From what I know...<br>
it's when a bunch of families get together and purchase bulk organic/natural foods. Sometimes there is so much being purchased that people open a small storefront. Usually you are asked to help unload when the trucks deliver or to sort through things.<br>
There used to be a company that had a website where you could put in your location and they would list local coops or info on starting your own. I believe the company was something like New England Food Coop but I know that United Natural Foods inc. bought them out and that some things changed. Perhaps they have some info on their website.<br><br>
Hope this helps. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
See if this helps.<br><a href="http://www.coopdirectory.org/" target="_blank">http://www.coopdirectory.org/</a><br><br>
The directory seemed pretty thorough. It listed all the ones in my area that I know of (with the exception of one very new not yet open one). The first page seems to answer lots of questions about coops too!
I think purpledragon is only for NJ? Not sure. I just joined one in Warwick, which is just up the street from us. You get a catalog in the mail each month, with case prices and sale items and then you place the order through a coordinator (usually the person who started the coop) and then once a month a truck goes to either the coordinators house, or some other place (this one has pick up at a local UU) and everyone takes what is theirs and goes home..... Nice and easy, less money, more community, and less OH MY GOD I HAVE TO TAKE TWO KIDS TO THE OVERLY CROWDED WHOLE FOODS AGAIN!!!
Here is the link to the United Foods Coop:<br><br><a href="http://www.unitedbuyingclubs.com/" target="_blank">http://www.unitedbuyingclubs.com/</a><br><br>
There is a list of local coops, and then you email them for the contact info. I belong to one based in Framingham. Each person has a job to do, some requiring you to meet the truck, others you can do from home. I really onlyu order things that are on sale, because most things are cheaper at Whole Foods otherwise. BUT I can't live without the grass fed beef and the veggie fed free range chicken. It is to DIE for!<br><br>
Ok, so this is a wierd co-op. But it's fun, and the food is great. IT's only available in some parts of teh states. (I'll try to find a link to another thread where folks searched out all the available chapters.)<br><br>
ANyway, in New England, it's called <a href="http://www.servenewengland.org" target="_blank">http://www.servenewengland.org</a><br><br>
Most co-ops require you to give some time to the co-op in return for no overhead costs. THe members take the orders, call tehm in, meet the delivery truck, etc. Many things are bougyht in bulk and split into smaller sizes by the members.<br><br>
Serve is different becauseit only requires you to give two hours per 'share' to the community. Babysitting for a neighbor, volunteering in the schools, atthe elderly housing project, doing someones grocery shopping. It can't be a relative that you do for, though.<br><br>
THen you pay, about $20.00 per share. YOu don't know exactly what you're getting til you pick up, but you have a good idea. Each area is different but most of NE gets their stuff from the same warehouse, same orders. THE steaks are incredible! THe fruit is super fresh, you always get lots of fruit, meat, veggies. The package is worth about $35. I sometimes buy 4 in a month and we freeze a bunch of meat. They have meats I wouldn't buy. Honey mustard marinated chicken, or teriyaki beef strips, but it's always good quality and I love having some of those quick choices available.<br><br>
Anyway,, I'll look for those other links. Have fun! I love a good deal.
since my last relpy I have joined a local coop from united food buying,i love it.it's a great time when we get together for breakdown etc.the kids all play and potter around put other peoples stuff in baskets/coolers.we can get everything,dairy,homeopathic,dry goods,you name it.if you go to their website you can find one in your area.i save oodles of money through mine.<br>
Found the thread! Lots of links to lots of co-ops, mostly non-profit, through-out the country.<br><br>
For those in New England, I just can't recommend the steaks at <a href="http:///www.Servenewengland.org" target="_blank">http:///www.Servenewengland.org</a> highly enough