Things you probably didn’t know about the campus Co-Op

Insider info from an employee


You probably think you know the campus Co-Op pretty well. If you lived on campus in your first year, you will have been popping in multiple times a week, or even in a day. If you live off-campus, the meal deal is probably your guiding light. The Co-Op serves thousands of students daily.

There’s more to the store than meets the eye. Behind those 10 doughnuts for £1 and those beautiful veggie breakfast Bagelman bagels is the work of more than 90 staff, and that’s just the tip of the cheese twist.

Did you know that there are only six hours in a day when no staff are in store, or that a maple and pecan plait contains nearly 500 calories? The Tab has already released a list of interesting trivia concerning East Slope bar and Falmer Bar, so it’s only fair that the Co-Op gets a shout out.

The first staff come in at 6am, the last leave at around midnight

Because the store opens its doors at 7am every day, when most students are still in bed, a handful of staff have to come in for 6am, including a baker.

The store shuts at 11 each night, but staff stay behind for almost another hour to sweep, clean, and tidy the shelves. This means that if you study and work on the same day, you could come onto campus for 9am, and not get home until gone midnight, or come in for work at 6am and not leave until 6pm.

Not all of the staff are students

There are over 90 staff on the books, and while the majority are Sussex students who work part-time, recent grads and full-time employees who may have never been to university also make up part of the staff.

Part-time student staff do not get a staff discount

The face of someone who just paid £2.20 for an iced coffee.

Before you complain about the price of your pizza to the staff, remember that we have to pay the same as you, unless we have an NUS card. If our colleagues try and slip us a cheeky discount, we will be in big trouble.

We typically sell over 400 croissants each weekday

Get a cinnamon swirl instead.

The mighty croissant is not just a morning treat for the students of Sussex; it is a day-round staple. At 2 for £1, these flaky pastries fly off the shelves round-the clock faster than any other bakery pastry, but you’ve probably never considered how many we sell in a day. This is why we barely ever have any hot croissants later in the day.

Other than bread, the only vegan items in the in-store bakery are jam doughnuts and glazed ring doughnuts

Vegans, you’re welcome for the info.

The store hasn’t always been in Bramber House

The campus convenience store used to be beneath the reception and security office in York House, which is now a printing unit. Co-Op won the spot in Bramber in 2010. Lucky residents of York House used to be able to go shopping in pyjamas without leaving their halls.

Students have asked for an Aldi instead

Last March, students set up an online petition calling for Co-Op to be replaced with an Aldi store. The petition gained 250 signatures in a day, and 534 overall. The SU have an agreement with The Southern Co- Operative, and the Co-Op brand themselves as ethical, so the petition fell flat.

The store will be remodelled over Easter

Over Easter, the shelves will get taller, and the products will be shifted around. This will mean more of the stock that sells quickly, less of the stock which sells slowly, and that some lines will be cut. The store will be remodelled over Easter Sunday, and will open looking fresh the next day.