Cooperative Principles

Understanding Cooperative Principles: Voluntary Membership and Member Economic Participation

NuWay-K&H Cooperative, we believe in the power of community and the strength of working together. Our cooperative model is built on principles that ensure fairness, inclusivity, and shared responsibility. Two fundamental principles that define who we are and how we operate are voluntary and open membership, and member economic participation.

Voluntary and Open Membership

One of the cornerstones of our cooperative is the principle of voluntary and open membership. This means that anyone who meets our membership criteria and is willing to accept the responsibilities that come with being a member is welcome to join. This inclusivity is essential because it allows us to unite a diverse group of people with a shared goal: to improve their agricultural practices and benefit from shared resources.

At NuWay-K&H Cooperative, we embrace everyone, regardless of gender, social, racial, political, or religious background. By fostering an inclusive environment, we ensure that everyone has the opportunity to participate, contribute, and benefit from our services. This openness not only strengthens our community but also brings a variety of ideas and perspectives that drive innovation and growth.

In FY23 we completed the addition of a third propane storage tank at our Welcome Operations Facility. Having additional storage can allow us to procure more gallons at attractive prices, passing that benefit to you. By investing our profits we are able to offer our members top-of-the-line service with our facilities and equipment. 

Member Economic Participation

Another fundamental principle of the cooperative model is member economic participation. This principle highlights the importance of members contributing equitably to the capital required to operate the cooperative. Unlike traditional businesses, where profits are distributed to external shareholders, a cooperative’s capital is primarily managed as common property.

Members typically receive limited compensation on the capital they invest, ensuring that the focus remains on the collective well-being rather than individual profit. This democratic management of resources ensures that all members have a voice in how the cooperative is run, fostering a sense of ownership and responsibility.

Economic participation also means that members are involved in financial decision-making processes. This includes decisions on investments, allocation of surplus funds, and other financial matters. By participating in these decisions, members help ensure that the cooperative’s operations align with their needs and priorities.

The Benefits of These Principles

The principles of voluntary and open membership and member economic participation are not just theoretical concepts; they have practical benefits for our members. These principles ensure that our cooperative remains responsive to the needs of its members, adaptable to industry and market changes, and focused on long-term sustainability.

By embracing diversity and inclusivity, we tap into a broad range of experiences and insights, making us more resilient and innovative. By ensuring that members have a stake in the cooperative’s financial health, we promote a culture of shared responsibility and mutual support. This helps us provide better services, support local economies, and contribute to the overall well-being of our community

Click Here to Read more about the Seven Principles of Cooperatives

Scroll to Top