Become a Vendor

At Seward Co-op we are always looking for products that will delight our customers and align with our values as a trusted retailer of local, organic and natural products. We welcome the opportunity to meet with you, look at your products, and discuss a potential partnership. We hope that the following information will be helpful as you prepare to bring your products to market. Here are a few steps we ask that you take before you submit products for consideration:

  1. Please verify that the items meet our product standards listed below.
  2. Prepare the new vendor/product information described below.
  3. Drop off a product sample and information at our Customer Service desk OR contact one of the following department managers to schedule a meeting.

Grocery
Arnie Dick (adick@seward.coop | 612-436-4056)

Meat & Seafood
Erik Sather (esather@seward.coop | 612-465-0889)

Produce
Travis Lusk (tlusk@seward.coop | 612-465-0881)

Deli
Bill Williams (bwilliams@seward.coop | 612-436-4049)

Cheese
Scott Heard (sheard@seward.coop | 612-465-0892)

Wellness
Heather Eddy (heddy@seward.coop | 612-436-4045)

Home and Gifts
Robin Davis (rdavis@seward.coop | 612-436-4040)


Product Standards

We prioritize the following products:

  • Items requested by our owners
  • High-quality, whole or minimally processed foods
  • P6 products which meet 2 of 3 criteria: 1.) Produced locally (MN, WI, IA, ND, and SD), 2.) Produced by a small company, 3.) Produced by a co-op or non-profit
  • Fair-trade Certified
  • Certified Organic
  • Free of GMOs (genetically modified organisms)
  • Products that meet unique needs in our community
  • Products that minimize environmental impacts in production, packaging, shipping, use, and disposal
  • Seafood that is sustainably sourced and products from animals that are raised humanely
  • Products from producers that share Seward Co-op’s values and run their businesses ethically and sustainably

We do not sell products with the following ingredients or attributes:

  • Artificial colors (e.g., Yellow No. 5), flavors (e.g., vanillin), sweeteners (e.g., aspartame), or preservatives (e.g., sodium benzoate)
  • Trans fats (hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils)
  • High-fructose corn syrup
  • Irradiated foods
  • Products that are tested on animals
  • Meat from animals that have been treated with preventative antibiotics, added hormones, growth promoters, or animal by-products used in feed
  • Seafood that is flagged orange or red by the Blue Ocean Institute


New Vendor/Product Information

The information we require varies depending on the type of product we are reviewing. Typically, we will need:

  • Contact person’s name, email, and address, along with a website address, if applicable
  • A product sample in market-ready packaging including:
    • Complete, accurate ingredients list with allergen listing that meets FDA requirements
    • Nutrition facts panel or supplement facts panel, if required by regulatory agencies
    • Accurate product weight
    • Expiration date and/or lot code for tracing products
    • Ideally, a UPC number (bar code)
  • Costs & terms:
    • Wholesale cost
    • Suggested retail price (if applicable)
    • Shipping & handling charges
    • Preferred payment terms. In general, Seward Co-op provides payment by check within 30 days from the date the invoice is received. We do not provide payments by credit card.
  • Quantity per case and minimum order quantities
  • Order placement options (e.g., phone, email, website)
  • Method and timeline of deliveries and invoicing. We prefer to receive an invoice with each delivery.
  • Returns / credits policy
  • Opportunities for promotional support (such as in-store product sampling and product discounts). If we determine that your product is P6 (see our product standards above and www.p6.coop), we will request a brief profile about your company along with a photo to help us promote your products.