Frequently Asked Questions
What is Avocado Co-op?
Avocado Co-op is a retail co-op that makes living sustainably easier than ever by offering eco-friendly, member-tested household products. We strive to offer products that reduce the amount of waste, water, and energy consumed while still being effective.
What kind of store is it?
We are starting with an online store, which will always play an important role in connecting and engaging our community. We see the co-op eventually growing into physical stores so that you can experience new products firsthand.
Which area does the co-op serve?
We offer $5 hand delivery and free pickup options to our members in Kitchener, Waterloo and Guelph, Ontario. For those outside of our distribution network, please contact us so that we can determine how to best serve you.
Can I try the service before buying a $10 memberships share?
Yes! You can try us out by ordering from us as Guest for your first two orders. On your 3rd order, we ask that you buy a $10 lifetime membership share.
How does the Co-op make it easier to live more sustainably?
We research, source and sell the most usable and sustainable products available based on our four key dimensions: product lifecycle, practicality, supplier, and whether it is an improvement from the current norm. Important considerations for products are whether they reduce the amount of energy and water you use, how they are packaged, whether they are made from recycled materials, how they are produced, and whether they are biodegradable. We strive to source from companies that share our values and see sustainability as a journey of continuing steps towards improvement. Finally, to ensure the products we offer are useful and enjoyable, we conduct usability testing with our members to select the brands and products that perform best in the eyes of our members.
What kind of products do you sell?
We sell member-tested, environmentally-friendly household products which make it easier to live more sustainably.
Currently, we sell personal paper products (such as toilet paper, tissue paper, and paper towel), cleaning supplies, green bin and garbage supplies, and handwashing supplies. We also sell durable goods such as hand soap dispensers, handkerchiefs, personal care products (such as toothbrushes), water bottles and food storage options.
When deciding whether to offer new products to our members, we evaluate each potential product based on our four key dimensions. Importantly, one of these key dimensions asks us to consider how well the product actually works. This means we often have our willing members test potential products in their own home to ensure that the product is both useful and efficient. We are frequently looking for product testing volunteers, so join our mailing list to watch for our next product test!
What does "more sustainably" mean for the co-op?
Our focus is on environmental sustainability, with the goal of making it easier for everyone to reduce their impact on the environment through the choices they make for their home.
We realize that it’s not easy being green. Achieving “absolute sustainability” can feel overwhelming when there are countless things to consider, and the solutions keep evolving. We believe working towards a low-impact lifestyle is a journey of incremental improvements, made by making many small changes to one’s everyday life. No matter where you are on your sustainability journey, Avocado Co-op is there to help you create a cleaner, greener life.
How does ordering work?
You choose exactly the products you want and how often you want them. We set-up a monthly order for you based on these preferences, and email you so you can change, skip or pay for your monthly order. You can add and remove products from your order and you can change your preferences at any time.
Orders are created and confirmed in the first 2 weeks of the month and delivered in the last 2 weeks. If you live in our distribution network within Waterloo region or Guelph, you can choose to have your package hand delivered for $5, or pick up it up for free at one of our pickup locations. If you live outside our distribution network, contact us so that we can work with you to determine how to best serve you.
You can order twice as a Guest. On your 3rd order, you will need to buy a $10 lifetime membership share.
What if I forget to confirm my order?
Unlike many ordering services out there, our default is that we do NOT charge you or send you anything that you don’t confirm in your order. So, if you forget to confirm, you won’t be getting any unexpected deliveries from us.
If you forgot to confirm your order this month and need something, you can contact us and we’ll do our best to fulfill your order. Note: we do not carry a large amount of backstock and may not be able to complete orders that are not confirmed by the monthly deadline.
What if I don't need one of my preferred products?
You choose the products that appear on your product preferences and how frequently you need them (e.g. monthly, every other month, every three months, etc.).
If you have a product in your cart that you no longer want or simply don’t need that month, you can remove it from your cart, remove any products you don't need each month, or update the frequency in your preferences to better suit your needs.
Why do I need to buy a $10 membership share?
As a retail co-op, we are required to do a majority of our business with our members. When you buy a $10 membership share, you become a part owner of the co-op, with equal say in how we do things as the original founders. You can run for and elect the board, vote at our Annual General Meetings, and invest in the co-op.
Most importantly, being accountable to you (our members!) is key to ensuring we are headed in the right direction. We believe being a co-op allows us to build a responsible organization that prioritizes intentional, mindful, and low-impact consumer decisions.
You can try it out by ordering from us as Guest. On your 3rd order, we ask that you buy a $10 lifetime membership share to become a member!
What is a retail co-op and why choose it?
A retail co-op is in many ways similar to any incorporated business; one exception is ownership. In most corporations, the ownership and voting power is divided among the shareholders based on how many shares they own. In a retail co-op, each customer's ownership share gives them a single vote.
The Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC) is one of the largest retail co-ops in Canada.
Like any business, the co-op needs to be financially healthy, but by being a co-op we can put the goal of making it easier to live more sustainably ahead of short-term growth or sales. This flexibility will enable us to evolve the types of products we sell and provide services which help people live more sustainably even if those services are revenue neutral.
How do I pause order reminders?
Go to your profile page, sign in, and under Order Reminders, click the Pause button. Your order reminders will be stopped until you resume.
How can I suggest products or other ideas to Avocado Co-op?
As a co-op, your feedback is vital. Head over to our feedback page to give us your two cents, we love to hear from you!
Doesn’t being “green” just mean it’s more expensive?
It can be a challenge to produce environmentally-friendly products, which sometimes means that they come with a higher price tag. In some cases, the increase in cost covers things such as producing smaller quantities and using alternative production processes; however, in other cases, the higher prices are charged simply because the market allows for it.
As a co-op, our bottom line is serving our members. We work to keep our margins consistent and prices fair, so that we can offer prices similar to or lower than what you would find in your local grocery store. Visit our store for details on the products and prices.
How do I cancel my membership?
You only have to buy your $10 membership share once and it lasts a lifetime. Unlike many other subscription services out there, our default for products is NOT to send you anything that you haven’t confirmed, so you will never be charged for anything that you did not choose to purchase.
If you want to stop receiving your order reminders, go to your profile page, sign in, and under Order Reminders, click the Pause button. You will need to confirm and then order reminders will be paused until you resume.
If you would still like to redeem your lifetime membership share, please contact us and we will gladly process your request!