In-Store Shareholder Volunteer Hours

Q. What is a Shareholder?

A. A Shareholder is an owner of the Brattleboro Food Co-op. By becoming a Shareholder, one may obtain many benefits including a discount on purchases.

Q. How do I (as a Shareholder) obtain a discount?

A. You can either volunteer with our Commitment to Community program or by working in-store volunteer shifts at the Co-op. You will receive a discount by working 2 volunteer hours per month.

Please Note: Elder Shareholders are not required to do volunteer hours to maintain their discount.

Q. How do I sign up?

A. Email: The Customer Service team at, or Shareholder Services at

Q. Where do I report when I show up at the Co-op to do my volunteer hours?

A. Please check in at the Customer Service booth and take a Shareholder Worker magnetic name badge. Ask your Customer Service representative to either escort you to the department you will be working in, or to page someone in that department to come meet you and orient you to the current tasks needed to be accomplished in that department.

Q. What are the requirements when performing a volunteer shift?

A. Please wear closed-toed shoes, short or long sleeve shirt only, a hat or hair net, and stay home if you are sick. Additionally, please refrain from wearing any perfumes or scents.

Departments and available Shareholder Volunteer shifts

Department Hours to choose upon availability
– 2-hour slots –
Volunteer Tasks may include:
Bulk Department 7 Days per week

  • 2 hour slots between
    9:00 am – 6:00 pm
    Must be finished by 6:00 pm.
Packing bulk bags and containers of dried fruit, nuts, flours, and other “we-pack” products.
Bagging at Checkout 7 Days per week

  • 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
  • 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Bagging customers’ groceries at the registers.
Grocery Department* 7 Days per week

  • 5:00 pm – 7:00pm
  • Fronting and facing the Grocery aisles, including Frozen and Dairy cases
Produce Department Fridays and Saturdays

    • 9:00 am – 11:00 am
    • 11:00 am – 1:00 pm


  • Rinsing, cutting, and bagging produce (fresh vegetables and fruit)
Deli Department (Kitchen)*
  • Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays
    • 2-hour slots between
      9:00 am – 5:00 pm
      Must be finished by 5:00 pm.
  • Wednesdays and Sundays
    • 2-hour slots between
      9:00 am – 4:00 pm
      Must be finished by 4:00 pm.
  • General Tasks including:
    • Food prep: peeling, slicing, washing, cutting, chopping, dicing, Cryovac packing, Grab & Go packing, making simple sauces, marinades, etc.
    • Dishwashing
    • Basic cleaning tasks
  • Adhere to protocols to safely move throughout the kitchen as reviewed by the supervisor upon first visit.
  • General notes about the Deli kitchen/departments and food safety procedures.

    • Please only wear comfortable, closed-toed shoes that are non-skid. This is for your safety.
    • *In some departments tasks may also include:
      • Working with knives and other cutting tools such as food processors and slicers.
      • Working with equipment such as: hot oven, stove burners, steamer, fryer, or dish machine
      • Working in cold temperatures for short periods of time such as walk-in coolers and freezers with temperatures between 0º F and 41º F (degrees Fahrenheit) respectively
    • *Please follow safe food handling procedures (read and review our Safe Food Handling Guideline sheet as well):
      • Wash hands at the start of shift, and after any rest break
      • Remove bracelets, arm bands, and other jewelry which may either impede your work or create a safety hazard (this may include earrings and piercings)
      • Your hair MUST be covered and tied back. If your hair is short, it must be restrained in a hairnet, or a clean hat (hat must be approved by supervisor – no knit or woven hats). If your hair is long enough to tie back you may do so, but any hair escaping tie must be restrained under a hat or hairnet. If you have facial hair you may be asked to wear a beard net (ask supervisor for more details re: facial hair).
      • Wear food safe gloves when working with RTE (ready-to-eat) foods and raw meats.
      • Please read and review the safe food handling guideline sheet.


  • Please also use proper lifting techniques:
  • Follow these tips to avoid compressing the spinal discs or straining your lower back when you are lifting:

    • Keep a wide base of support. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart, with one foot slightly ahead of the other (karate stance).
    • Squat down, bending at the hips and knees only. If needed, put one knee to the floor and your other knee in front of you, bent at a right angle (half kneeling).
    • Keep good posture. Look straight ahead, and keep your back straight, your chest out, and your shoulders back. This helps keep your upper back straight while having a slight arch in your lower back.
    • Slowly lift by straightening your hips and knees (not your back). Keep your back straight, and don’t twist as you lift.
    • Hold the load as close to your body as possible, at the level of your belly button.
    • Use your feet to change direction, taking small steps.
    • Lead with your hips as you change direction. Keep your shoulders in line with your hips as you move.
    • Set down your load carefully, squatting with the knees and hips only.

    Keep in mind:

    • Do not attempt to lift by bending forward. Bend your hips and knees to squat down to your load, keep it close to your body, and straighten your legs to lift.
    • Never lift a heavy object above shoulder level.
    • Avoid turning or twisting your body while lifting or holding a heavy object.