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Partners in Cooperative Development

The 2014 Farm Bill recognized the economic development and wealth-building opportunities of cooperatives by requiring that Federal agencies and cooperative organizations foster and coordinate on cooperative development. Federal partners include agencies with jurisdiction over cooperatives and with programs that cooperative businesses can use. The Agriculture Department, the Internal Revenue Service, the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division, the Labor Department, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development are all agencies with direct jurisdiction over cooperatives. The Small Business Administration is required under the Main Street Employee Ownership Act to enter agreements with Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) to conduct training and provide information and resources on employee ownership through cooperatives. Other agencies have programs, information, and/or tools that cooperatives can access depending on the cooperative’s business. States and private sector cooperative organizations are also partners and are encouraged to be active participants in the Interagency Working Group. If your organization is not included here, please contact us at CoopInfo@usda.gov .

State & Local Partners

The National Agricultural Law Center of the University of Arkansas

The University of Arkansas National Agricultural Law Center educates law school students on cooperative and agricultural law.

University of Kansas Arthur Capper Cooperative Center

The Kansas State Arthur Capper Cooperative Center researches and educates about agricultural cooperatives.

University of Missouri Graduate Institute of Cooperative Leadership

The University of Missouri's Graduate Institute of Cooperative Leadership educates cooperative managers and directors on research-based approaches to fostering successful agricultural cooperatives.


Colorado Employee Ownership Office

The Colorado Employee Ownership Office provides technical assistance, financial information, tools, mentoring opportunities, and professional referrals to help business owners/employers convert or transition their businesses to employee or worker ownership.