The Park Slope Food Coop is a member-owned and operated food store—founded in 1973 by a group of committed neighbors looking to make healthy, affordable food available to everyone who wanted it. The Coop provides Brooklyn and beyond with quality food and products while serving as a community center and meeting place for its member-owners. Our member- owners contribute their labor: working together to build trust through cooperation and teamwork and enabling the Coop to keep prices as low as possible within the context of its values and principles. Our member-owners believe in the value, rewards and responsibility of collective labor, action and ownership.
Unlike most cooperatives in the United States, the Park Slope Food Coop requires members to work. PSFC has more than 17,000+ members who work once every four weeks in exchange for a 20 – 40% savings on groceries. Only members may shop at the PSFC, but membership is open to all. The members rely on one another to share the work of running the Coop and of contributing to its success. The benefit of this shared responsibility is two-fold, the most obvious being that with scheduled, reliable member labor the Coop is able to keep its payroll costs down, which translates to low prices. But another equally important reward comes from the satisfaction members receive from working together as a community to build something upon which we can all rely. For the current fiscal year, the PSFC is projecting an annual sales volume of more than 57 million dollars generated wholly by its member-owners.
From the Park Slope Food Coop members’ manual :
” The Park Slope Food Coop is a member-owned and operated food store– an alternative to commercial profit-oriented business. As members, we contribute our labor: working together builds trust through cooperation and teamwork and enables us to keep prices as low as possible within the context of our values and principles. Only members may shop, and we share responsibilities and benefits equally. We strive to be a responsible and ethical employer and neighbor. We are a buying agent for our members and not a selling agent for any industry. We are a part of and support the cooperative movement. We offer a diversity of products with an emphasis on organic, minimally processed and healthful foods. We seek to avoid products that depend on the exploitation of others. We support non-toxic, sustainable agriculture.
We respect the environment. We strive to reduce the impact of our lifestyles on the world we share with other species and future generations. We prefer to buy from local, earth-friendly producers. We recycle. We try to lead by example, educating ourselves and others about health and nutrition, cooperation and the environment.
We are committed to diversity and equality. We oppose discrimination in any form. We strive to make the Coop welcoming and accessible to all and to respect the opinions, needs and concerns of every member. We seek to maximize participation at every level, from policy making to running the store.
We welcome all who respect these values. ”