Because we are an all volunteer organization, each member must accept personal responsibility for the following procedures. Our system works because we the member-owners of EcoMart Northern Rivers Co-op Ltd take pride and responsibility for making it work.
By joining the cooperative, you agree that you understand the following statement and Terms of Service.
Acting as the agent of producer members, EcoMart Northern Rivers Co-op Ltd posts and publicizes the products that Northern Rivers producers have for sale, receive orders, provides a way for products to be delivered to other members of the cooperative, collect from the customers and forwards the payments to producers.
Acting as the agent for customer members, we provide them a catalog of available local food products that includes information about how and where the product was grown and processed. We receive their orders and notify the appropriate producers, arrange for the food to be delivered, receive and process their payments. For both producers and customer members, we provide a basic screening of products and producers based on our published parameters, and education and training regarding the use and the advantages of local foods.
The essential business of the cooperative is to provide a marketplace where willing buyers and sellers can meet. At no time does the cooperative ever have title to any of the products. We have no inventory. With the exception of procured items the products that go through our distribution system are owned either by the producer, or by the customer who purchases “title” to the product from the producer. All complaints should first be brought to the attention of the producer, unless it is a situation where the cooperative itself is at fault (such as broken eggs due to poor packing). If a successful resolution cannot be found by the affected producer and customer members, the cooperative’s arbitration procedure can be invoked.
Terms of Service
- Each order is a legally enforceable contract for the producer to deliver and the consumer to pick up and pay for the groceries ordered. You are obligated to pay for the items you order that we deliver to your pick-up site or home delivery, even if you do not pick them up, or are not present to receive your home delivery, unless they are delivered to you damaged, spoiled or broken. Everything in your online shopping basket when the fortnightly order closes is an order for those products. The coop’s software does not have a “check-out” page. When you place something in your shopping cart, it stays there until you remove it. You can remove or add items up to the close of the monthly order which you see by looking at this page.
- When you order, pick up your groceries during the time specified for your pickup site. This is part of our contract. We are not a giant supermarket with acres of cold storage. Most of our pick up sites do not have the ability to hold orders past their operating hours, especially if refrigerated or frozen items are involved. It is your responsibility to know where to pick up your food and the hours the pick-up site is open. This information is on your invoice.
- All orders must be paid before they leave the pickup site or are left at a home delivery. Members are expected to pay by Paypal, Direct Debit or check before taking their groceries home. Prompt payment is a condition of membership.
- We understand that emergencies happen on delivery day. If this happens to you, please call 0427363006 as soon as possible. The earlier we know about a situation, the better we will be able to deal with it. You can also contact the cooperative before the fortnightly order closes about making alternative delivery arrangements. Depending on the circumstances, we may be able to arrange something other than the specified hours for pickup, but this must be arranged before you turn in your order.
- When you pick up your order, make sure you get all the items you order. Take the time to check your invoice thoroughly to make sure you get everything. If an item isn't there, report it at the cashier table when you check out and make sure it is written on the missing item log so your account can be properly credited. You can deduct the amount of the missing item(s) from your invoice, and pay the new amount. All claims for missing/damaged items must be made at the pick-up site. Errors in the accounting on invoices (including credits or debits that you believe are errors) must be reported within 5 days of delivery day. Report those errors to the treasurer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If the cooperative has the ability to store items/orders not picked up, the cooperative will make one attempt to contact you about picking up your items that will include the phone number and the name of the person who has your order or missing items. The items will probably not be at the regular pick-up site, but at someone's home. It is the member's responsibility to contact the volunteer who has the items to arrange for a pick-up. The cooperative will not make multiple attempts to contact you. You should contact us sooner rather than later about picking up. If an item spoils or loses quality because you did not pick it up promptly, you will still be expected to pay for it.
- Treat the cooperative volunteers well. EcoMart Northern Rivers Co-op Ltd does not have employees. We have volunteers who invest their time and effort as sweat equity in growing the future of this cooperative. There can never be a question of an "employee-customer" relationship in your interactions with the volunteer workers of EcoMart Northern Rivers Co-op Ltd. Do not complain to delivery day volunteers or berate or blame them for something that may have gone wrong with your order. Volunteers have no control over what the producers do. If you have an issue with the producer, bring it to the attention of the producer. If you have an issue with the cooperative, bring it to the attention of the Co-op Chair at email@example.com. Mistreatment of volunteers is a serious breach of the cooperative ethics that could lead to the revocation of membership.
- Please keep your contact information current on our cooperative records. We encourage you to list mobile phone numbers on your membership, so we can contact you directly on delivery day if there is a problem. If you change your email address, notify us. Email changes or updates to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For members approved as producers, these Terms of Service include the cooperative's Producer Procedures and Standards.