today.

The cost to join the co-op is $100. This is a one-time fee (no annual renewals) and covers a household of up to 3 adults.  There a number of different payment plans available to help make it affordable to everyone.  Please see the Ownership page and FAQ pages for more details.

You can use the online form to complete your ownership, or you can download an application and mail it to us.  There are a few different payment options on the application, but if you would like a different plan, please let us know and we’ll work with you.

Upon joining, please allow for 7-10 days for your owner card to be mailed to you.


WHAT IS CO-OP OWNERSHIP?

Free Range Food Co-op will be a physical, cooperative grocery store, located in, or around Grand Rapids, Minnesota. The co-op will be open to all shoppers, but our customers have the opportunity to become owners and purchase an equity share in the business. Owners receive certain benefits and exercise their ownership through patronage, democratic elections of the Board of Directors, the option to run for the board, and by maintaining a voice in the co-op's activities.

The cost to become an owner is $100. This is a one time payment, with no additional annual fees. This decision was made by researching surrounding co-ops in Northern Minnesota, and using the most common member-equity share amount. We wanted to be sure to be in line with other co-ops. There are a few different payment options on the application, but if you would like to set up an alternative plan, please let us know and we will be happy to work with you.

WHY SHOULD I BECOME AN OWNER NOW BEFORE THE CO-OP OPENS?

Co-op ownership is not just about benefits to an individual, it's also about what can be done when a community comes together to collectively form a co-op. Your ownership now helps to provide the necessary capital to create the co-op, but it also shows support and strength when we arrive at the point where we apply for loans through lenders, as well as applying for grants. It shows that our community supports the co-op and that it is safer to invest in us because of that community support.

Your ownership now gives us the ability to achieve our end goals. Those ends are in support of:
  • Establishing relationships with local growers and producers
  • Small business and growing the local economy
  • A sustainable local and regional food system
  • Community education about health, wellness, and environmental stewardship
  • Sustainable business practices
  • Community programs as supported by the Co-op owners
  • A stronger emphasis on cooperative principles within our community
While we can't promise exact benefits of ownership until the co-op is open, some common benefits of established co-ops are:
  • Owner appreciation days
  • Discounted bulk buying program
  • Patronage Dividends once the co-op is profitable
  • A vote in the election of the Board of Directors, and the option to run for the board
  • Free or discounted classes on health, wellness, cooking and other topics as determined by co-op members

NEWSLETTER SIGNUP

Would you like to be contacted to serve on a committee, or to help with fundraising?