Lesson 2: Co-operatives for profit, not for profit, purpose and a bit about tax

As part of our commitment to providing opportunities for free education about collaborative farming, we present the second video lesson in our suite of online learning resources and tools.

In lesson 2, you will learn about the legal models that can be used in starting your co-operative. The lesson provides information about the functions, features and capabilities of the different structures so that you and your group can choose the best legal model for your purpose. The difference between a co-operative for profit (a distributing co-op) compared to a co-operative not for profit (a non-distributing co-op) as highlighted by Australian tax laws is explained. We smash the myth that not for profits cannot make a profit; all successful co-operatives should make a profit but it is how that money is used that is the key to understanding this term. This should be outlined in the co-operative’s constitution. The purpose of a distributing co-operative (for profit) and a non-distributing co-operative (not for profit) is explored to support you to find the best legal model fit for purpose.

To find out more about co-operatives for profit, not for profit, purpose and a bit about tax, watch video lesson 2! We hope you enjoy this Farming Together tool as part of your learning.

Corporate regulators as seen in the video:

The Farming Together video lessons were produced with funding from the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment. The videos provide insight and education about collaborative farming, including co-operatives. Farming Together have worked with co-operatives, farming and educational experts to ensure that we have the most relevant and up-to-date information to keep you informed.

Are you ready to keep learning? Lesson 3 discusses value for members, member engagement, the business plan and disclosure statement – watch it now!