Saturday, June 23, 2012

Co-Operatives Fortnight

It's that time of year again when co-ops do some celebrating with events, though this year it is a little muted because the time and money has gone into the UN International Year of Co-Operatives. Everyone will be focused on the big pavilion events in Manchester at the end of October...Co-Operatives United.

This leads into that shortfall, nay a lack of engagement between co-op events and going shopping at your local store. Both operate in different silos. I've discussed this issue over the years with active co-operators without coming to any conclusions. Retail is about attracting customers and stocking the shelves for them. Everything else is extra work for staff, and extra reading for the customer who isn't particularly interested. Now Fairtrade Fortnight works quite well. You can display the produce, and have special offers. The effort is reflected in sales. When there is a less tangible issue with no purchases required - then what? How many people know about The Co-op Group's campaign against oil tar sands?

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