About Co-operatives

A co-operative is…

…an autonomous association of people or organisations united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly owned and democratically controlled enterprise.

This short video tells you more and this what_is_a_co-op_leaflet is a good introduction.


Co-operatives are based on the values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity and solidarity.

Social Responsibility

Co-operative members believe in the ethical values of honesty, openness, social responsibility and caring for others.

Co-operative principles

Co-operative principles are guidelines by which co-operatives put their values into practice.

  • Voluntary and Open Membership.
  • Democratic Member Control.

The co-operative model is successfully applied in many different ways. We are all familiar with the consumer co-operatives on our shopping streets. Employee owned co-operatives have grown in popularity over the last 25 years or so, and are becoming ever more well known.