A new report mapping the size and scale of New Zealand’s co-operative economy has found the sector contributes revenues of more than $42.3 billion per annum to the country’s economy with the Top 30 co-operatives and mutuals responsible for 1.4 million memberships, employment of 48,500 people, and a revenue to GDP ratio of 17.5 per cent.

Of the Top 30, the agri-food sector accounts for 65.2 per cent of revenue, 67.6 per cent of assets, and 82.8 per cent of employment in the co-operative economy. The next largest sector by revenue is retail and wholesale, accounting for 30.3 per cent.

Commenting on the release of the report, Co-operative Business New Zealand’s chief executive, Craig Presland said “The co-operative ethos of working together collaboratively for the common good is part of who we are as New Zealanders, and as our new Prime Minister remarked at an industry forum last year: ‘Co-operatives are the business model that has stood the test of time’.

The report, The New Zealand Co-operative Economyis a collaboration between the sector body Cooperative Business New Zealand and researchers from Massey University and the University of Auckland.

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