Fedco Launches Consumer Membership Drive
(If you'd like to become
a member, please download our
membership form and mail it to us with your membership deposit.
In 1985 we organized Fedco as a hybrid consumer/worker cooperative.
Even though consumers share 60% of the cooperative’s profits each
year, we have never campaigned to attract consumer members or required
them to pay meaningful equity. This reluctance was mostly a matter of
timing: in 1985, both in Massachusetts and Maine, food co-op warehouses
had suffered major financial reverses that left them unable to return
their members’ equity.
Since then, Fedco has enjoyed steady growth. Sales have increased every
single year, and each year without exception our cooperative has run in
the black. In 2010-2011 we filled more than 33,000 orders, with orders
exceeding $4 million for the first time in our history. We have never
been financially stronger.
In February 2011, with Fedco Trees having outgrown the basement
in our converted chicken barn warehouse and Moose Tubers way short
of sufficient space in the facility we built for it and OGS a scant
dozen years ago, we purchased an additional warehouse building down
the hill, less than a mile from our present facilities, and next
to Interstate 95. In 2012 Fedco Trees and our office moved into
the new space so that all our operations are in close proximity,
Moose Tubers is using the vacated basement for potatoes and we held
our annual spring Tree Sale down the hill where we now have more
space to display our products and twice the parking capacity.
With the renewed interest in gardening, farming and local food, and
our continued emphasis on meeting the needs of our customers and maintaining
efficient operations, we believe our future is bright. What better time
to launch our first consumer membership drive?
We aim to attract enough consumer members over the next few years, members
who will have a real financial stake in the cooperative, to help us finance
the estimated $600,000 cost of our new acquisition.
We are asking for a $100 membership equity (if this would be a hardship,
there is a $25 low-income option), refundable at any time upon request.
Please note that membership is by household (only one membership per household
please) or by farm or organization.
Members will receive several benefits including a 1% discount on all
orders from all our divisions, an invitation to our Annual Meeting each
September, the opportunity to vote on any proposed bylaw changes, and
to vote for and serve on our Board of Directors. Each year some divisions
will offer a few varieties that we know will be in very short supply only
to members on a first-come, first-served basis. Other benefits are still
Join as an member-owner of one of the most successful and enduring cooperatives
to come out of the new wave.
President, Fedco Seeds, Inc.
If you'd like to become a member, please download
our membership form and mail it to us with your membership deposit.