CoFED partners with young people of color from poor and working-class backgrounds to build food and land co-ops.

Kresge Natural Foods Co-op

UC Santa Cruz

Kresge Natural Foods Coop is a not-for-profit student owned and run grocery store and community space. They also sell student crafts and have an amazing lending library. They started as a buying club in the 70s and today, rent a storefront in the Kresge dorms for a subsidized rate from the university. They are independent from the college, but can use meal plan dollars from students. They also take credit and EBT. 

They also have an interesting weighted markup and discount system. They have a lower markup on items that are organic and local than items that are not, as to make those items more encouraged accessible. Because they are volunteer-run, the have tiered discounts based on the hours and commitment students put into the store, but they always give 5% discount to anyone involved in a coop on campus (bike coop, housing coops, etc). Cooperation Amongst the Cooperatives, yo!

They have a team of core worker-members, who have specific roles and must attend all meetings. Non-core worker-members are required to work 1 shift per week and go to 1 meeting per month. New core worker-members are called "New Eggs" and paired with a senioring core member for their first quarter for on-going training. 

Here’s what they have to say: "We are a group of students whose goal is to run a natural foods store through consensus decision-making and group responsibility. We embrace cooperation as our tool for social change. We are not for profit, we are for collective power. As a cooperative business we seek to educate all members of the community, including ourselves. We use our buying power to reflect our ideals regarding ecological, social, and political issues. For this reason, we carry healthy, locally based, cruelty-free, organic products. We focus on products that are good for the Earth, the people who produce them, and the people who consume them. Open to all, we provide a space where good food and revolutionary action meet at the checkout line."

Check out their video: