Cooperation Town is a movement of community food co-ops, self organising on streets and estates across the country. There are currently 21 co-ops in our network.
Cooperation Town co-ops are small neighbourhood buying groups, providing their members with free and affordable groceries, sourced in bulk and distributed at a very low price.
Cooperation Town food co-ops are owned by their members and run according to local needs. Members decide collectively on how to organise and are responsible for the day to day running of the co-op.
While each Cooperation Town co-op is independent, the network is designed to share resources and support across the movement.
Our vision is for a food co-op on every street in every town!
What’s the difference between a food co-op and a food bank?
Food co-ops are part of the Cooperative Movement, which means that they follow the seven Cooperative Principles.
Unlike a food bank, where recipients are means tested and have no say in how the service is run, food co-ops are owned by their members, who decide together what to buy and how to run the co-op.
They are not-for-profit groups, set up to meet members’ needs and are controlled by the people who join them. They are based on solidarity, not charity.
While members have to contribute towards the cost of their shopping, food co-ops offer a great value for money.
They are the most affordable – and sociable! – way to get food.
Cooperation Town food co-ops are also not…
– A mutual aid group
– A lunch club
– Free school meals
– A veg box scheme
– An organic, vegan, wholefood buying group
– Meals on wheels
Who we are
The Cooperation Town network is coordinated by a not-for-profit workers cooperative (limited company).
Our core co-op organisers are Katie Higgins, Shiri Shalmy, Fabian Fausten, Fateha McDaniel and William Lim.
The Gospel Oak Living Room organisers are James Robin and Caroline Nalwoga.
Want to organise with us? get in touch here.
Want to support our work? Donate to our fundraiser.
Cooperation Town in the news
Dignity and Choice, a Guardian article about Cooperation Town, January 2023
An article in Independent Labour Publications by Christopher Olewicz from Yorkshire’s Principle 5.
Freedom News published an article about Cooperation Town, our Covid-19 response and our plans going forward.
Novara Media published a piece by Sophie K Rosa about Cooperation Town.
Real Media published a short video about Cooperation Town.
New Politics mentioned us in their article about radical municipalism in the UK.
The New Internationalist listed us as one of nine inspiring food justice projects
And Huck Magazine listed us amongst 20 projects to note in 2020
Cooperation Town is supported by The Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, Camden Council, Enfield Council, Plymouth City Council, Southwark Council, Cooperate Islington, L&Q Foundation, Lankelly Chase and the Danson Foundation, as well as by kind donations from our community.