Thank You for your interest in the CROPP Co-op Produce Pool. We are currently seeking additional Produce Pool members.
The produce pool is the origin of Organic Valley / CROPP Cooperative, with its roots in pooling production from family farms to collectively access the larger marketplace. Our produce program has matured into a vibrant group of farmers across the United States who proudly produce the nation’s highest-quality organic vegetables. Demand for organic foods is growing each year, with the greatest portion of the organic marketplace in produce.
The produce pool has grown to serve the national marketplace, bringing increased opportunity for growers to participate in our program. Our Organic Valley label brings strong brand recognition and resonates with our reputation for quality and reliability. We are reaching out to growers around the country that can ship directly to our customers as well as Organic Valley distribution centers.
How We Work
Our cooperative structure allows the farmers to have a strong, active ownership in their future. Marketing your farm’s produce through our cooperative allows you to focus on farming, and leave the marketing, sales, billing and collections to us. As a cooperative, members are required to make an equity investment of 5.5 percent of gross sales or a minimum of $250 which is deducted from payments in the first year. Once met, this equity investment is converted to class B stock that pays an 8-percent dividend. Member owners have an active voice at regular pool meetings to engage with your fellow growers and help shape the future of the produce pool, including voting rights for the CROPP Board of Directors and Produce Executive Committee.
We coordinate production plans to meet market demand so that you can make your seasonal field decisions. We provide appropriate packaging that meets or exceeds industry expectations at cost to growers. Our marketing and sales staff has developed strong relationships with buyers and distributors nationwide. We market on a commission basis, relying on clear and frequent communication to move product as quickly as possible from the field to the grocery shelf. Farms must be certified organic by an accredited certification agency.
Grower sign-ups are conducted annually on a seniority basis, matching market demand with regional production. Senior growers have first option to fill production needs. New growers sign-ups are on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The Produce Pool provides guidelines for proper seed varieties, field culture, post-harvest handling, product quality, and average yields.
One of the most attractive elements of our program is that we handle all billing and collections. A “base price” for all commodities has been established to set a guaranteed minimum return for all members. Payments are made twice per month based on deliveries received in good quality. At the end of each season the actual sales prices for all items are compared to their base prices plus freight cost and operating expenses in order to determine whether a return over base is possible. Pooled premium payments are made once per year on those crops which saw a high market value and low credits, ranging from a few cents to a few dollars according to crop profitability. Crops from Southern growing regions are pooled separately to account for market pricing differences compared with Northern regions.
The Organic Valley / CROPP Cooperative Produce Pool is a wonderful opportunity for family farms looking for an organic option. To learn more, contact our Farmer Hotline at 1-888-809-9297.