The Panhandle Cooperative Association held its Stockholders Meeting Wednesday, January 15th at the Gering Civic Center.
The cooperative didn’t return any dividends to its patrons, but the outlook has improved considerably, as it showed a $2.7 million improvement over last year and a small profit.
“I would say it’s a big turn around for us, and a lot of thanks go to our patrons, customers, and our staff,” said Charlie Wright, president, and CEO of the Panhandle Cooperative Association.
Wright says the cooperative is moving in a positive direction, and there will be some new programs coming out this year for patrons and non-patrons to take advantage of, such as the COOP Cash card.
The card will be a loyalty program, which will allow users to earn cash for what they purchase at the grocery and C-Stores.
“If you’re not a coop member, you get points on the card, and if you are a coop member, you get double points for your purchases, and I think that’s something everyone can appreciate,” he said.
Another bright spot for Panhandle Cooperative is the workforce, not only the long-time employees with knowledge and skill but the younger employees the cooperative is hiring.
Wright said they have a lot of young people in the sales team, helping to make a difference in the cooperative’s bottom-line.
The Panhandle Coop Association also announced Cherie Loose as its Recipient of the Roy Chelf Award. Loose is the Customer Service Clerk at the Administration office and a 40-year employee. She’ll receive a check for $1,000 and an additional $1,000 to be specifically used for expenses for a trip. Loose also received a clock, and her picture will be displayed in the administrative office.