Here you will find answers to some frequently asked questions.


Link to our 2020 Annual Meeting Q&A


Frequently Asked Questions

What’s a Food Co-op?

We’re a grocery store owned by our Members. Anyone can shop here and everyone is welcome to join if they choose. We’re locally-owned, but allied with other food co-ops across the country and around the world.

Do you have regular food?

We have everything you’d expect in a grocery store. In most cases, we have both the mainstream version as well as the natural foods version of any given item. Where available, we also have the local version, the bulk version, and the fair trade version! All that plus the pride of Member-Ownership, access to the most thoughtful product selection in town and a great group of fellow cooperators.

Do I have to be a Member to shop?

Everyone, not just Members, can shop here! While you aren’t required to be a Member, owning a piece of the Co-op is a fun and economical way to grow your community. Joining allows you to earn a Patronage Refund in profitable years, and you’ll enjoy many other Member-Only benefits throughout the year. Plus, your Membership shares belong to you; you can cash them out whenever you like. Our only requirement is that you have a California mailing address.

Great! Where do I sign up?

At any register in store. Fill out a short application, pay your initial investment ($10 in shares plus a nonrefundable $5 fee) and you’re in!

Is that it?

You’ll be asked to invest $20 annually in March, until you reach $300 in shares. These amounts are governed by the State of California, set in our Bylaws, and monitored by our trusty Board of Directors. You are eligible to serve on the Board if you’ve been a Member-Owner in good standing for nine months. More info about running for the Board is here.

Anything Else?

We offer classes and events in our Teaching Kitchen and store. Whether you’re deeply involved in the Co-op or quietly buying your groceries, as a Member, you’ll have a direct say in how the Co-op is run. Your Membership will support sustainable food systems, consumer-oriented practices, and the entire international co-operative movement. Sign up for our email lists, and stay cooperative!

Do I have to use my Membership card?

It’s the best way to keep track of your purchases (also known as “patronage”). The Co-op offers Patronage Refund to all Members who are eligible in years when the Board allocates one. It works the same way as a dividend; the more you shop, the greater your investment in your community and the larger your eventual Patronage Refund will be. Membership cards and key chain tags are free.

Are share investments refundable?

Yes. Your investment is your money, and you can have it back if you wish to withdraw your Membership. You may also donate your shares. To withdraw and receive your share money back, send a signed and dated note with your address, stating your desire to withdraw your Membership, to:

Davis Food Co-op
Attn: Membership
620 G Street
Davis, CA 95616-3753

I used to be a Co-op Member, but I haven’t invested. What should I do?

It only takes a $20 investment to put an inactive Membership back in good standing. You can do that at any cash register, at any time. If your name has changed since the time your old Membership was active, we’ll need to know the old name. If you withdrew your Membership, you’ll need to start a new one.