Keeping Your Co-op Healthy

Happy New Year, everyone! Menomonie Market Food Co-op is kicking off 2022 with an emphasis on your health and wellness. Sure, we know we have the best food around, but our stores also carry a wide array of supplements and healthcare products to keep your engine tuned. And if your spirit needs a pick-me-up, our friendly staff always brings a smile to my face, as well as the good vibes and conversation with fellow owners and patrons.

The ability of both our locations to provide for our physical needs depends upon the health and wellness of our cooperative. Overseeing the wellness of our co-op starts with the board of directors, your elected representatives, and ripples down through our general manager and staff, third-party oversight, and ultimately our owners. We all have a role to play.

The board spends a fair amount of time monitoring our quarterly financials and reviewing monthly sales reports. With two locations, our New Market Tax Credit financing unwinding from the Menomonie expansion, and the necessity of new capital to expand our Eau Claire location, our financing is likely to remain complex for quite some time. To this end, I have the utmost confidence in our general manager and finance manager as well as the comfort of having some pretty sharp folks on the board.

Menomonie Market also obtains an independent financial audit every year, and it has the added benefit of financial oversight from National Co+op Grocers, a cooperative of cooperatives of which we are a part. Just like bundling up with layers keeps you warm and well, layers of financial oversight help keep our co-op financially well.

Lastly, perhaps the most important role of all rests with our owners. Without our 4,500 owners, we simply wouldn’t be. We rely on our owners for their patronage, their commitment, their engagement, and their friendship. So keep shopping, stay engaged, and keep asking questions. Your co-op needs you.

It’s already shaping up to be an interesting new year, with exciting changes, great local food, and accomplishments at all levels. No doubt we’ll encounter our share of challenges along the way, but together we can meet those challenges head on. Thank you, everyone, for making Menomonie Market Food Co-op a bright shining star in the new year. Be well!

This article was originally published in the January/February 2022 issue of our bi-monthly newsletter, The Morsel. If you’d like to read more stories like this one and stay up to date on the latest co-op news and events, pick up a print copy in-store on your next grocery run or find more news on our website here.

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