The research, commissioned by the Wales Co-operative Centre, also shows that nearly half (48 per cent) of those questioned had used the services of a co-operative before, with the vast majority of those (89 per cent) saying they knew it was a co-operative when using it. Approximately a quarter (26 per cent) of respondents said a service provider's status as a co-operative, was a factor in their decision to use them.
Simon Harris, Chief Executive of the Wales Co-operative Centre, is encouraged by the findings: 'The study shows that public knowledge of co-operatives is embedded in Welsh society. In this country, it is clear that we appreciate the wider value of co-operatives and that many of us choose to purchase goods and services with ethical options in mind. However, it is important that we maintain and even build upon current awareness levels to help develop the next generation of co-operatives, whatever their objectives or field of interest may be. The social economy, while not infallible, is a valuable resource to us as we work to come out of a recession.'
Dr Gary Packham, Director for Enterprise, University of Glamorgan commented, 'The University of Glamorgan is delighted to have undertaken this work on behalf of the Wales Co-operative Centre. It is evident that co-operatives form an important part of the social and economic landscape within Wales, and the University remains committed to working in partnership with key organisations to raise the profile and support the development of co-operatives and social enterprises within Wales.'