We are Wisconsin's first co-op brewery!
What is a Co-Op Brewery?
Unlike traditionally owned breweries, the coop maximizes its goods and services to the community through its member-owners. It’s a for profit business like any other, but at the privilege of those who join the brewery! The good news is… anyone can be a member-owner! It’s a democratic system (one member, one vote) and each member-owner has access to the perks we provide.
You may have heard of this business model elsewhere, in certain grocery stores, from the outdoor retail chain REI to the farming industry, but breweries are just starting to organize this way. And why wouldn’t they? Craft beer drinkers know that a few brews are best shared with others, a feeling perfectly suited for a cooperative.
You can learn more about the cooperative principles below.
The Cooperative Principles
1. Voluntary and Open Membership
Cooperatives are voluntary organizations, open to all people able to use its services and willing to accept the responsibilities of membership, without gender, social, racial, political or religious discrimination.
2. Democratic Member Control
Cooperatives are democratic organizations controlled by their members-those who buy the goods or use the services of the cooperative-who actively participate In setting policies and making decisions.
3. Members' Economic Participation
Members contribute equally to, and democratically control, the capital of the cooperative. This benefits members in proportion to the business they conduct with the cooperative rather than on the capital Invested.
4. Autonomy and Independence
Cooperatives are autonomous, self-help organizations controlled by their members. Any agreements with other organizations or external sources of capital ensure democratic control by the members and maintain the cooperative's autonomy.
5. Education, Training and Information
Cooperatives provide education and training for members, elected representatives, managers and employees so they can contribute effectively to the development of their cooperative, and inform the public about the nature and benefits of cooperatives.
6. Cooperation among Cooperatives
Cooperatives serve their members most effectively and strengthen the cooperative movement by working together through local, national, regional and international structures.
7. Concern for Community
While focusing on member needs, cooperatives work for the sustainable development of communities through policies and programs accepted by the members.
Source: The International Cooperative Alliance