At the end of August, your Co-op began to mail out Patronage Refund checks to our member-owners. Patronage dividends are a traditional way for co-ops to share profits back with the members. As member-owners of this Co-op, you also own the profits, and a patronage dividend system allows us to share and reinvest those profits to benefit our Co-op community.
The Board and Management are excited to issue patronage refunds again this year, our 8th year in a row since members voted to start a patronage dividend system. This year, the total patronage amount is $628,781. The Co-op is retaining 35% and returning 65% to you. The amount retained in the Co-op belongs to the member-owners as a group. It becomes part of what we own together. This year we expect to spend approximately $200,000 on improving the roof of our Co-op’s administrative building and replacing our oldest equipment including cash registers, kitchen range and back-room shelving.
How does this year’s refund compare to prior years’ patronage refund checks?
This will be our biggest patronage refund in the history of the Co-op. Below are the previous refund amounts going back to 2020.
How big of a check can you expect?
Since patronage refunds are based on how much a person spent at the Co-op during the previous fiscal year (April 2022 – March 2023), every member-owner’s check will vary. This year the refund will work out to about a 2.2% refund on what you spent last year. Here are a couple of examples:
Jack’s average weekly purchase is $50/week = $2,600/year
- Jack’s patronage refund check will be $58 which is about 2.2% of their total purchases for the year.
Jane’s average weekly purchase is $100/week = $5,200/year
- Jane’s patronage refund check will be $116 which is about 2.2% of their total purchases for the year.
Does everyone get a check?
Unfortunately, not everyone will get a check. If a refund check is below $5, the cost of issuing the check exceeds the refund amount. In this instance, the Co-op will not issue a check and instead donate all checks under $5 to our local food shelves HOPE and CVOEO. This year a total of 1,205 checks will be donated totaling $2,756.
For more information about how our patronage refund system works, click here.
Please be sure to cash your check within 90 days. Please note that if you do not cash or deposit your check within 90 days, the check will become void, and the Co-op will donate the amount to our two local food shelves, HOPE and CVOEO.