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Producer Cooperatives

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Chapter Summary

Producer cooperatives often receive partial co-funding from philanthropists or banks. During peak periods, many hire additional staff members who do not share in the profits, and frequently have no voting rights. The establishment of producer cooperatives appears to have been motivated by any of five main reasons. Firstly, cooperatives have been a temporary means to pressure the employer or employers to concede during a labor dispute. Secondly, producer cooperatives can be a means of eliminating or averting unemployment. Thirdly, producer cooperatives may be established as a means of abolishing middlemen. Fourthly, producer cooperatives may serve to advance the emancipation of a group suffering from discrimination on the labor market. Finally, producer cooperatives may be intended as a vehicle toward social reform, at the initiative of the workers themselves, or others.

Keywords: free workers; labor market; producer cooperatives; profits; unemployment



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