A defining characteristic of Roanoke Natural Foods Co-op is that any shopper can become an owner. This enables the store to directly meet the needs of its owners, as the Co-op is run by a democratically elected Board of Directors. Because we are the owners of our store, we can quickly and effectively enact the policies that make the most sense for our shoppers and our community.
Though you do not need to be an owner in order to shop at the Co-op, many shoppers – more than 2,000 of them – have chosen to invest in the Co-op by purchasing a share.
When you buy a share in the Co-op, you are entitled to:
- Vote in Co-op elections
- Run for the Board of Directors
- Be eligible for an annual rebate check
- Savings through certain deals only available to owners, like our monthly 10% Off Days.
At the end of each profitable year, the democratically elected Board of Directors will determine how much of the annual profits the Co-op can rebate to its owners. Each owner’s rebate will be a percentage of his or her annual Co-op purchases.
When you become an owner of the Co-op, you are given an ownership card that is swiped each time you shop. This will enable the Co-op to maintain accurate totals so that your rebate check is a correct reflection of your purchases.
Becoming an Owner
Anyone is welcome to join the Co-op as an owner.
“Ownership” means owning a share in the Co-op, which includes our two retail locations on Grandin Road and Downtown Roanoke. Each owner is entitled to one vote in Co-op elections. Most “regular” corporations operate differently: he or she who possesses the most shares possesses the most votes.
Each share costs $25. Every owner is required to purchase 8 shares within 8 years, purchasing at least one share per year. Shares are fully refundable should an owner choose to leave the Co-op.
The process of becoming an owner is a simple one: stop by the store and fill out an application today.
You can also download the PDF and print it off!
Do I have to be an owner to shop at the Co-op?
No. Anyone can shop at the Co-op, and all shoppers receive our monthly sale prices. (Click here for Storewide Sales.)
What are the benefits of becoming an owner?
Becoming an owner of the Co-op makes you eligible to: vote in Co-op elections, run for the Board of Directors, receive a patronage rebate at the end of each profitable fiscal year, and receive savings through Owner Basics buys.
Becoming an owner of the Co-op also benefits our community. The stronger our ownership base and involvement is, the more we can be an active force in our community for the causes we advocate: healthy food choices, local commerce, and the responsible management of our environmental resources.
How do I become a Co-op owner?
To become an owner of the Co-op, you fill out an application and purchase a share in the cooperative. This share is an investment in the capital of the Co-op, and is refundable to you should you choose to leave the organization.
After I purchase my first share, when do I purchase my next share?
Every owner is required to purchase at least one share per year until he or she reaches 8 shares. Once 8 shares are purchased, an owner is full vested. Owners are asked to purchase their next share in the month of January to help us get an accurate, speedy count on the owners who are in “Good Standing”. Patronage Rebates, which are issued for profitable years, are only issued to those owners who in “Good Standing” with the Co-op.