Cooperation among Food Coops: Park Slope and La Louve

The Park Slope Food Coop (PSFC) spent several years mentoring and consulting with the founders of La Louve Cooperative in Paris, France on the complex process of starting a member-labor Coop. As reported and presented at our November General Meeting, La Louve requested that two PSFC staff members review the operation in person prior to their grand opening on November 14.  The Park Slope Food Coop contributed staff time and expertise during the five working days we were hosted by La Louve. La Louve paid our staff’s travel expenses, and provided free housing in the private homes of La Louve members as well as many meals. When not being fed by La Louve, PSFC staff paid food costs out of their own pockets.

While the vast majority of Park Slope Food Coop staff time and member labor is focused on day-to-day operations, we have a long history of devoting resources to other Coops. We are proud of our many efforts over the years to support the 6th International Principle of Cooperation, Cooperation among Cooperatives: “Cooperatives serve their members most effectively and strengthen the Cooperative movement by working together through national, regional, and international structures.”

La Louve Cooperative is one of the few active Coops successfully replicating the PSFC model of member participation and already has over 5,000 members. The founders of La Louve were inspired to start a food coop while in Brooklyn filming a movie they wrote and directed about the Park Slope Food Coop. The movie, Food Coop, was released in 2016. View the trailer here https://vimeo.com/166388881, or read the film synopsis on IMDb http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5909108/.

Other examples of our efforts to strengthen the cooperative economy include:

  • The PSFC Fund for New Food Coops (approved by the January 2012 PSFC General Meeting) https://www.foodcoop.com/fund
  • PSFC membership in the National Cooperative Grocers (approved by the July 2015 PSFC General Meeting)
  • Support offered to many start-up Food Coops in Brooklyn – Bay Ridge Food Coop, Bushwick Food Coop, Central Brooklyn Food Coop, Greene Hill Food Coop, Lefferts Community Food Coop, Windsor Terrace Food Coop and others – through staff consultation and member labor
  • Staff and member attendance at city-wide and international meetings promoting the Cooperative economy

Please contact the Coop at our main number – 718-622-0560 – with further questions.