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Weekly Newsletter – 5/13/10

FRESH! We have lovely Waldron Island produce—spring greens from Nootka Rose on Tuesday and from Blue Moon today. Did you know you can cook those radish greens like spinach or put them in soup? Moss-on-Earth brings us organic eggs from Waldron every two weeks. I went to the IGFC slaughter at Clyde and Ruth’s place on Tuesday. Lots of lamb and goat and beef, available at the Farmers’ Market, various farm stands, and our very own “little market in town.” Check the website to learn about the remarkable USDA mobile processing unit owned by the Island Grown Farmers Cooperative: http://www.igfcmeats.com/2.html With this mobile unit, happy and healthy animals grown on grass right here on the island can be slaughtered peacefully on the farm with their farmers at their sides. This practice makes better meat for you.

EXTRA: Though I didn’t make an order this week, Lopez Creamery dropped off a LOT of ice cream. Honor your friends and neighbors and kin—one of every twelve people must have a birthday this month. I hope we suffer days and days of warm planting weather and we all need to be fueled by ice cream!

TRUCK: Yesterday we had a surprise visit from David Bauermeister, Executive Director of the Northwest Agriculture Business Center in Mt. Vernon and Board member of our Agricultural Guild. On his way to the meeting he helped us unload the UNFI truck! I put a bug in his ear about identifying a distributor who can deliver things from the mainland on a weekly basis, preferably with refrigeration.

UPDATES: Anna rearranged the top drawer of the file cabinet to make it easier for all you member/owners to do your co-op housekeeping. You will now find files with receipts for restocking the clipboards when they’ve run out, plus instructions for making more at Printonyx, new copies of bottle deposit sign-ups and back records, new member applications and information, volunteer information and incentives plus contact names, minutes of board meetings and information, invoices paid and pending, farm and producer information, wholesale ordering instructions, and so on.

ALSO! New Payment Routine starts in ten days: As any sensible person would realize, the payments and receipts never, ever match up. Checks are easy, but cash is untraceable. So Anna wants to combine them to protect her sanity. With reusable envelopes you will submit both the receipt (including your name) and payment together in a new and bigger box. Don’t seal them or write on them because we will reuse them—over and over. If you pay with cash you’ll have to come prepared with a variety of paper money when you shop. I hope this extra trouble works to balance accounts finally.

BOARD MEETING: You might have noticed your Co-op is cramped. Our lease is up the end of August and the Board is stirring to the task of investigating larger spaces. If you know of something good, please tell us about it! In order to make the move we need to demonstrate the support of the membership—volunteer and financial commitment. We’ll bring it to a vote at the Annual meeting June 23, so mark your calendar. There’s also a volunteer incentive program in the works to be voted on.

WEBSITE: Try it—it would be wonderful if it saw more use, especially now that a move is in the air and we need to share ideas on the forum page. A lot of the gathering of information about preferred locations, willingness to work to make it happen, how we might deal with 24/7 access, what a larger co-op means to members and volunteers, and so on could happen in the forum.

HELP: Holly and Steffi work in the tourist industry and are having to relinquish their open hour shifts soon. We badly need those two midday shifts filled, so please step forward and serve your co-op. There’s nothing tricky about it and most of us find it fun to play store. When the Board implements a modest incentive program regular volunteers will be offered a modest discount, so you might want to log some hours. There’s even a possibility for a high school student to earn elective credit for meaningful employment.

SMILE: I love it when indulgent pleasures inspire action. First there was the amazing Twin Brook chocolate milk; some folks with oddly happy/guilty/triumphant expressions make off with two bottles! Then the Salumi products I brought last Thursday vanished in a savory cloud. I’ll bring more when I get back over there in a couple weeks.

SNARL: When I brought in a load of beef Tuesday evening our co-op’s floor was crunchy with spillage and the desk was in total disarray, blooming with plastic bags on top of the mess >:-(

QUESTION: Does anyone want local and fresh Quail Croft goat milk at $5.50 a quart?

WHAT-THE….? How come folks stack glass bottles everywhere on top of each other instead of managing the crates? There are plenty of empty crates, and a stack of full ones in back of the store. Keep those bottles coming back—the tops of the coolers are full of empty crates so there must be 150+ bottles out there somewhere….

NEEDED: More hunter/gatherers! The co-op wants more local stuff, like salsa and hummus and jams and condiments, so anyone who’s interested is welcome to go out and find it! It should be retail permitted and cleared with “the Management,” of course. Is there a forager among us who might bring us berries and mushrooms and wild salad greens in season?

FILLING IN: Anna is leaving today for a family memorial in California. Somehow with extra volunteers pitching in, we’ll have her covered.

EVENT: As far as I know, Maureen is still hosting her second annual Chicken Coop Tour, loading in front of Compost-It at 1:30 on May 16. Ask about it at that store—it was a hoot last year!

Respectfully submitted,

– e.