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  • What is a Co-op?
    A co-op is a democratically-run enterprise that operates for the benefit of it’s member-owners. See What Is A Co-op for more information.
  • Where will the store be located?
    A lease was signed for our storefront to be located at 416 East 900 South in Salt Lake City, the former Southeast Asian Market. The long term vision is to open numerous stores across Northern Utah. Once the first store is up and successful, we intend to expand to additional locations.
  • When will the store open?
    Because all but the building's framework has been moved, we anticipate assuming the space early 2025 and opening the doors that fall. In the meanwhile, there's lots of other work to accomplish, e.g., building community partnerships, establishing relationships with producers and applying for financial support. All this while continuing to grow member-owner support.
  • Why should I invest in a grocery cooperative when there are so many other options for where to shop?
    The Co-op vision is unique. You will be a co-owner of the store. As such, not only will your voice be heard, it defines the Co-op. You’ll have the right to vote for Board members and on other matters that affect your store. You can be on the Board. In profitable years, you will receive patronage refunds based on how much you shop at the Co-op, returning the profits to you and other Utah residents rather than shareholders spread across the country. Co-ops recycle more money in the local economy; on average about $0.60 of every dollar spent there. We are committed to strengthening Utah’s food economy by helping to build and sustain the local food infrastructure. We will accomplish this by making buying local products a priority and paying fair-trade prices to growers and producers and living wages to our store employees. Additionally, co-ops act as incubators for other new local businesses, further strengthening the local economy.
  • How will prices at the Co-op compare with other grocery stores?
    We don’t know quite yet, but according to Food Co-op Initiative, we can expect to be on par with most other stores. Member-owners will receive patronage refunds in profitable years, lowering the cost to them a bit more. In addition, we can elect to join the National Cooperative Grocers Association, which provides buying power on items we can’t source locally. The Co-op is unique in the grocery store business. Its business model benefits consumers, producers, employees, and the environment. These ideals are costly to uphold. So, if you pay a bit more for a product, know that you are doing good in our community.
  • What are my immediate benefits if I investment today?
    Currently, Business Partners—other locally-owned businesses—provide exclusive discounts to WCM member-owners, anything from 5-10%. You can also run for a seat on the Board or participate in other ways that help guide what the Co-op will be for the community. Free or reduced admission to Co-op events - nutrition classes, socials, special events - are offered occasionally. With additional volunteer support, we can activate a special Member-Owners’ Only web page with recipe exchanges and articles on local foods, and classes on urban farming techniques and other food-related classes.
  • What happens to my investment if the store does not open?
    In the unlikely event that our initiative falls short, and member-owners decide to dissolve the business, all member-owners will receive a pro-rated refund of the capital that remains at the time that decision is made. We do not anticipate that this will happen. It is more likely that the opening date is simply delayed.
  • How much does it cost to join? (Is it a one-time fee?)
    The cost of a Class A ownership share is $300. This is a one-time fee, giving you a voice in the Co-op. A variety of payment plans are available starting as low as $15 per month.
  • What else is required of me as a Member-Owner? Will I be required to work some number of hours at the store?
    Nothing more than your monetary investment is required at this stage. Once the store is open, you will need to shop at least once a year. There are, and will continue to be, volunteer opportunities through which you can help. We are currently not planning on having a work requirement through which you would need to work at the store without pay for some number of hours.
  • Can anyone shop at the Co-op?
    The general public is welcome to shop at the store, but we hope that you share in our vision and decide to invest.
  • Can my whole family shop as members?
    Everyone living in the same household can make purchases on their family member’s account. We hope there’s incentive for each adult to purchase their own ownership.
  • What happens when a person in my household moves away?
    Membership is per household. If you’re member/owner household breaks up, you will need to decide who will retain the membership.
  • Will the Co-op be like a "CSA"?
    A CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) is a farm or farm-supplied business that regularly delivers food to members on a subscription basis. This guarantees customers for the farm and easy access to food for the customer. The Co-op will work more like a conventional market, although we may be supplied by local farms that also operate as CSAs. We are looking into e- shopping with curbside pickup and delivery options.
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