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Considering Establishing a Farming Co-op?

Farming Co-operatives provide a recognised structure for farmers to pool production and / or resources in a way that allows them to work together and achieve better outcomes than what is possible individually. Effectively, the co-op provides economies of scale and economic synergy for its members.

Over the last two years, Farming Together was delivered by Southern Cross University as part of the Australian Government’s plan for a stronger agricultural sector. The program sought to help farmers work together through co-operative and other collaborative business models to take greater ownership along the supply chain, boost their bargaining position and deliver increased returns at the farm gate. During the pilot program, Farming Together interacted with over 28,500 primary producers, provided over $5.5 million in funding to 50 groups and supported over 220 co-ops. We were proud to be part of the pilot by providing expert advice on behalf of the program.

While the Farming Together pilot program has come to an end, there are still resources available to anyone who is interested in setting up a co-op, including Australia’s first online co-op builder tools, which have already been used by over 200 groups, including non-farming co-ops. The Co-op Builder a free step-by-step tool to help farming groups prepare and understand the legal documents required to form a co-operative in Australia. The available resources are as follows:

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