U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.


Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock () or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Tools for Cooperative Development

Tools for cooperatives include online courses, decision trees, and multimedia information kits that assist with setting up cooperatives of all types, converting businesses to employee ownership, making business plans, and financing cooperatives. If your toolkit is not represented here, please contact us at CoopInfo@usda.gov.

Becoming Employee Owned

Overview on converting small businesses to employee ownership via worker cooperatives. Includes assessment tools, case studies, and local technical assistance providers.

Business Plan for Small Inspected Meat Plant

Planning tool cooperatives can use to evaluate a small meat processing operation.

Capital Raising Navigator

When raising capital, a business may not offer or sell securities unless the offering has been registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission or falls within an exemption from registration. Each exemption has specific requirements that a company must meet. The SEC Capital Raising Navigator is an interactive tool that can help a cooperative or other business navigate the many regulatory pathways to raise capital based on the cooperative's circumstances.

Co-ops 101

Tutorial for starting a new cooperative.

Cooperative Housing Toolbox

A guide to developing a cooperative housing project.

Development manual for Small Rural Home Cooperatives

Guide for developing small rural housing cooperatives.

Farm Loan Discovery Tool

Farm Service Agency's (FSA) Farm Loan Discovery Tool to find the loan that’s right for you.

Feasibility Template for Small Multi-species meat plant

Excel Template to examine the feasibility of a small multi-Species meat processing plant.

Food Systems Financing tool

CDFA (Council of Development Financing Agencies) has developed a guide to financing tools that can support local food system development and growth.

Funding for Economic Democracy Toolkit

This toolkit by the Sustainable Economies Law Center provides an interactive PowerPoint with embedded videos and links to articles and other resources on the laws on funding cooperatives through fiscal sponsors and intermediaries.