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Our Principles

The South Philly Food Co-op is a consumer cooperative: a purchasing organization owned by and operated for the benefit of the people who use it. Cooperatives around the world are unified by the belief that the process of distributing goods and services shouldn’t be controlled by major corporations with the goal of maximizing profit. Instead, they should be owned, controlled, and directed by the consumer to serve his or her economic needs.

All cooperatives (including us!) are guided by the Rochdale Principles, a set of ideals first laid out in 1844 by the Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers, a group of pioneering British craftsman who formed one of the earliest co-ops and are credited with founding the modern cooperative movement. Today, cooperatives around the world operate according to these principles.

As an active member of the cooperative community, we are deeply committed to operating according to these tried and true principles:

Voluntary & Open Membership
Democratic Member Control
Member Economic Participation
Autonomy & Independence
Education, Training & Information
Cooperation among Cooperatives
Concern for Community

Learn more about the cooperative principles as outlined by the International Co-operative Alliance here.