PCC 2012 Annual Report
A message from our CEO
2012 was a stand-out year for our co-op and co-ops around the world. For PCC it was a time of continued growth, prosperity and progress; for the cooperative movement it was a year-long celebration of the contribution co-ops have made to the development and vitality of the communities that support them. In the spirit of "Cooperative Enterprises Build a Better World" (the theme for the International Year of Cooperatives), I am pleased to highlight ways in which PCC worked to build a better world last year, in our stores and in the communities we serve.
PCC shoppers know our stores are busy places. From our smallest in Seward Park to our largest in Edmonds, more than 1,000 PCC employees are in constant motion, handling products and serving customers. Activity does not always result in achievement, but our co-op did well in both regards. In comparison to the prior year, our nine stores attracted nearly 7% more customers and over 11% more sales. Our members enjoyed a 9% increase in discount benefits. We put plans in place to open two stores within the next two years — at Greenlake Village in north Seattle and in the Columbia City neighborhood in the south end– each to be funded entirely from our Co-op's cash reserves.
As you will read in this Annual Report, last year also saw new levels of achievement in our community outreach and consumer education programs, including the PCC Food Bank, Scrip and Kid Picks programs, as well as in PCC Cooks. Of particular importance to members was PCC's leadership role in ensuring that Washington State Initiative 522 — which would require labeling of products containing genetically engineered ingredients — received enough voter signatures to qualify for the November 2013 ballot. PCC's contribution of funds ($100,000) and staff support helped collect the signatures needed to safely qualify the measure.
The heart of our co-op's business is our offering of fresh, local and organic foods, and helping our customers to enjoy them. From free product and nutrition tours offered at each PCC location year-round, to expanded searchable product, nutrition and recipe databases, 2012 saw even more information sharing with our shoppers. Our many forms of print and online communication, including our increasingly popular social media platforms and family of electronic newsletters, invited important conversations with our customers. This helped keep us aware of, and responsive to, issues of concern to our members throughout the year.
Our co-op has come a long way since our start sixty years ago as a food buying club. What haven't changed are the contributions of committed and enthusiastic members necessary to make any cooperative effort succeed. Thank you for choosing to support our co-op in all the ways that you do. We look forward to another sixty years of working daily to earn your loyalty and trust, and to building a better world — starting in our own backyard.
CEO, PCC Natural Markets