Regular shoppers at Exmouth's Co-op store could have a say in the running of the company’s food shops, funeral homes, legal business and insurance arm. 

Co-op has launched a national recruitment drive to attract new Member Representatives, who work with its board and senior managers ‘to tackle the big issues that communities are facing’. 

The company particularly wants to hear from people from younger age groups, ethnic minorities, candidates with disabilities and those from the LGBTQ+ community. 

Applicants must already be Co-op Members, having joined before January 2020, and need to have earned 500 membership points (the equivalent of spending around £10 a week on groceries in Co-op Food stores) between January 2 and 31 December 2022. 

Denise Scott-McDonald, the Members’ Council’s President, said: “As a co-operative, we welcome applications from all eligible members, and I can’t stress that enough. If we want to create a fairer world for everyone, we need to represent as many different voices as possible in our work and our Co-op. 

 “Right now, there’s so much to address and help out with. We know that people are keen to support however they can and being part of Co-op and the Members’ Council is a fantastic way to get involved and join something bigger. We also work closely with Member Nominated Directors and call on the business to take action with motions at our Annual General Meeting, all crucial to engaging with our members and including them in the Co-op they own.” 

The Co-op says it wants to create a fairer world for everyone and in 2023, the Members’ Council is focusing on three priorities: cost of living, member value and business performance, and member participation and community. These areas are intended to highlight both societal and business challenges, as well as where Co-op can have a real difference. 

Council representatives can serve a term between one and three years. The 100 people that make up the Council come from all walks of life and include ordinary members (people who trade with Co-op’s businesses); colleague members and members from independent co-operative societies. 

 Candidates can find information at and can apply until midday on 23 February.