I do think that one of the emerging trends that is coming to community food system work – especially markets – will be worker cooperatives. Take advantage of the excellent peer work that DAWN offers to learn more about this and to assist rural farmers and producers in your area.
Recently, I have worked with US Federation of Worker Cooperatives as a way to further my efforts as a trainer for markets and food systems. Thankfully, the USF0W is willing to share skills and resources from their excellent DAWN network with other sectors. Worker cooperatives differ from marketing cooperatives in that their very definition is about workers being involved in the decision-making in their workplaces. Marketing cooperatives are often a loose confederation of separately owned businesses marketing products or services together. Both types exists within the market movement, and both types need to be understood better so they can be encouraged more.
The article below talks about rural co-ops and their effect on urban job growth. Effective language and one finds some practical language for markets interested in using co-op techniques to encourage real growth, just as urban communities have done by learning from their rural neighbors.