The Formation of a Co-op

A new meat processing co-op is opening on Monday November 21st in Havre. Paul Neubauer the Board chair of the co-op explains how it came to be.

The Montana Farmers Union has been a really critical component of the formation of this cooperative it was because of some grant money that was acquired by their board, as well as the vision of the Montana Farmers Union President Walter Schweitzer that allowed the seed of this project to germinate and that seed is a mobile harvest unit. So, it’s a killing facility built inside of a semi-trailer which can be pulled around by a truck and we’ll use that as the central focus of our processing facility, but it will be stationary. It has all the necessary requirements to be USDA certified and so that was acquired by Montana Farmers Union with some grant funding, and then we formed a steering committee for a cooperative member from across the state seven members total and incorporated a cooperative wrote out some by-laws and that’s how it started. Since then, we’ve been recruiting members and fundraising, applying for grants, and securing lending, and purchasing facilities and tools.“- Paul Neubauer

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