Many of us at least once encountered the concept of “Consumer Society”. But everyone knows what it is. For most people, joining such a union seems like a rather dubious decision.
Consumer societies (cooperatives) are non-profit organizations established to meet the material needs of their members. It can be anything: food, service, specific item.
The essence of consumer cooperatives is simple. A group that wants to receive a specific item purchases production equipment and contributes to receiving the finished product. The organization’s budget is replenished exclusively at the expense of participants’ shares.
Benefits of Engaging the Consumer Society
All those who frequent such associations are interested in economic gain. Cooperated products will cost much less than similar products that have passed official registration and quality control procedures. In fact, the tax is a commercial concept, and the consumer society does not exhibit products for sale, so it costs less to produce things.
Organizations are not obliged to sell goods, receive all certificates, or deliver all types of checks. The association’s activities are a vicious circle. Society members buy everything they need for production and then receive the goods. Manufactured products are not supplied to stores and do not enter the market. Sometimes members of society not only make cash contributions but also participate in the production process receiving regular salaries.
Popular Cooperative types
In fact, “consumer society” sounds extremely rare, but such organizations are easy to find. The word “collaborative” may be found more often in associations’ advertisements, but in most cases, the type of organization is not indicated at all.
Among familiar consumer organizations highlight housing and cottage building cooperatives. Participants regularly donate a certain amount to buy the area, materials, and labor, and settle in an apartment after the construction of the building.
Credit is also very common, in agricultural, food, and other consumer cooperatives. Some of them get very large and serve a wider range of needs.
Consumer Social Organization
Cooperative members are called shareholders. It can be an ordinary citizen or a company or a legal entity. The main governing body of consumer cooperation is the General Assembly, which discusses the most important issues. In the period between fees, the Council and the Council of Consumer Societies are functioning. In addition, bodies that control the work of cooperatives are created within the organization, which helps to find and eliminate problems with the activities of cooperating officials.
Consumer societies use various institutions to improve production efficiency. If the shareholders live in different cities, a branch of the cooperative is created in a specific place. Nevertheless, the list of established institutions is not limited to representative offices and societies are often based on organizations to improve the living standards of their members. A separate association creates, for example, an educational institution that each shareholder can attend.
Company’s Legal Basis
The rights of members of the organization are protected by RF laws. The most comprehensive is the Law on Cooperatives, which all consumer organizations must comply with. What it is, its components and its organizational aspects are discussed in this article. Also, this issue is regulated by the Civil Code and other regulations.
This law is intended to protect the rights of consumer cooperation and shareholders. Therefore, units or stocks submitted to organizations by association members cannot be seized through the courts for debt. Equipment owned by the consumer society is not taxed. If a shareholder decides to leave the organization, all shares are returned except those introduced. If a court or consumer organization decides to liquidate the association, all property except for the indivisible funds will be returned to the shareholders.
How does it Operate?
Cooperatives operate democratically. The basics are governed by all members. Questions regarding Association activities will be considered at the Participant Meeting. Any member can come. Decisions in the consumer society are made through voting, and voting is done by each shareholder.
Meetings should be at least half of the members to be alerted a week before the meeting. The main functions of the collections are performed by the Council, the representative body of the Council. The meeting determines the rights of the participants, the amount of their contribution to the consumer society, programs with the main purpose of cooperation and other things. At the meeting, you can exclude shareholders who refuse to perform their duties or accept new members.
Government’s Role in the consumer society
The cooperative has its own executive body and responsibility for business activities. This role is performed by the Board of Directors. His powers are not the same in all associations – they are determined by councils. Each shareholder has the right to nominate himself/herself for any position in the consumer society, and the election of candidates is the responsibility of the council. The cooperative president acts on behalf of the association. An audit committee is set up to control the governing body.
Member of the consumer association
You can become a member of a cooperative by means: of registration of an organization or as a result of joining an existing association. In the second case, a person seeking to become a shareholder must submit an application to the city council. Upon joining the organization, shareholders pay two fees: introductory and unitary. The money invested by members of the cooperative is transferred to a special fund run by the consumer society.