A Look Back: The Co-op's Achievements in 2012

Friday, 30 November 2012 13:44

By Kristie Snyder,

GreenLeaf Editor

gs-fb-sunflowers2012 brought some big changes to the Co-op, and no doubt 2013 will see more. Before we look ahead, though, let's look back at some of our accomplishments over the past year. 

In 2012, Co-op members spoke out against fracking with 1,170 letters on the topic delivered to Governor Cuomo. We started an Ombuds Program to help those with GreenStar-related concerns get help.

We celebrated 12 Days of Earth Day, and we honored Earth Day throughout the year by increasing the amount of our electricity supplied by renewables and by coming up with additional ways to reduce our waste.

We worked even harder to support diversity and inclusion in our staff and customer base, and we reached out to support Food Justice in the community as a whole. We donated thousands of dollars to local and nationwide organizations, and we sent representatives from GreenStar (sometimes dressed as giant bananas!) to dozens of community events and gatherings. We invited the community to join us for member meetings, special concerts, ice-cream socials, and our annual Kids' Halloween Party.

Read more: A Look Back: The Co-op's Achievements in 2012


Vote for Your Principles!

Thursday, 01 November 2012 14:29

Voting has ended. The Patronage Dividend measure failed to pass. The Collegetown Crossing store measure passed.

12-12 Voting_Results_CSS_Web

It would be a very strange thing if Six Nations ... should be capable of forming a Scheme for such an Union and be able to execute it in such a manner, as that it has subsisted Ages, and appears indissoluble, and yet a like Union should be impracticable for ten or a dozen English colonies.

— Benjamin Franklin, 1751

By Joe Romano, 

Marketing Manager

This month, GreenStar members are being asked to vote on important issues: whether or not we expand our mission to a Collegetown location, and whether or not to adopt a Patronage Dividend system as the method through which we financially participate in our co-op.

At the same time, there are national and local elections, the most obvious being the race for the presidency, but also local elections to choose representatives and officials and to decide on local referendums and propositions.

This is a great privilege and a great responsibility, because as active participants in these decisions, we hold in our hands our fate, the fate of our co-op, and even the fate of our nation. This has not been the case in most places and at most times in history. It isn't true in many nations today. And it isn't true at any other stores you shop at, except of course for other co-ops. But how did everything get so participatory? Where did Americans come up with the idea of democracy? The answer is beneath your feet. The first participatory democracy in America sprung up in the very place we inhabit today.

Read more: Vote for Your Principles!

Patronage Dividends? Membership will decide in November

Friday, 21 September 2012 14:07

invest reinvest

Patronage Dividend Info Sheet 

As GreenStar member-owners we will soon vote yes or no on a proposal to change our financial relationship with the Co-op.

This proposal would introduce a patronage dividend system to replace the 2% discount that every member receives at the register. The aim of the proposal is to help the co-op increase equity to support expansion projects.


Want to know more?  Read the Proposal

Patronage Dividend PRO Statement

Patronage Dividend – Preparing GreenStar for a Strong
and Exciting Future 

By Alexis Alexander, 
Membership Manager

What an exciting time for GreenStar! We're an extremely successful natural foods cooperative with an outstanding reputation in our local community and beyond. Our success is directly attributable to all of us, the dedicated member-owners supporting GreenStar through our capital contributions, patronage and commitment.


Patronage Dividend CON Statement 

Why I Don't Support
the Patronage
Dividend Proposal 

By Dan Hoffman, 
Council Member

NOTE: This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of other members of the Council.

Four years ago, GreenStar's Council asked members to approve Bylaws amendments that would have replaced the 2% discount all members receive at the register with a "patronage dividend" system. The proposal didn't receive the required two-thirds approval, so it failed. I opposed this proposal in 2008, and remain unconvinced that it's the right approach for GreenStar, now.



Financial Background of
Patronage Dividends

By Joe Marraffino, Finance Manager 

If the cooperative is healthy and growing, why does it need more equity? 

GreenStar has experienced significant growth in the past several years. We measure that growth in several ways, but one telling way is sales per square foot. Essentially this is the speed at which we have to restock the shelves (from a worker's perspective), or the number of people elbowing in to reach adjacent jars simultaneously (from a shopper's perspective).



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