Principle Six - A Cooperative Trade Movement

Shop Your Values with P6

What is P6?

Principle Six (P6) is a national labeling program that promotes local, cooperative and small farmers/producers. The program was named in the spirit of "Cooperation Among Cooperatives," the sixth of seven principles established by the International Cooperative Alliance.

P6 is owned by, and designed for, co-ops. P6 empowers you to use purchasing dollars to create an economy that embodies our highest values.

How do products receive the P6 Label?Second_Cloud_on_the_Left-P6.jpg

If a producer/farmer meets at least two of the three following criteria, their products receive the P6 label.

    A product grown or produced within 100 miles of the VFC, or having value added within that radius.

    Cooperative ownership of the business, nonprofit status or the business sources the majority of their product's ingredients from cooperatives or nonprofits. Some ESOP’s, Social Ventures, or alternative business models may qualify.

    A) Independently owned and operated, and 
    B) Selling direct to store or through a regional distributor.
        For international producers, Equal Exchange defines small producers according to the guidelines established by Fairtrade Labelling Organization (



How can I tell which products are P6?

Look for P6 stickers on deli and produce products (example on right), P6 labels on the shelf (examples below), or ask any VFC staff for assistance!

In Store VFC P6 Sample Signs


P6 FAQ's:

How can I tell what items are local in the Co-op?

The P6 shelf tag will include a checked box for local. The P6 label has replaced the local label in almost every case because a significant majority of local items qualify for P6.

Is this program specific to the VFC or are other co-ops doing this?

Currently, the following 10 other co-ops across the USA/Canada participate in the P6 Program:

Eastside Food Co-op (Minneapolis, MN)

Farmer Direct Co-op (Regina, Saskatchewan - Canada)

The Good Earth Food Co-op (St. Cloud, MN)

Maple Valley Cooperative (Cashton, WI)

Moscow Food Co-op (Moscow, ID)

Organic Valley/Organic Prairie (La Farge, WI)

Ozark Natural Foods (Fayetteville, AR)

Roanoke Natural Foods Co-op (Roanoke, VA)

Seward Co-op (Minneapolis, MN)

Three Rivers Market (Knoxville, TN)

Where can I get more information about P6? 

Information is available at Also, look for additional information about the program and even more P6 signs throughout the store!

Principle 6 Cooperative Trade Movement from Principle Six on Vimeo.