Everyone will be welcome to shop at the South Philly Food Co-op, but there are many benefits to being a member-owner. Member-owners are quite literally owners of our to-be store and will have a voice in which items and services the Co-op will offer. If you aren't a member-owner yet, we invite you to join today, and gift the gift of member-ownership to your friends and neighbors, too!
Benefits of Member-Ownership
Economic: Member-owners invest in our shared future and save money.
- Opening Our Store! your investment leverages the resources we need to open & improve our store
- Shop South Philly: discounts and savings at over 40 other locally-owned, like-minded businesses through our Shop South Philly Program
Per a resolution adopted by our Board of Directors, once our store opens, member-owners will also be entitled to:
- Patronage Refunds: a portion of profits will be distributed back to member-owners, the more you shop, the bigger your refund (refunds are at the board’s discretion and dependent upon the co-op’s financial health)
- Owner Appreciation Days: events featuring seasonal samples, special owner discounts, and more
- Owner Specials: some of our best sales are selected and extended just to member-owners
Democratic: Member-owners have a say.
- Democratic Control: each member household has one share and one vote
- Voting Rights: vote in annual board elections
- Run for the Board: owners may run for a seat on the board
- Education: join us for workshops, classes, and other events
- Training Orientations: info sessions about their co-op and how to participate
- Information: access to the co-op’s Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, Board Level Policy, and special member-only information sessions
- Build Community: work, shop, and have fun at community events
- Community Engagement: we’re here to serve our community’s needs; share your ideas and opinions
- Other Rights and Benefits: read our Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws for further information
Every member-owner household can cast one vote in the annual elections for the Board of Directors. Member-owners who are 18 years of age or older and have been to at least one committee meeting and one general membership meeting are eligible to run for the Board of Directors. In addition, member-owners can help influence the programming and reach of the Co-op through getting involved with one of the committees.
Broader Impact: Member-owners are part of something bigger.
- Good Food: our product selection guidelines emphasize healthful, local, sustainable, and ethically produced products that are good for consumers, workers, and the planet
- Empowering Jobs: we create empowering jobs and other opportunities for local community members
- Positive Change: support food justice and social equity at the co-op and in the food system
- Thriving economies: support local farmers, producers, and other local businesses including co-ops; advance fair-trade practices here and abroad
- Green Practices: we are committed to green practices including minimizing waste through recycling & composting, using green products, and reducing energy use by using LED lighting & more
Your equity investment builds strength in numbers and shows support for our commitment to “using food as a force for good -- at our tables, in our community, and for the planet” South Philly Food Co-op member-owners get together for events and work to advance this mission. By contributing their equity and volunteerism, member-owners help us get closer to our goal of opening a community-owned grocery store.
Terms of Member-Ownership
A “member‐owner” is a person who has monetarily invested in the Co‐op. The primary member‐owner is considered to be the main contact within the “household.” A “household” is a group of persons (including children) residing at the same address who live together as a unit.
Member‐Ownership Equity Cost and Payment Options
The member-ownership equity investment is set at $300 per household. This can be invested in full or paid off in equal monthly installments anywhere from 3 months ($100/month) up to 12 months ($25/month). If you do not have the means to pay $300 over time, you can join as a member-owner with support from our Community Equity Fund here.
Member-owners who are able to contribute their full $300 equity investment upfront are strongly encouraged to do so. The Co-op will send invoices to partially invested member-owners at monthly intervals.
Join online today by making a secure payment through Paypal and filling out your member-owner information. Those who would prefer to pay by check should make them payable to “South Philly Food Co-op” and mail with a printout of your confirmation or a copy of the application to:
South Philly Food Co-op
PO Box 31506
Philadelphia, PA 19147
Member‐owner status will not be granted until the online transaction is completed and verified (or check received) and your signed application is received.
Transfer or Refund of Equity
Memberships are non‐transferable. Should a member-owner choose to terminate their membership, their member share may be redeemed, upon written request, within ninety (90) days after an equivalent amount of funds has been provided by a new or existing member. Redemption of member shares shall be subject to being offset by amounts otherwise owed to the Co-op by the redeeming Shareholding member.
Limit to Member-Owner Investment
Any total capital contribution you make to the Co-op beyond the member-owner equity investment amount ($300) will not be considered equity, but will be handled as a gift donation. Donations are happily and graciously accepted.