October is National Co-op Month Co-ops are a powerful business model that empower people to create institutions that meet their needs, build their communities by creating good in our world. They’re all around us, in the form of producers, credit unions, farmer co-ops. A few favorite cooperative friends:

Alaffia’s workforce is a women’s shea butter cooperative in Togo, West Africa that offers employment opportunity to women while supporting maternal medical care AND providing bicycles for local children to travel to school. Your bottle of shampoo never did so much good!

Blue Diamond ia an almond co-op! Yup, businesses big and small know the benefits of teaming up. Blue Diamond is a farmer co-op of over 3,000 almond farmers. Working together means fair, reliable income for growers and great products and prices for customers (almond milk! crackers! snacks!).

Cabot is a New England dairy farmer cooperative. Cabot is committed to sustainability, family farms, and working together to create fair prices for their owners and a great product for their customers (that’s us!). Come meet a Cabot farmer at the co-op Saturday from 11-5 and get a taste of cheesy goodness.

Gro-op is a local Buffalo worker co-op with big heart and beautiful crops, including your co-op’s fresh basil. The vertical farm grows hydroponic greens and herbs and also raises tilapia, which help to fertilize the plants.

Equal Exchange is a worker cooperative that sources delicious Fair Trade goods from farmer co-ops around the world!

Credit Unions are co-ops too! Great Erie Federal Credit Union is right here is East Aurora next to the EACM. Banking with a credit union keeps your dollars local, just like George Bailey’s ol’ Building and Loan.

You make it possible to celebrate cooperatives every day in WNY.

Ready to join a great co-op that supports your local community? Learn more about ownership here.