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123 N. Hill St
South Bend, IN 46617



January 12, 2018

Jacob Titus

Message from the GM: Member Participation

Purple Porch is a mission-driven cooperative business. We seek to increase access to local food, pay a fair wage to producers and employees, and remain transparent about what we do and why we do it; all while ensuring we bring in enough revenue to make PPC economically sustainable. For me it's about balancing our economic, social, and environmental impact so we can remain true to our values, keep our doors open, and plan for the future.

Co-ops need participation from member-owners to meet their goals; that participation can come in many forms. For some, participating means coming in to grab breakfast, lunch, or dinner from our hot bar and salad bar. For others participation looks like stocking up on groceries throughout the week. For some it could mean coming to events we hold, joining the board, or even working in the store. In practice, many member-owners pull a little bit from each category. 

Principle 3 of co-operative business is Member Economic Participation. It's a principle I think we often gloss over, not because members and staff don't understand its importance, but possibly because most of us would prefer to talk about other things like where our food is sourced from. I, too, would prefer to talk about the local food producers we work with, but for the moment I'm going to focus on the elephant in the room.

Purple Porch needs its member-owners and customers to shop in our store. It's not a plea or a demand, just a reality of operating a co-op. I ran some numbers recently and found if we could have 14 more shoppers a day and if each existing shopper along with our new shoppers spent $1.00 more per visit, we would bring in an additional $60,000 in gross profit each year. That would make it easier for us to do everything from paying back member-loans, to offering benefits to employees, to giving back to the community.

We realize we can't carry everything you want, we're a small store with limited resources.  But we do hope we can be your first stop and that you can find many of the things you want and need in your store. And, if we don't have what you are looking for we will do what we can to get it for you.

Here's to a strong 2018 for PPC,
-Myles Robertson, GM


Cooperative Principle 6

P6 is all about cooperation amongst co-operatives. It's always been my favorite co-op principle because it implores us to share knowledge with the folks around the country doing similar work. It means we don't have to reinvent the wheel at every turn. For the past few months we've been working with many Great Lakes co-ops, building relationships, sharing ideas, and in some cases sharing services. In Quarter 4 of 2017 four staff members were able to participate in trainings and seminars thanks to the co-op network we are a part of.
 Board Elections

On Sunday, April 22nd we will hold our Annual All-Member Meeting (please save the date). We're planning for a great turnout. There will be  a State-of-the-Co-op report, you'll hear from our existing Board of Directors, and we'll elect Board members. If you have interest in joining the Board please contact Board President, Nick Licina at 
 95% to Solar

As of today we have raised $19,000 towards the $20,000 project to solarize PPC. Just a few more contributions will push us over the top!

If you would like to contribute or want further detail, please contact General Manager Myles at


Membership Drive

During our Quarter 4 membership drive the staff blew past our goal of 48 new member-owners and brought in 67 new members! To the 67 new members who joined, thank you for supporting Purple Porch and welcome aboard.