A Smart Approach to Sustainability

At our annual meeting this June, the Rutland Area Food Co-op’s board of directors is asking co-op members to vote in favor of transitioning to the Patronage System. Below is a quick overview of what this is and why we believe it will help us become a stronger, more sustainable food cooperative. Want a more detailed explanation? Read the letter from our board over on our blog page.

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Patronage FAQ

  • Will we keep other discounts?
    Yes. The senior discount and supplement discounts will remain, as well as member sales and regular monthly sales.
  • This method seems like it caters to people who spend more money.
    The Patronage Refund is determined by how much a member spends at the Co-op. However, every member receives a refund at the same rate. This is not all that different than our current 2% member discount. For instance, If a member spends $100, they receive a $2 discount. If a member only spends a dollar, they only receive a two-cent discount.
  • How soon will this start?
    At the beginning of our next fiscal year after member approval. If approved at the annual meeting in June 2018, it would go into effect in April 2019.
  • What happens to my current membership?
    Your membership doesn’t change because of the patronage refund system. However, we realize the need to update our membership process and implement more efficient record keeping in order to make this a successful effort.