Building a Co-operative Economy
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Co-op Facts & Fun

In 2014, researchers George Karaphillis, Fiona Duguid and Alicia Lake conducted an economic impact analysis of co-operatives in Canada for 2010. The study was conducted based on the latest data available from Industry Canada’s annual co-operative survey. As well, it included data on financial co-operatives via Statistics Canada and the annual reports of six co-operative insurance and investment companies. This infographic presents the key findings of the study as a one-page visual.  

Now, the facts....

According to the Co-operatives Policy Unit of Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada (formerly Industry Canada)::

  • There are more than 8,800 co-ops in Canada
  • Combined, these co-ops directly employ 150,000 people
  • 4 of every 10 Canadians are members of at least one co-op
  • In Québec, approximately 70% of the population are co-op members
  • In Saskatchewan 56% are co-op members
  • 250,000 independent Canadian producers rely on marketing and production co-operatives for their livelihood, and are especially important in rural and remote regions
  • Canada's co-operatives hold more than $210 billion in assets, which is owned by the members and communities they serve
  • Non-financial co-ops do nearly $30 billion a year in business
  • At least 7 co-ops are listed in the top 500 companies in Canada, and several financial co-operatives have been rated the best places to work in Canada
  • At least 70,000 co-op members serve on co-op boards of directors
  • A study published by the Québec Ministry of Industry and Commerce in 2001 shows that the long-term survival rate of co-operative enterprises is almost twice that of investor-owned companies

The Co-operative Policy Unit has published a number of reports, case studies, and profiles, all of which can be found here.

To read a series of national co-operative sector profiles created by Co-operative and Mutuals Canada, click here.

Now the fun....

A series of short "Mac versus PC" style of ads on the differences between banks and credit unions. Produced by


"I Love You" Bank vs. Credit Union 


Money To Blow


Happy to Serve


Under the Table


For an extensive list of videos on co-operatives and the various co-op sectors, visit

Another series on the differences betwen credit unions and banks.  These were created by Larissa Walkiw and produced by Common Wealth Credit Union's Young & Free Alberta campaign:


The Difference between Banks and Credit Unions: Part 1


The Difference between Banks and Credit Unions: Part 2


The Difference between Banks and Credit Unions: Part 3

What is a Credit Union?

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