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Monday, November 24, 2014
Saskatchewan

NEW GENERATION CO-OPERATIVES ACT INTRODUCED

Economic and Co-operative Development Minister Janice MacKinnon said

that The New Generation Co-operatives Act being debated in the

legislature will enable new generation co-operatives to be created,

providing producers with a valuable tool to maintain and create

value-added opportunities and jobs in rural Saskatchewan.



New generation co-operatives represent an emerging trend sweeping the

plains regions in Canada and the USA. "New gen" co-ops use the

governance structures of traditional co-ops, such as democratic

control represented by one-member, one-vote. However, this model

typically requires higher levels of equity investment from its

members. Membership is generally limited to those who purchase

delivery rights and each member may have a tied-contract with the

co-operative, stipulating delivery rights and obligations.



These co-operatives add value to raw product through secondary

processing. There is interest in forming such co-ops in emerging

specialty markets such as bison, pasta, wild boar, herbs and spices.

New generation co-ops offer innovative options to process products in

Saskatchewan, creating jobs throughout the province.



"Our government is pursuing a strategy to promote value added

processing while retaining the benefits of that activity in rural

communities," MacKinnon said. "We are introducing this

legislation to build on our co-op model. With their emphasis on

partnership, participation and people, co-ops can be powerful

partners in this strategy."



"Co-operatives are flexible in meeting new needs. In fact,

co-operatives seem to form and thrive the most in times of rapid

change. New generation co-operatives are the most recent example

of co-ops' adaptability and have great potential to create jobs

and opportunities in rural Saskatchewan."



MacKinnon said that co-operatives have been key partners in the

diversification of the Saskatchewan economy over the decades, and

have been in the forefront of innovative technologies, products

and services.



"Co-ops have shaped our province they are part of our social

and economic fabric," MacKinnon said. "They will continue to be

an equally vital part of our future."



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For more information, contact:



Bob Ellis

Economic and Co-operative Development

Regina

Phone: (306) 787-1691
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