One practice in particular deserves more attention in the United States cooperative community: the use of indivisible reserves (IR). The International Co-operative Alliance (ICA) specifies IR as a component of its 3rd cooperative principle: “member economic
participation.” This co-op principle addresses several financial policies,
including allocation of surpluses or residual earnings. A few alternative uses
of surpluses are recommended, such as distribution of member dividends and
“….setting up reserves, part of which, at least, would be indivisible” (ICA).