Participate in YOUR Co-op

By Emile Amarotico, General Manager

Democracy is a pillar of the cooperative structure, which means that co-ops have been designed to provide opportunities for anyone to take part in the process of moving the organization forward. If we think about democracy more broadly than just voting for the board—but by being able to contribute our voices, our talents, knowledge and skills to collectively helping the Co-op create impact, then suddenly, each and every one of us is shaping our co-op at any given moment. We all contribute to helping the Co-op make a real difference in the world!

Our Co-op means many things to many people. Some of us see the Co-op as a wonderful grocery store. Some of us see it as a community hub, while others see the Co-op as a leader in education and upholder of our communal values.

Each of us finds our own connection to the Co-op by way of the value it brings to us.

There are so many ways to participate in “cooperative life”, and when we do, we are keeping the business model strong and the Cooperative Principles in action, whether as a shopper, as an owner, as a staff member, or in some cases as all three!

Our owners create impact in so many ways: not only through voting for and serving on the board, but by providing input and feedback to the Co-op, investing equity and loans, attending classes, and even by enjoying great music with family in the Co-op courtyard.  

Though most owners are shoppers, not all shoppers are owners.

Shoppers create impact by providing the revenue our Co-op needs to do all the great work that it does.

After all, the Co-op sells groceries in order to do good things for its members and our community. Shoppers also make an impact when they buy local by keeping dollars closer to home. Those dollars support staff wages and benefits, fund community donations and sponsorships, and provide the great classes and events so many of us enjoy.

Supporting the Cooperative Movement is done every day by everyone who engages with our Co-op, whether by shopping or merely participating socially. And the impact that we collectively make grows only as our Co-op continues to grow.

More Co-op News

What to do with all this citrus?!

So you grabbed a few too many extra oranges and grapefruits and lemons (and some finger limes, and some satsumas…), and rather than watch them go bad, we want to provide you with some ideas on how to reduce waste. You’ll also get to enjoy citrus in a lot of new ways!

There are many guides and recipes across the internet (like this one by our friends at Grow Forage Cook Ferment), so here are a few ideas to get your creative and citrus juices flowing.

4 Ways to Reduce Your Food Waste

It’s the New Year, our favorite time for goal-setting, making positive resolutions, and shifting our impact. One of the Co-op’s goals is to become a Zero Waste facility. Our staff works to divert as much food waste as we can - and we hope our member-owners will join us in this goal too.

Understanding CBD

The world of CBDs is continuing to grow, adding to our already vast assortment of medicine available, and sometimes adding to the questions we have about it. We asked our Wellness team to answer the five most common questions about CBD here at the Ashland Food Co-op.

How is CBD different from what I might find in a dispensary?

Meet Cooking Class Instructor Charlie Douglass

Many talented local chefs share their expertise in the Co-op Kitchen. Charlie Douglass is no exception. As the former Master Chocolatier at Harry and David, Charlie knows a thing or two about chocolate and candy making. 

Tell us how your love of cooking and food began.

Food for Paradise

As the community turns its attention towards rebuilding, the Ashland Food Co-op is donating $3,000 to the Chico Natural Foods Co-op. This donation will support families in Paradise with nourishing food and essential grocery items.

Meet Cooking Class Instructor Tiazza Rose

From bread baking to Moroccan cooking, many talented local chefs share their expertise in the Co-op Kitchen. We'd like you to meet a few of them. Tiazza Rose has been teaching the Ashland community the art of Moroccan cooking for years. If you haven't taken a class from Tiazza yet, you should. Here's why.


Tell us how your love of cooking and food began.

Give the Gift of Wellness


Finding the perfect gift for a friend or loved one is an art. This winter, we carefully selected these assortments for those who love some good self-care, are working in partnership with their gut health, or for those making efforts to reduce their pain. Each of these gift ideas will help you make your loved ones feel extra special and extra healthful.


We'll cook. You feast.

Spend more time relaxing with friends and family this holiday. Order the Deli’s ready-to-heat and serve Thanksgiving meal without all the fuss. We make everything from scratch and all recipes use the highest quality ingredients.

Choose from three options:

Give the Gift of Good Food

During the month of November, Co-op shoppers can nourish their own families and help fight hunger in the Rogue Valley. We’ve teamed up once again with Smart Chicken® for the Smart Giving Holiday Challenge.

Here’s how it works.

  • For every 10 pounds of Smart Chicken® you purchase from the Meat Department or the Deli, Smart Chicken® will donate one pound of chicken to a local non profit

We're All Turtles

By Dean Williamson, Board of Director

My grandmother loved to talk. Oh, could she talk! And she had one expression that I’ve always really liked. “If you come across a turtle on top of a fence post, you can be pretty sure it didn’t get there by itself.”

The Power of Principle Seven

By Emile Amarotico, General Manager

As we approach the holidays, I’d like to invoke the spirit of the Seventh Cooperative Principle: Concern for Community. The International Cooperative Alliance defines Principle Seven as when “cooperatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through policies approved by their members.”

So how does that work? How does Ashland Food Co-op demonstrate concern for community?

Love Local with the Local Guy

Throughout September, we will be celebrating all things local. And no one loves local or is more local than our Temporary Demo Coordinator, Brighton Litjens. He was basically raised at the Co-op, has a strong passion for local farmers and producers and loves delighting shoppers with delicious samples and great deals. Who better to tell us about loving local than the "Local Guy" himself?

Tell us a bit about yourself.