The Floating Bridge Food and Farms Coop seeks to be broadly representative of the agriculture and food community of the greater Brookfield-Randolph Center area. FBFFC was started with 15 founding members who met starting in January 2010 to discuss different ways they could work together to support the idea of local food and farms and related businesses. The decision was made to form a cooperative with the following mission:
- Develop a collective of agricultural businesses as a model of local sustainability;
- Provide visitors with an authentic experience that deepens their appreciation and understanding of a working agricultural community; and
- Provide farm and food-based educational opportunities.
The appropriate legal work was done to form the Cooperative, formalize by-laws and register with the State of Vermont.
The coop offers its members many tangible benefits such as the opportunity to sell their products to the public at the farmers’ markets and holiday shop put on by the Coop each year and to purchase the products and services of other members as well as selling their own within the Coop. Through the coop members can also participate in powerful joint marketing. Additionally, the Coop also offers less tangible benefits such as a sense of community and cooperation and access to a supportive peer-learning network.
In return, members agree to support the overall goals and mission of the Cooperative and support Cooperative functions, events and activities during the year in one or more of the following ways:
- Attending monthly work meetings where decisions about the Coop direction and activities will be made,
- Helping with events,
- Helping with publicity and outreach,
- Helping with phone and email responses, calendar checking, writing for the e-newsletter or blog,
- Helping with fundraising and grant writing,
- Accepting leadership positions,
- Helping with the new member selection process;
And also agree to respond in a timely way to requests for information and updates for the web site and other communication media, pay dues as set by the Board of Directors, and attend the Annual Meeting (and annual “social” event) in order to foster collaboration and cooperation between Coop members.
- Members of Floating Bridge Food and Farms Cooperative will be farms and related businesses in the greater Randolph Center-Brookfield Vermont area that are committed to the Purpose of the Cooperative.
- Members will agree to offer agritourism programs in cooperation with other members and to the mutual benefit of the cooperative.
- Members will agree to have their offerings integrated into agritourism packages offered by the Cooperative and will be accountable to the group for providing these services.
- This in no way limits any Members from providing agritourism services independent of the Cooperative.
- Insurance Coverage – All members must carry liability insurance necessary to cover any and all activities they intend to offer under the auspices of the Cooperative. Advice and review of this requirement will be handled by the Board.
Joining the Coop
If you are interested in joining the Floating Bridge Food and Farms Cooperative, please fill out our Application for Membership and send it to Board Member Dan Childs. After reviewing your application we will arrange a meeting with you in person. New members are admitted once a year (in January) by a majority vote and may be required to pay a buy-in capital contribution as determined by the Board of Directors.