Ownership in the Willy Street Co-op

Willy Street Co-op is different than other grocery stores. A co-op, or cooperative, is a company that is owned by customers who invest in the business. Everyone can shop at the Co-op, but Owners receive extra benefits.

To be an Owner you pay a Fair Share. Your Fair Share is an investment that supports the Co-op. You pay one Fair Share fee to become an Owner. You can be an Owner as long as you like. If you choose to end your Ownership, you can receive a refund for the money you paid for your Fair Share or you may give it to the Co-op to donate to charitable causes.

You can begin shopping as an Owner after your first payment, and you can pick up your Owner card at the Customer Service desk. Please be prepared to show your card or tell the cashier your Owner Number every time you shop.

As a Willy Street Co-op Owner, you can:*​

  1. Receive discounts on products​​
    • Take advantage of Owner Rewards sales and sign up to receive the flyer by email
    • Get 10% off wellness and bodycare items on the first Wednesday of each month (Wellness Wednesday)
    • Receive the sale price on the products featured as part of each week's Meat Sale Thursday
  2. Receive discounts when you buy products in large amounts
  3. Order products that are not normally sold at the Co-op
  4. Receive discounts on in-store cooking classes and presentations
  5. Celebrate with other Owners at the Annual Meeting and Party
  6. Receive the Reader with monthly information, discounts and recipes from the Co-op (in the mail or sign up to receive it by email)
  7. Vote in Willy Street Co-op elections and run for election on the Board of Directors
  8. Get exclusive access to Co-op recipes by request
  9. Share your opinion about Co-op projects and participate on Owner advisory groups
  10. Sign up for the Access Discount Program, if you have a financial need​
  11. Receive a 5% discount on Reader advertising

When Willy Street Co-op makes a profit, the Board of Directors can decide to give a refund, or money back, to its Owners. Your refund depends on how much you shop at the Co-op during the year. If you receive a refund, you will receive a percentage of the profit as store credit. The rest of the profit is invested, or saved, in your name to support the Co-op as it grows.

As an Owner, you support the goals of Willy Street Co-op to:

  • be part of an active community that is financially responsible and cares for the environment.
  • support small, local, and cooperative farms and businesses.
  • be a great place to work, offering employees great pay, health care and retirement benefits, and the opportunity to participate in company decisions.
  • support the community by giving money, or grants, to local nonprofit groups for programs that involve food, nutrition and well-being, sustainable agriculture, cooperative education and social change.

As an Owner of Willy Street Co-op you will join many people in the community to build a local business that is responsible, cares for people in the community and listens to the opinions of its Owners and employees.

*Benefits are limited to Willy Street Co-op Owners only.

Fair Share contract

You can become an Owner as an individual. As an individual, you pay $58, or you can pay $10 each year for 7 years. Both payment options include a $2 administrative fee per payment. If you would like to become an Owner as an individual, you must complete the form below. Only you can use your Owner number and receive the benefits of Ownership.
Two adults living in the same home can share a Household(1) Ownership(2). Household Owners will pay $93, or $15 each year for 7 years. Both payment options include a $2 administrative fee per payment. Both people can use the Owner benefits, enter prize drawings, pick-up tickets to the Annual Meeting & Party and claim patronage refunds when applicable. Only one person can vote on behalf of the Household. If you and another person would like to become an Owner as a Household, you must decide which person will complete this form. The person who is completing this form becomes the Primary on the Owner account and is the only person who can make changes regarding the Ownership. Only the two people and their dependents listed on the account can use the Household Owner number and receive the benefits of Ownership.

1Cooperatives and Non-Profits are entitled to purchase equity ($91/Household) and assume the rights and benefits of Ownership. See Customer Service at either store to sign up. Cooperatives must provide a copy of their Articles of Incorporation, and Non-Profits must provide a copy of their IRS 501c3 determination letter.

2Businesses are not eligible to invest equity and become Owners; however, the Co-op does offer a Business Account which offers limited shopping benefits, such as a discount on pre-ordered cases. See Customer Service at either store to sign up for a Business Account.

Become an Owner!

  1. Decide if you will be an Individual Owner or Household Owner.
  2. Decide if you will pay ($58 or $93) now or if you will pay each year ($10 or $15) for 7 years.*
  3. Complete the Fair Share Contract.
  4. Submit your 1) Fair Share Contract and 2) your Fair Share payment to the Customer Service desk or online.
  5. You can begin shopping as an Owner after your first payment.

* If you have a financial need you can join the Access Discount Program

Individual Ownership

Full payment of $58 today, no more payments ($56 is a full Fair Share + $2 non-refundable  administrative fee*)
*Payment in full saves you up to $12.00 in administrative fees.


Access Discount Program

Owners who have a financial need can apply for the Access Discount Program. With the Access Discount Program you can shop with a 10% discount to buy food and other products at the Co-op.

If you are not an Owner, sign up today! With the Access Discount, Owners:

  • Can pay the Ownership fee (Fair Share) over a longer period of time: $4 every year for an Individual, until you pay a total of $56 OR $7 every year for a Household (two adults living in the same house or apartment), until you pay a total of $91.
  • Shop at the Co-op with a 10% discount.
  • Receive one coupon for a free class every year at enrollment.
  • Receive one free tote bag for each person on your account to carry home your groceries.

The Access Discount is connected to your Owner account. When you checkout, you will tell the cashier your Owner number and the cashier will confirm your name. Both primary and secondary Owners on a Household Ownership account can use the Access Discount.

To apply for the Access Discount program, you can talk with staff at the Customer Service Desk. You must show proof of income (annual income, before taxes, at or below 150% of the Federal Poverty Guideline) or registration in an assistance program (see the qualifiers below). Staff at the Customer Service Desk are happy to answer questions about the Access Discount Program. 

All Owners that participate in the Access Discount program must sign up every year, during the month of March. The Co-op will send a reminder letter to you in February, at the address listed on your account.

Current Qualifiers:

  • QUEST Food Share Program (SNAP): Current grocery receipt AND FoodShare/QUEST Card (SNAP)
  • Medicaid (BadgerCare/Senior Care): Forward Card AND enrollment confirmation letter
  • Special Supplemental Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC): Copies of current vouchers, OR current updated enrollment data OR correspondence from WIC
  • Section 8 Housing Assistance/Community Development Authority (HUD): Verification letter from the property manager OR social worker
  • Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program: Copies of current vouchers
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI): Enrollment letter from the Social Security Administration
  • Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI): Enrollment letter from the Social Security Administration
  • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): Current enrollment statement
  • FairShare CSA Coalition Partner Shares: Current enrollment confirmation letter/email
  • Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program: Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Voucher with Owner name and healthcare provider’s signature
  • HungerCare Food Security Screening: Letter/email from participating organization or agency.
  • Proof annual gross income within last year is at or below 150% of the Federal Poverty Guideline: Answer the questions on the Access Discount Registration Form in store and show verification of your income. 

2017 150% Federal Poverty Guidelines Chart (in effect as of Jan. 27, 2017)

Persons in Family/ Household

2017 Federal Poverty Guideline (Annual)

150% Annual
(Your income must be at or below this number to qualify)

150% Monthly

































Households (families) with more than 8 persons must add $4,180 for each additional person after 8 to the Federal Poverty Guideline