At the co-op, we believe healthy food should be accessible and affordable.
Our Limited Income Membership Entry (LIME) program creates equitable opportunities to enjoy local, healthy and sustainable foods on a limited income. Why? Because everyone is welcome to shop at Mississippi Market, and we know that when someone is on a limited income, the barriers to healthy eating can be monumental. Ten percent of Minnesotans are food insecure or do not have reliable access to enough nutritious food. Everyone has a right to nutritious food, and we strive to manifest these values in our work as a community-owned natural foods grocery store.
Through our LIME program, we are actively reaching out to those in our community who are struggling to afford healthy food. This program reduces barriers to co-op membership for customers enrolled in financial assistance programs.
How does it work?
Anyone enrolled in financial assistance programs may qualify for LIME membership and the LIME discount. If you are already a Mississippi Market member and are enrolled in financial assistance, you may apply for the LIME discount.
Which financial assistance programs qualify someone for LIME?
Qualifying programs include SNAP/EBT, WIC, Social Security of Veteran Disability, Supplemental Security Income, Section 8 housing, Refugee Cash Assistance, Medical Assistance, and General Assistance.
If you qualify, there are two ways you can benefit from this program:
1. A 10% discount: Once you become a co-op member-owner, or if you are one already, the LIME discount gives you access to 10% off your groceries every time you shop.
For example: If you are over the age of 62, are already a member, and receive SSD — you qualify for the LIME discount. Stop in and sign up to begin receiving your 10% discount.
Another example: If you are a parent enrolled in the WIC program and are not a member of Mississippi Market — you qualify for both the LIME membership and discount. Stop in to purchase your membership at the co-op for $12 and begin receiving the 10% discount on your groceries every time you shop.
2. A $12 membership: If you’re not a member-owner of the co-op already, you can purchase a membership for only $12. Remaining payments are made with earned patronage dividends until the full $90 co-op membership payment is reached, meaning no additional out-of-pocket payments are necessary.
How do patronage dividends work for a LIME membership?
Patronage dividends (also known as patronage refunds) are your share of the co-op’s profits distributed back to you; or, in the case of a LIME membership, back into your member account until $90 is reached. After the close of our fiscal year (June 30), our board reviews the co-op’s financials and if we’ve had a profitable fiscal year, they’ll decide what amount is appropriate to be retained and what amount is distributed to member-owners. For LIME members, you likely will not receive cash patronage dividends the first few years or more of your membership, depending on how often you shop and if the co-op is profitable.
Which member benefits can I access as a LIME member?
- Save at local, independent Saint Paul businesses through our Community Partner Program.
- Save on weekly Owner Deals — sales just for member-owners.
- Enjoy member discounts on classes and special orders.
- Vote for our board of directors and apply to run for a board seat. Use your voice to impact positive change!
How does LIME membership renewal work?
Your $12 LIME membership remains yours even if you no longer qualify for the 10% discount. (For example, you’d no longer qualify for the discount if you end your enrollment in a government financial assistance program.) The 10% discount must be renewed between December and January each year to ensure the discounts are going to those who need them most.