Rural Missouri - October 2012 - (Page 4)

C O M M E N T S Cooperation nation s every craftsman knows, the right tool can make or break a project. For more than 75 years, the electric cooperative business model — when wielded effectively by engaged members — has served as a handy instrument to improve the quality of life in rural areas. October is designated as Cooperative Month, a time when we celebrate all that cooperatives can do. This year is special given the global celebration of the International Year of Cooperatives. Cooperatives — democratically governed businesses operating on an at-cost, not-for-profit basis — are unique. While profit-driven utilities worry about Wall Street, electric co-ops focus on Main Street. “At a time when folks are losing faith in big corporations, we have a great opportunity to showcase the many ways the local, consumer-owned and member-controlled cooperative form of business benefits communities across the country and the world,” declares Glenn English, CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA). photo courtesy of NRECA That holds true for all types of cooperatives. AgriDame Pauline Green, president of the International Cooperative Allicultural co-ops, for example, fight for fair prices for ance, kicked off the International Year of Cooperatives by speaking at farmers, while marketing co-ops provide nationally NRECA’s 2012 annual meeting in San Diego this past March. known branding. Credit unions lend at competitive hard to boost the local economy. Sac Osage Electric, El rates, and grocery co-ops give shoppers a say in what’s on Dorado Springs; Intercounty Electric, Licking; and White shelves. River Valley Electric, Branson, have helped area hospitals Member-owned cooperatives come in many shapes and improve their services by channeling money from the U.S. sizes. But all boast a common foundation of core principles Department of Agriculture’s Rural Economic Development that puts people first. Loan and Grant Program to these essential services. Cooperatives thrive in Missouri, with the state’s 47 elecGrundy Electric, Trenton, used the program to help tric co-ops alone serving nearly 600,000 members. Other North Central Community College fund its Barton Farm cooperatives in Missouri include MFA Inc., which saves Campus, which will educate future agriculture leaders. members serious money on the farm products they need. Tri-County Electric, Lancaster, helped a local school slash Started in 1914 by farmers wanting to pool purchases of its energy bills with a loan to install ground-source heat baler twine, MFA has grown to become one of the largest pumps to heat and cool classrooms. agribusinesses in the state. As these loans are repaid, the money goes into a revolvOutdoor equipment supplier REI, which has a retail ing fund that will continue to support rural communities, store in St. Louis, is a cooperative that returns a portion creating jobs and improving the quality of life. of the money spent on gear to its members. Its 4 million The Area Youth Benefit launched by Farmers’ Electric, members elect the board of directors and receive other benChillicothe, has raised more than $530,000 to pay mediefits, such as access to member-only sales and discounts on cal expenses for 488 northwest Missouri children. Webster gear rental. Like all cooperatives, REI puts money back into Electric, Marshfield, sponsors the Touchstone Energy Proits communities. A recent $10,000 grant to the Ozark Trail Am golf tournament. A part of the Price Cutter Charity Association funded improvements to the trail. Championship, this event benefits a host of charities. In Millersburg, a community in Callaway County, parOperation Round-Up programs and similar efforts that ents used the cooperative business model to launch a prelet members round their bills up to the nearest dollar for school to meet their needs. Millersburg Preschool was the worthy causes have pumped millions into community first accredited cooperative preschool in Missouri. As a cobenefits. At Cuivre River Electric, Troy, this effort has raised op, the school belongs to the parents. There are monthly more than $3.7 million to help needy families, provide parent meetings, a slate of officers selected by members scholarships and offer grants to deserving organizations. and committees that make everything happen. Engaged electric co-op members attend annual meetings The United Nations designated 2012 as the Internaand use the power of the cooperative network to have their tional Year of Cooperatives, under the banner “Cooperative voices heard by elected officials. Electric co-op employees Enterprises Build a Better World.” The resolution recognizes build local communities in many ways, including volunthe vital role cooperatives play in the well-being of nations teering with scouting programs, serving as 4-H project around the globe and encourages countries to foster coopleaders, sitting on the boards of charities and working with erative development as a way to generate local wealth, local chambers of commerce. employment and marketplace competition. These are just a few of the many examples of how elecDame Pauline Green, president of the International tric cooperatives have made their communities better placCooperative Alliance, celebrated the International Year of es in which to live. That’s not to mention the impact made Cooperatives with electric cooperative leaders at the annuby providing electricity at prices members can afford. al meeting of NRECA. Green said the fact that electric coAre you looking for a way to help change your comops serve 42 million people “shows that even in the most munity? Team up with cooperatives in your area. To find developed country in the world, the cooperative model of cooperatives near you, visit You also can business has a proven track record of commercial success learn more about co-ops at, which highand deep roots in local communities.” lights a different cooperative every day. Closer to home, Missouri’s electric cooperatives work “Devoted to the rural way of life” October 2012 Volume 64 / Number 10 Jim McCarty, editor Jason Jenkins, managing editor Heather Berry, associate editor Kyle Spradley, field editor Megan Schibi, editorial assistant Mary Davis, production manager Angie Jones Dusty Weter Co-op page designers A Global celebration recognizes cooperative contribution USPS 473-000 ISSN 0164-8578 Copyright 2012, Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives. Call for reprint rights. Rural Missouri is published monthly by the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives. Barry Hart, executive vice president. Individual subscription rate: $9 per year or $21 for three years, taxes and postage included. Group rate for members of participating RECs $3.99, taxes and postage included. Delivery as specified by subscriber. If not specified, delivery will be by periodical class mail at subscriber’s expense. Periodical Class postage paid at Jefferson City, MO, and additional mailing offices. Find us on Postmasters: Send address changes to Rural Missouri, P.O. Box 1645, Jefferson City, MO 65102. Subscribers: Report change of address to your local cooperative. Do not send change of address to Rural Missouri. Advertising standards: Advertising published in Rural Missouri is accepted on the premise that the merchandise and services offered are accurately described and sold to customers at the advertised price. Rural Missouri and Missouri’s electric cooperatives do not endorse any products or services advertised herein. Advertising that does not conform to these standards or that is deceptive or misleading is never knowingly accepted by this publication. Advertising information: 573-659-3400 National Advertising Representative: National Country Market; 611 S. Congress St., Suite 504; Austin, TX 78704 573-659-3400 Member, Missouri Association of Publications and Missouri Press Association P.O. Box 1645 Jefferson City, MO 65102 573-659-3423 Rural Missouri 4 WWW.RURALMISSOURI.COOP http://WWW.RURALMISSOURI.COOP

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - October 2012

Rural Missouri - October 2012
Table of Contents
The future of food
A grotesque spectacle
Out of the Way Eats
Summon your stomach
Soothing suds
Hearth and Home
Out of the woodwork
Around Missouri
A heart to serve

Rural Missouri - October 2012