What are the Co-op’s hours?

We are open daily from 8 AM to 8 PM. We are closed on Thanksgiving Day (and the day after), Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day.

Are reusable shopping bags and containers permitted?

Reusable shopping bags are encouraged, as the city’s plastic bag ban ordinance requires us to charge $0.10 for each paper bag that we provide.

Customers are not permitted to shop into their own bags. Reusable containers for bulk and on-tap kombucha are permitted. We are not accepting reusable drink containers in our Cafe.

Why am I not getting my e-receipts?

To receive an e-receipt you must be 1) a fully-paid Co-op member 2) have signed up to receive e-receipts at Customer Service 3) shop with your member card. If you have done all the following and are still not receiving e-receipts, you may need to whitelist our email address (eastendreceipts@gmail.com) so receipts are not blocked or put into a SPAM folder. More information on how to do this is available here.

What are your Product Guidelines?

East End Food Co-op believes that you have the right to know how we choose the products on our shelves. We’ve developed these purchasing guidelines to reflect the core values expressed in our Ends Policy Statement (see above). This guide allows us to make conscious choices that return value to our members, our community, and our planet.

We strive to promote products and methods that are:

  • Whole* and minimally processed*
  • Local*
  • Certified Organic
  • Certified Naturally Grown and/or Biodynamic
  • Non-GMO Project Verified/Specified Non-GMO
  • Certified Fair Trade
  • Certified Humane
  • Minimally packaged or in recyclable &/or returnable containers
  • Produced using humane and ecologically sound methods that don’t exploit people, animals, or our environment

We will not knowingly carry products that:

  • Contain artificial ingredients, such as colorings, flavorings, preservatives or additives
  • Contain known harmful ingredients such as nitrates or nitrites, synthetic chemicals, hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup, or MSG
  • Contain antibiotics or growth hormones
  • Have been tested on animals

*local = within a 250 mile radius of Pittsburgh extending to all of Pennsylvania
*whole = having only one ingredient: itself
*minimally processed = using traditional, low-tech methods of processing or preservation, for example:  smoking, roasting, freezing, canning, drying, or fermenting. These techniques do not fundamentally alter or separate whole foods.

What are the Co-op’s holiday hours?

The East End Food Co-op is closed on Thanksgiving (and the day after), Christmas, and New Year’s Day.

What is a co-op?

A co-op is a business voluntarily owned by the people who use it and operated for the benefit of its members. It’s a simple concept, with profound effects for people, communities and the economy.

Each co-op is unique, but thousands of co-ops around the world have the Seven Cooperative Principles in common:

  • Voluntary & Open Membership
  • Democratic Member Control
  • Economic Participation
  • Autonomy & Independence
  • Education, Training & Information
  • Cooperation among Cooperatives
  • Concern for the Community

Does the Co-op have a volunteer program?

The Co-op ended our Volunteer Program in September 2014. It was with deep regret that we came to this decision, and we miss having non-staff members involved so directly in the business operations. We truly appreciate every moment of time, skills, ideas, and energy that each of our volunteers contributed.

For more information about this decision, you can review these Volunteer Program FAQ’s.

Additional Information and Resources:

A number of articles that we have found helpful for reference and background include:

Can you honor my membership from another food Co-op?

No. While we appreciate and support cooperation among cooperatives, we are not currently able to extend member benefits to shoppers that have not invested in a membership share of our Co-op. Many co-ops are able to extend the member discount to members of other co-ops because it’s their practice to charge non-members extra, whereas we offer our members a discount, which affects our bottom line more significantly. Beyond that, there are also differences in how benefits are administered between one co-op to another. In the years to come, we will examine our discount structure as a whole, so we can consider how a courtesy like this may be managed.

Do other discounts stack on top of my member discount?

Yes and no. The quarterly member discount does stack with other courtesy discounts, but the daily member discount does not. When a member is eligible for other discounts beyond their daily discount, including the quarterly and Senior discounts, the greater percent discount is applied. No discounts may exceed 20%. For a full list of discount combinations, please click here.

How do I place a special order?

Members save 20% off the regular retail price, excluding all fluid dairy products which are sold at a 10% discount, and Co+op Deals and Co+op Basics, which are sold at the sale price, less the 2% member discount. Sale item orders must be placed before the sale ends. Sale dates are posted in the sales fliers and on our website.

Orders are placed through Customer Service, either in person, by phone, or using the online form.

How do I make changes to my membership, or request a refund of my membership share?

Stop by Customer Service to record any changes to your membership (i.e. add or remove a household member, update your address or phone number, request to refund your share). You may also email info@eastendfood.coop. All changes must be documented in writing by the primary member.

Does my membership expire?

Unless you request to refund your share, your membership is valid for your lifetime. If you’re not sure whether you’re still a member, Customer Service can check on your membership status and reactivate a lapsed membership.

What is the share payment?

Every co-op’s purpose is to meet member needs, and fulfilling that purpose requires capital. Member share payments are contributions to the collective capital of the co-op. Our share payment is currently valued at $100, which can be paid in full or $25 quarterly installments. There are no annual fees, and your share is refundable upon request.

When can I use my 10% quarterly discount?

Your Co-op operates on a fiscal year that begins in July. Quarterly discounts are valid until the end of each quarter. Quarter 1: July, August, September; Quarter 2: October, November, December; Quarter 3: January, February, March; Quarter 4: April, May, June. Members select the transaction they’d like to use their quarterly discount. This benefit is available four times a year (once in each quarter).

How do I become a member?

To join the East End Food Co-op, to check the status of your membership or to reactivate a lapsed membership, do one of the following:

  • Contact Customer Service at 412-242-3598
  • Stop by the Customer Service Desk in the front of the store
  • Fill out our online form, and then stop by the Customer Service Desk to complete the transaction

How much is membership?

Your $100 investment, the current value of a co-op share is paid once and entitles you and your household to the privileges of one membership (one vote in co-op elections). There are no annual fees and the share is fully refundable.

You can pay for your share in two ways:

  • One payment of $100
  • Four quarterly installments of $25 each

Ownership in your community grocery store offers:

  • 2% discount on all daily purchases
  • 10% discount quarterly on the transaction of your choice
  • Co+op Deals coupons mailed to your home
  • Ability to place money-saving Special Orders
  • Check-writing privileges for up to $20 over purchase amount
  • Option to receive e-receipts electronically for all shopping transactions*
  • Access to EEFC Federal Credit Union
  • Voting privileges in Co-op elections
  • The opportunity to run for the EEFC Board of Directors*
  • The opportunity to participate with board committees
  • Reduced advertising rates in The Co-operator
  • Discounts extended by other businesses through our Community Partners Program*

Members must keep membership active with one of the listed payment plans to enjoy the benefits of membership listed above. In addition, any benefits marked with an * are only available for fully-paid members (not those on installment plans). To join the East End Food Co-op, to check the status of your membership or to reactivate a lapsed membership, simply contact Customer Service at 412-242-3598 or stop by the Customer Service Desk in the front of the store.

Do I have to be a member to shop?

No! Our Co-op market is open to the public and membership is not required to make purchases, however there are a number of membership benefits. We encourage you to take a look around and learn more about the benefits of the cooperative business model, and how you can get involved.  At East End Food Co-op, it’s way more than just good food.  You own it!