Is anyone a member of a successful co-op and would be able to share some experiences and models of what works? I have been involved in my local co-op for about a year(the co-op has been around for ~3 years and is pretty successful - able to pay rent and also a few casual paid staff), and am becoming more involved in the business/ordering side of things. As I've been doing some ordering and seeing where things come from, I've realised that we are extremely dependent on fossil fuels, and there is really not much food production in my area. (a decent number of people have gardens, but the closest place we source produce from at any scale is 35km away). I'd really like to get more local food production happening. Our climate (coastal, warm temperate/subtropical) is capable of growing so much, but no one really seems to have the time/desire to produce food (though I'm starting a garden, but its a huge learning curve and I am trying to balance it with fulltime work as a tennis coach). I think thats part of the problem, most of us are caught in the 'busy trap' and not able to devote enough time and energy to really learning how to produce food sustainably. I would really like to know of ways that other co-ops have encouraged and managed more local food production. We have about 750 members, if everyone provided a little bit of surplus to the co-op... but then the problem becomes the management of it all and how/what to pay them, and the erratic supply that this would create. Anyway, I'm rambling a bit, but any suggestions/examples/creative ideas would be much appreciated. It just worries me a bit when I think that even a co-op which advertises itself and is thought of by many as 'sustainable, green' etc is so dependent on fossil energy and the current 'system'. But I also see the co-op as a great platform for launching more local food production and a better way of life for my local area. There is a great opportunity and growing momentum, we just have to harness it!