Types of Cooperative SocietiesThere are several types of cooperative societies based on the nature of their operations are described below:
- Consumer's Cooperative Societies: The consumer cooperative societies are created to protect the interests of consumers. The members consist of consumers who prefer to obtain good quality products at reasonable prices. The society aims at eradicating middlemen to achieve economy in operations. They purchase goods in bulk directly from the wholesalers and sell them to the members, thereby eliminating the middlemen. Profits, if any, are shared based on their capital investment to the society or purchases made by the individual members.
- Producer's Cooperative Societies: These societies are formed to protect the interest of small producers. The society is comprised of producers who wish to procure inputs for production of goods in order to meet the demands of consumers. The society's objective is to fight against the big capitalists and increase the bargaining power of the small producers. It supplies raw materials, equipment and other inputs to the members and also buys the output for sale. Profits among the members are generally shared.
- Marketing Cooperative Societies: These societies are formed to help small producers in selling their products. The members are comprised of producers who aspire to obtain reasonable prices for their output. The society aims to eliminate middlemen and perk up competitive position of its members by securing a favourable market for the products. It brings in output of individual members and performs marketing functions.
- Farmer's Cooperative Societies: These societies are formed to protect the interests of farmers by giving better inputs at a reasonable price. The members of this society are comprised of farmers who aspire to jointly take up farming activities. The main objective is to gain the benefits of large scale farming and enhance the productivity. These societies provide better quality seeds, fertilizers, machinery and other modern techniques to implement in the cultivation of crops. This not only helps the farms in improving the yield and returns, but also solves the problems related to transportation, warehousing, packaging, etc., to sell the output for the best possible price. Profits are shared according to each member's investment to the pool of output.
- Credit Cooperative Societies: These societies are formed to provide easy credit on reasonable terms to the members. The society is comprised of persons who seek financial aid in the form of loans. The aim of these societies is to defend the members from exploitation by lenders who levy high rates of interest on loans. These societies grant loans to members from the amounts collected as capital and from deposits received from members thereby enabling levy of low rates of interest.
- Cooperative Housing Societies: Cooperative housing societies are formed to aid people with limited income in constructing houses at reasonable price. The society is comprised of members who are aspiring to procure residential accommodation at lower costs. The main objective is to solve the housing problems of the members by constructing houses and by giving an option of paying in installments. These societies also construct flats or provide plots to members on which the members are entitled to construct a house as per their wish.