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‘Anti-Profit’ College Restaurant Struggles for Survival

‘Anti-Profit’ College Restaurant Struggles for Survival

“Since the beginning, we have been a non-hierarchical business”

The left keeps trying socialism because it’ll work one of these days, right? This place has somehow managed to stay afloat since 1976 but now they’re having trouble.

The College Fix reports:

‘Anti-profit’ college restaurant seeks donations from its ‘comrades’ to stay alive

One of the oldest student-owned food cooperatives in America is crowdfunding to stay afloat, according to an impassioned plea for donations.

Its mortal enemy? Popular and profitable organic-food chains. Its salvation? Protecting students from the unsafe world of a Washington, D.C. suburb.

Established in 1976, the Maryland Food Collective is an “anti-profit” restaurant on the University of Maryland-College Park campus, specializing in affordable and healthy vegetarian and vegan-friendly food.

Unlike traditional capitalist restaurants, the UMD students who work at the co-op share an equal role in operating the business, and there are “no bosses or managers,” only “people working for a space that maintains equality,” according to the crowdfunding page.

“Since the beginning, we have been a non-hierarchical business run by our democratic collective process,” the co-op website states.

Referring to customers as “comrades” on social media and offering a “safe space” for its patrons, the co-op appears to be well-liked among students who appreciate its equal distaste for profit and meat: They have poured in nearly $8,500 as of Wednesday night.


Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.


WHAT? No bacon!

Morons. Profits allow you to do things like remodel, expand, maintain equipment, replace equipment and ensure employees are paid.

David in Cal | July 7, 2017 at 12:24 pm

In fairness, they have existed for 40 years, so they must be doing a lot of things right.

    My completely wild guess would be, in the beginning they were non-profit, not “anti-profit”. There’s a world of difference.

    For non-profits, any surplus funds go to improve the business (remodel, expand, maintain, etc.), a rebate for members (if they have memberships), or lower prices. The idea is to keep the doors open but break even overall.

    My guess would be they transitioned (probably under a different management) to an anti-profit at some point. Anti-profits are so scared of — or ideologically opposed to — making money that they tend to deliberately operate firmly in the red, and rely on donations to keep it running. Unfortunately, if their facilities are sub-standard or stuff breaks, donations are slim, so they can’t make improvements or repairs, so facilities become more sub-standard, so donations become more slim….

    People will overlook ideology and pay more elsewhere — even *gasp!* contribute to the profit-driven capitalists! — if they can get better facilities or better service. Shocker, I know.

    You can run a successful long-term business as a non-profit, but an anti-profit is, by definition, a death spiral.

    Anyway, that’s my guess.

Perhaps it is failing because no one can stand the taste of socialism.