Use the filters on the left to narrow your selections by development stage or project. You may select multiple categories and subcategories, but it may get cluttered. Use the Clear Filters button to refresh and start a new filtering. You can also use the Search feature, above.
Wondering if all your hard work will pay off? This feasibility assessment survey will help your board analyze your co-op’s strengths and weaknesses and evaluate the likelihood of future success.
The survey can be done individually by all board members before compiling the results and discussing them as a group. Alternately, the entire board could set aside time to go through the survey as a group and come up with a combined assessment. An outside facilitator or professional co-op adviser can lead your group through the discussion to help ensure that you get the most out of this exercise.
Once you have completed all the questions in the survey, we recommend that you share them with FCI advisers for feedback. It can be difficult to remain objective about your own work and an outside perspective will help ensure that your assessments are valid. We can also recommend ways to address any concerns that arise.
Please let us know if you are using this survey tool!
As a startup food co-op organizing team, you’ve been looking forward to this day for a
long time. Finally, you’ve had your market study done and the results are in! Soon after
receiving them, many startup boards find themselves wondering what they should do
with the data and how to share it with owners. In this overview piece, we’ll talk about
how to get the most out of this big, important milestone you’ve just reached.
A Sources and Uses budget (S&U) is one of the most important business planning tools that a startup co-op will use. The primary purpose of the S&U is to ensure that co-op organizers know how much money will be needed to open their storefront and where that money will come from. As long as your combined capital from all sources equals (or exceeds!) the expenses you will incur to open the store and provide necessary operating capital, you should be able to get a food co-op open. This guide will walk you through all the pieces that make up the budget and explain their importance.
Our comprehensive guide for groups starting a retail food co-op, with steps, case studies, templates, and more for every stage from organizing to implementation. NOTE: This FREE DOWNLOAD will automatically load to your default download site when you click on it.
This is our comprehensive guide for communities who want to start their own retail food co-op. We walk you through all the stages from creating a vision to opening the doors.
PURCHASE A COPY.
Click for free download: The guide to raising member capital for retail food co-ops. Updated March 5, 2017. See the Member Equity Toolbox for planning and starting your ownership recruitment.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has opened its’ doors to working with startup cooperative businesses. This is exciting news as it makes several of the SBA resources available to co-ops now. There remains an obstacle for cooperatives in meeting the requirement of a loan guarantor. Discussions on that front continue between the SBA and cooperative leaders. Learn more here.
The Sources & Uses budget is an essential tool for planning the capital needed to start your co-op. How much will it cost? What expenses do you need to plan for? Where will the money come from? This template is designed to allow you to develop your budget using established benchmarks and averages. Click to Download Template: Template updated March 2018.
From Urban Greens Food Co-opa three part discussion about why, and how, they decided to do a DPO instead of an Owner Loan Campaign.
It’s the question ALL startups ask. It is a tough one potential owners puzzle over. We talk about it on the FAQ page. In this short video, FCI’s Jacqueline Hannah has some super answers. A great tool for startups and their targeted supporters.
This webinar shows you how to use timing, materials, agendas, and other preparation to pull off a great meeting every time.
Excellent video to help startups understand the process of creating a shared vision.
Download this comprehensive guide to using servery to learn about the needs and interest in your community, then check out the survey template you can use for your own survey.
What is a membership/ownership program? How many owners do we need? How do we set our ownership investment level? Learn about the steps needed to start recruiting owners, and how to grow your ownership level. See the Capital Campaign Workbook for owner loan campaigns.
Insights on getting and keeping great volunteers from Bonnie Hudspeth, one of the founders of Monadnock Food Co-op, and member program manager for NFCA.
Marketing and ownership recruitment go hand-in-hand. Use your brand, logo, and materials effectively.
This webinar discusses how to strategize and prioritize your plans to build membership through all three stages of food co-op development.
Webinar that helps boards and teams build structure and accountability.
Download to assist in your 4 in 3 planning. A graphical flowchart for each stage, and an over-sized one for your planning wall.
Dane Meisler of Kapatoes Insurance Services discusses the insurance needs of health food stores and retail food co-ops at all stages—from startup to store opening.
Click to download: Excel Spreadsheet CoCoCOA – Sample Chart of Accounts from CoMetrics
Info you need to evaluate the feasibility of your plans and gather the information you will need to move forward. Does not replace a feasibility study.
If heroes are known by the things they do in pursuit of a noble purpose, then your co-op is definitely a heroic force. Learn frameworks and strategies to super-charge your co-op’s story into a narrative with passion, energy, and a shared sense of purpose within your co-op’s community.
This webinar explains how to right-size your co-op to ensure you serve your community’s needs, create a sustainable income stream, and have a maximum impact on your mission.
From our Branding Time Three series: We have a brand, now how do we use it to grow ownership?
What are market and feasibility studies? When should co-ops have them done? This webinar discusses everything you want to know.
Click to download the PDF. An example of the actual planning and implementation process from a successful start-up
Learn how your co-op can jump start its development with project management. Hear from a project manager who helped her co-op get a successful start, and about the board’s responsibilities as an employer.
Cooperative Grocer Magazine article featuring East Aurora and Bisman food co-ops, by Stuart Reid in Sept-Oct 2016.
Comprehensive set of board policies designed specifically for startup co-ops. Includes suggested board agreements and policies for each stage of organizing, along with committee charters.
Cooperative Grocer Magazine article by Mary Stennes Wilbourn in Nov-Dec 2015..
From organizing to opening the store–practical insights for all stages.
Shows how startups interact with FCI, but also CDS Consulting Co-op, National Co+op Grocers and NCG’s Development Co-op.