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P6 - Cooperative Trade Movement
What is Principle Six (P6) Cooperative Trade Movement?
The Principle Six (P6) Cooperative Trade Movement exemplifies just and equitable trade relationships between farmers, producers, retailers and consumers rooted in cooperative principles and values. P6 is the symbol of a growing consumer-supported food economy recognizing product grown or produced locally, or internationally by small farmers/producers, and cooperatives.
That sounds Great! What does it mean?
Grocery Cooperatives like Eastside Food Co-op are guided by seven principles called the Rochdale Principles or the International Cooperative Principles.
|International Cooperative Principles|
|1. Voluntary and Open Membership|
|2. Democratic Member Control|
|3. Member Economic Participation|
|4. Autonomy and Independence|
|5. Education, Training, and Information|
|6. Co-operation Among Cooperatives|
|7. Concern for Community|
Principle Six is Cooperation Among Cooperatives, an agreement that cooperative institutions, just like the members that compose those institutions, are stronger when they work together.
P6 - Cooperative Trade Movement, leverages the economic strength of co-op members by highlighting the Cooperative, Small scale, and Local producers on our shelves. Each time you choose to buy P6, you support a food system that emphasizes people and sustainable production, a food system that reflects your ideals. By mutually investing in the producers who meet our highest values, we can create a new market demand: An Equitable Food Economy - From Farm to Fork!
A Principle Six Food Chain.
Positively 3rd Street Bakery, a worker-owned cooperative bakery in Duluth, strives to source ingredients from Small, Local businesses. Choosing to buy Postively 3rd Street Bakery bread sets off a chain reaction: your dollars support the Eastside Food Co-op and Positively 3rd Street Bakery who then invests in small businesses who then pay small producers. You are investing in a food chain that reflects cooperative production, from farm to fork!
|P6 Producers||P6 News & Events||P6 Recipes|
Questions or Comments? E-mail: P6@eastsidefood.coop
What is a P6 company?
At Eastside Food Co-op, a P6 company meets two requirements:
(1) All P6 companies must meet two of three criteria:
- Small Producers
(2) All P6 companies are developing a more equitable food system for all by striving to source products and ingredients from:
Small, independent growers and producers
- Producer cooperatives
- Local and regional producers
Read about EFC Principle Six companies here
Local refers to a company in Minnesota or within 200 miles of Minneapolis. (This definition differs from the Twin Cities Co-op's five-state region "Local." As such, some companies that are Local will not meet the the P6 "Local" requirement. Eastside will continue to mark those products with our local shelf tags.)
Small refers to a company that (1) is independently owned and operated, (2) the owner or CEO is the primary communicator
Cooperative / Non-profit is defined by the structure of the company. At Eastside we are focusing on the intent of the business or organization, rather than a specific business structure. As such, some ESOPs, Social Ventures, or other alternative business models may qualify.
Grocery cooperatives and their members have long been instrumental in shaping and advancing the organic and sustainable food movement. Through our dedication, a growing number of consumers are paying attention to from where and whom their foods come. Eastside Food Co-op continues to grow because of the many people who want to invest in a food system that supports small farmers, cooperative producers, and a more equitable food system.
But with success we've found new challenges. As large-scale producers see the profitability in co-op-driven initiatives, they adopt our campaigns while watering down the ideals. This has turned "organic," "local," and "fair trade," into marketing ruses that leave good intentioned consumers feeling deceived and disenfranchised, not knowing what initiatives, labels and brands they should trust.
Small scale producers feel the pain as well. Competing against heavily financed “green” marketing campaigns makes it incredibly difficult to distinguish themselves on grocery shelves. Consolidation in our food industry is bound to continue if we do not find a way to actively seek out and support small, independent producers.
It is time to once again join together with our allies in a renewed commitment to building a solidarity economy that reflects and promotes the interests of consumers and small producers, locally and internationally. To build that economy, we must be informed. We understand that our members have busy lives and respect that you want EFC to help keep you informed about the challenges facing our food system. So Eastside chose to help, by researching our companies and highlighting those that reflect our highest ideals.
As consumers, we are the most powerful link in the economy. Every dollar we spend can be a vote for social justice, for sustainable agriculture, for independent producers, and for the belief that together we accomplish more.
P6 Members Around the World
Eastside Food Co-op, Minneapolis, MN
Seward Co-op, Minneapolis, MN
Davis Food Co-op, Davis, CA
The Merc, Lawrence, KS
Willy Street Co-op, Madison, WI
Bloomingfoods Co-op, Bloomington, IN
Viroqua Food Co-op, Viroqua, WI
Weavers Way Co-op, Philadelphia, PA
Equal Exchange, West Bridgewater, MA