Why We're Different

Make a Statement When You Shop Your Co-op

Stephanie Catlett, Former Catalyst Editor

Remember the first time you shopped at New Pioneer: the colorful arrangement of garden-fresh produce greeting you at the door, the rows of fresh-baked artisan bread lining the shelves, the piles of gourmet cheeses and wines beckoning you further in? All of these tasty offerings might be one reason you’ve remained a loyal Co-op shopper, but what else does it mean when you choose to spend your hard-earned wages at a member-owned cooperative grocery store?

You Support Local Farmers – New Pioneer is proud to support our local growers and producers. Last year, we sold over $1.8 million worth of local food from over 125 area businesses. We pride ourselves on paying a fair price for local food – we know it’s worth every penny! When you shop at New Pioneer, you recognize the value of putting your money back into the local economy, and the value of paying a fair price for the products you purchase.

You Support Your Community – New Pioneer is an active member of our community, supporting a wide range of organizations through our generous donations programs. When you shop the Co-op, you promote the continued financial support of organizations like the United Way of Johnson County, the Crisis Center, Table to Table, and Local Foods Connection. In 2011, we donated over $51,000 to organizations in our community.

You Support a Fair & Just Economy
– Paying farmers fairly is an important part of the work we do at New Pioneer to help support a just economy. Our selection of Fair Trade items, including coffee, chocolate, and bath & body care products, is unrivalled. Many of the fair trade businesses we support are cooperatives, just like us! These cooperative partnerships ensure that a part of your purchase of fairly-traded products supports economic and social development in indigenous communities. We also do our best to ensure that local farmers and producers receive a fair price for the products they sell to New Pioneer.

You Support a Living Wage – Unlike most retailers, over 80% of the Co-op’s employees work full-time. We’re proud to pay our employees a living wage, and contribute approximately 80% of the cost of healthcare premiums for a single full-time employee. Plus, your Co-op is locally-operated, with a knowledgeable staff based right here in Iowa City and Coralville, not some corporate office who knows where.

You Own It! – Doesn’t it feel good to know that your voice and your vote count in a democratically-owned and operated business? That’s right, here at New Pi, you have a say in who is elected to the Board of Directors, the governing body of the Co-op. You can vote in member elections, attend Board of Directors meetings, and participate on many levels in the governance of your Co-op.

Vote with Your Dollar – When you purchase locally-grown, fairly traded, and organic products from New Pi, you are voting with your dollar for a better world. Your dollars help encourage the growth of a society where the value of hard work is honored, where sustainable farming methods care for our land and resources, and where food is free from toxic pesticides and contaminates. Your purchase is a vote for good clean food without GMO’s, trans-fats, and unnecessary chemical additives. Each transaction you make at the Co-op helps solidify our valued community partnerships with local growers, suppliers, and producers.