Big Hollow abides by the basic business principles of a cooperative, meaning that the members vote on important issues regarding products, expansion, board members, charitable donations, and more. We like to source locally as much as possible. We like to support the causes that are important to our customers and to our community at large.
We’re so much more than a grocery store!
History of Big Hollow
The idea was to create a space in the heart of downtown Laramie that supports local agriculture, provides health and specialty foods at an affordable price, and gives a voice to the local community–long term residents and University students alike.
Why We Love the Cooperative Model
The cooperative business model allows direct community participation in the day–to–day operation of Big Hollow. Members help make decisions about the kinds of products we carry, the vendors from which we purchase these products, and the function of the Co–Op as a whole.
This sense of community involvement is what makes the cooperative model at Big Hollow a perfect fit for the spirit of Laramie, Wyoming. Our beloved little town provides tight–knit community support, and the member–owners from our community help shape and direct the goals and missions of the Co–Op.
We live by the Seven Cooperative Principles:
1. Open and Voluntary Membership
Anyone can be a member at Big Hollow! We welcome everyone who can benefit from a membership (which really is just about everyone…)
2. Democratic Member Control
Members actively participate in making decisions and deciding our policies. We have a board of directors that are elected by the membership, and each member’s vote is equal.
3. Members’ Economic Participation
Our members democratically control our co-op’s capital. It’s allocated towards a variety of different purposes, from growing the Co-op to supporting member-approved causes in our community.
4. Autonomy and Independence
We’re self-sufficient and independent, and proud of it!
5. Education, Training, and Information
We continually look for opportunities to train and educate both our board members and membership as a whole so that we can continue to improve. We also strive to educate and inform our community on the benefits of the Co-op model, as well as how important local foods and goods are.
6. Cooperation Among Cooperatives
When everyone works together, our communities thrive. We want to make Laramie a better place by bringing people together and encouraging collaboration between businesses and individuals alike!
7. Concern for Community
Laramie is our home, and we love it! We are grateful for the support that we receive from our wonderful community on a daily basis, and want to pay it back by strengthening our town and bringing its people together.