About us

Scotland’s experts on farmer co-ops and food industry collaboration, we provide a range of specialist information, development and consultancy services to help businesses work together more effectively.

What we do

Now more than ever, it’s vital for farmers and food and drink businesses to work together more effectively - all of SAOS’s work centres on facilitating this.

Membership

We are a development organisation owned by our members. We provide a range of specialist services that are not available elsewhere, to assist our members by developing their people and their businessses. Get in touch to find out how we can help you.

What's New

Latest news, views and updates from us here at SAOS.

Global co-operation

  • Co-operatives provide jobs or work opportunities to 10% of the world’s employed population. 
  • The three hundred top co-operatives or co-operative groups generate $2.1 trillion.
  • Co-ops come in all sizes, and operate in all sectors - from tiny fairtrade producers, to FC Barcelona
  • Co-operation is widespread across the globe, but it all began in the UK in 1844 with a group of artisans, the Rochdale Pioneers, who pooled together to improve their lot. You can watch a video about the Rochdale Pioneers and the co-operative movement here.
  • Co-operatives bring people together in a democratic and equal way. Whether the members are the customers, employees, users or residents, co-operatives are democratically managed by the 'one member, one vote' rule, regardless of the amount of capital they put in
  • Through self-help and empowerment, reinvesting in their communities and concern for the well-being of people and the world in which we live, co-ops nurture a long-term vision for sustainable economic growth, social development and environmental responsibility.

Find out more in our Co-op FAQs.

Other great sources for more information are our sister organisations:

The International Co-operative Alliance, which represents and serves co-operatives around the world www.ica.co-op.
Co-operatives UK is the umbrella body for all co-ops in the UK https://www.uk.coop/