Farmer Pirates Compost Transitions to Worker Cooperative

BUFFALO, NY – Cooperation Buffalo, a local nonprofit dedicated to helping workers build
economic power through cooperatives, is thrilled to announce that Farmer Pirates Compost is
the latest local business to transition to a worker cooperative structure.

Founded in 2014, Farmer Pirates Compost is a leading composting company in Buffalo, NY,
committed to diverting organic waste from landfills and transforming it into nutrient-rich compost
for local farms and gardens. With a commitment to environmental stewardship and social
responsibility, the transition to a worker cooperative solidifies their dedication to creating a
positive impact on both the environment and the livelihoods of their employees.

Cooperation Buffalo assisted the worker-owners of Farmer Pirates Compost with technical
assistance to facilitate the transition, business development support, and a non-extractive loan
to support the company’s 2023 expansion. Farmer Pirates Compost was selected to provide
curbside composting service to 2,000 homes in the City of Buffalo as part of the City’s “Scrap It!
Curbside” program, which will begin this summer.

As a worker cooperative, the company is cooperatively owned and managed by its dedicated.
team of employees, ensuring that each worker has a voice in decision-making and a stake in
the company’s success. This democratic structure empowers the workers to contribute their
expertise and insights, fostering a more inclusive and sustainable business operation.

CIty of Buffalo residents can find more information and sign up for the “Scrap It! Curbside”
composting program for free weekly curbside food waste pickup, on the same day as their
existing trash and recycling pickup, at
“We always knew that we wanted to function like a worker cooperative,” said Terra Dumas,
worker-owner at Farmer Pirates Compost. “We wanted a model where everyone who is working
with us can have the same benefits, whether that’s financial or decision making. It’s very
rewarding to see something that you’ve directly contributed to creating do well and for you to do
well in return.”

The worker cooperative model is gaining traction in the US across many industries as a means
to foster economic democracy and social equity. Farmer Pirates Compost’s pioneering transition
sets a precedent for other local companies to follow, encouraging the adoption of cooperative
principles and sustainable business practices.

For more information on starting a worker cooperative or transitioning an existing company to
employee ownership, contact Cooperation Buffalo at, (716)
541-0407, and visit
About Cooperation Buffalo:

Cooperation Buffalo is a community-led resource center, a team of cooperative business
developers and educators, and a community-controlled non-extractive loan fund. Started in
2016, we mobilize workers to achieve economic security through cooperative business
ownership, generating wealth and power in communities most affected by inequality.
About Farmer Pirates Compost:

Farmer Pirates Compost is a leading composting company in Buffalo, NY, committed to diverting
organic waste from landfills and transforming it into nutrient-rich compost for local farms and
gardens. With a passion for environmental sustainability and community engagement, Farmer
Pirates Compost is transitioning to a worker cooperative model to empower its employees and
foster a more equitable business structure.

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US Hispanics are now the largest ethnic minority in the United States numbering 54.2 million as of July 2014. Serving: Buffalo, Rochester, Fredonia, Niagara Falls, NY and Erie, PA. Outside our Market area: Visit our affiliate at:

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