The Co-operator | June 2022

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ation of the east end f e public ood c a fre o-op

board corner The Board has tasked our Member-Owner Participation (MOP) Committee with researching the feasibility of re-instituting some form of a volunteer program here at EEFC. The following is the statement that the committee recently presented to the Board explaining the rationale for such a program. The Board anticipates a lengthy initial community discussion period before any concrete steps might be taken, should such reinstatement emerge as the choice of our membership. This kind of communal discussion did not occur in 2014, prior to the Board’s decision at that time to terminate the existing program, and a more robust, open process is anticipated. The Board urges member-owners to fully engage in this discussion. While the committee is still in its initial research phase, member-owners who would like to contribute their ideas are encouraged to do so at our monthly EEFC Board meetings, at the monthly MOP Committee meetings, or through the Board’s contact information available on the EEFC website.


Members of the MOP committee believe a revitalized volunteer program has the potential to strengthen our Co-op and our wider community. Offering volunteer opportunities encourages members to participate more fully, including voting in board elections, serving on committees, and participating in other governance-related activities, which has the potential to create a more robust member-owner democracy. Volunteer programs can generate a greater sense of community among members and staff. And members who volunteer are more likely to feel and behave like owners, who are committed to our Co-op’s health and survival.

We recognize specific benefits for offering a discount to volunteers. Especially during these times, many members and potential members need discounted prices to be able to afford healthy products. A volunteer discount can provide an incentive to get involved. By making shopping more affordable and participation in Co-op governance more attractive, we can draw from a more diverse group of member-owners —including some who might not tend toward involvement at a deeper level without the kinds of relationships that can develop through volunteer participation. And current and potential member-owners who wouldn’t personally volunteer will know they are part of an organization that actively supports the health and well-being of fellow members. 2

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022

board corner We also see potential financial benefits to the Co-op. Volunteers would assist the staff with their extra hands and expertise. And offering a volunteer program will attract new members. Because volunteering promotes greater involvement, we may attract new members who will become loyal, long-term shoppers. Finally, we think a volunteer program can benefit the region’s food system. Depending on how the program is structured, members may have opportunities to support local farmers and other producers directly. Growing our membership by providing an attractive volunteer program will ultimately increase the region’s resilience by addressing food justice and sustainability. We note that when we asked in the 2020 MOP-created survey if members wanted opportunities to volunteer, close to 200 responded affirmatively. We also note that volunteer programs have historically been part of the co-op model. We are currently researching other co-ops volunteer programs. We recognize potential negative issues. A volunteer program poses an administrative burden. Volunteers may be less reliable than paid workers. For those reasons, the program could have a financial downside, over and above the cost of providing discounts. Some co-ops have ended their volunteer programs because of Department of Labor concerns. Our union might ask for constraints on the program.

However, with cooperation among all groups, we feel that all these issues could be resolved. We feel that the long-term benefits of increased member-owner engagement with one another, staff, and the broader Western PA food system will lead to a stronger sense of belonging and loyalty to the East End Food Co-op. We believe the financial costs of a program would be outweighed by the resulting benefits of building a more robust EEFC community. Tom Pandaleon Vice President, Board of Directors The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022


A Moment with

maura It’s growing season! Seedlings are here at the Co-op, and so is the soil that you need to amend your garden. New seedlings are arriving every week, so be sure to keep a close eye on the racks as you pass them coming into the store. My oldest child decided that they wanted their own garden to manage this year. This past weekend together, we built him his own bed and tried to protect it as much as we could against the critters that love to raid our gardens. He decided that he wanted to grow okra and corn, and lots of flowers and a few herbs — quite diversified for his first attempt! Hopefully, we will have a successful season for his first time, or at least learn a lot. His main goal is to make our yard more beautiful, so I think we will certainly achieve that! The Co-op has been busy this spring, as it typically is. We continue the long trek of expansion. Even as a very well-established co-op, these adventures are a good lesson in patience. Our co-op has been talking about this for so long at so many different times in our history that we are trying our best to be sure that when we do make our site announcement, we have a concrete location and plan for our new store. Trust is so essential in all relationships, and looking for the best site for the next thirty years of our co-op is not a task we take lightly, so please trust that we are working our hardest to make this happen. Capital campaign planning and development are still underway, and we should hopefully be launching our first attempt this fall and a second in spring of 2023. We will have a dedicated page on our website and frequent communications on all things expansion once we have the site secured. Member-owner sessions will be scheduled for input on the design and amenities of our new space, as well as information sessions to talk through the options and details of how you might be able to invest in the Co-op’s growth. The wait will be well worth it! I would like to thank our staff, without whom we would not have a co-op. Their tireless efforts in serving our community do not go unnoticed and are very much appreciated. Thank you to our member-owners and shoppers for your continued support. We will keep everyone updated on all changes as they are made. Until next time, happy summer! Maura Holliday, General Manager 4

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022

Would you like to get involved with the co-op? join a board committee The board convenes a number of committees, including Finance, Member-Owner Participation, Expansion, Resilience, Annual Meeting, Bylaws, and Board Perpetuation and Elections. These committees all play an important role in developing proposals and recommendations to strengthen the governance of our Co-op. For more information and to sign up to join a committee, contact

Management Team Maura Holliday

General Manager

Amber Pertz

Café Manager

Shawn McCullough Finance Manager

eric cressley

join the board

Front End Manager

Bring your vision and perspective to the co-op by joining our board of directors! If you’re excited about getting involved in the community and have a love for the co-op, we would love to see you run for the board. Running for candidacy will begin August 1 and end October 1. Our member-owners will then hold a vote deciding who will fill the seats we have open. Election will run October 1 through November 1. If you have the time and capacity please don’t be shy, we would love to have you!

Grocery Manager

Ian Ryan

Board of Directors Ariel Barlow ‘ 22 Laura a V lentine ‘ 22 Tom Pandaleon ‘ 22 fhbo pg uu Jenise Brown ‘ 23 Trevor Ring ‘ 23 Marty Seltman ‘ 23

Brian Alderman ‘ 24 Mia Sorada ‘ 24 Debi Johnson ‘ 24

The Co-operator is published by:

Opinions expressed are writers’ own and do not necessarily reflect Co-op policy.

East End Food Co-op 7516 Meade Street, Pittsburgh PA 15208 phone: 412-242-3598

The board meets online the third Monday of each month at 7 PM. Members are welcome to join virtually via e W bEx.

Elly Helgen, Editor Debi Johnson, Design & Layout

Jen Girty

HR Manager

Erin Myers

IT Manager

Tyler Kulp

Produce Manager

Elly Helgen

Marketing & Member Services Manager

The East End Food Co-op exists to enhance physical and social health to our community. To these ends, we will create: A sustainable memberowned business open to everyone; An ethical and resilient food infrastructure; A vibrant, dynamic community of happy, healthy people; A creative vision to transform the future. Locally printed by Banksville Express Printing with vegetable-based inks on recycled paper. © East End Food Cooperative 2022

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022



from a Seed Starter by Kiah Boudreau Head Seedling Production Assistant with Grow Pittsburgh at Garden Dreams, Co-op Member-Owner, and avid gardener

Generally, human beings have a hard time remembering that circumstances were once different and will be different again. As an exception to that rule, many people choose to start a seed in the depths of winter and, in so doing, trust that one day it will be warmer and sunnier. I love seeds because they are the promise of a new life. Even when seedlings are readily available for purchase, and despite the difficulties of seed starting, I enjoy watching my plant babies begin their life from a tiny, desiccated speck and blossom into a vibrant green being. My gardening journey began when I was young, transplanting seedlings with my dad into our rocky, shaded home garden. While the location was not ideal, I loved the time spent learning from him and creating vegetables that we would later use in dinners. My partner and I started our little garden by growing our seedlings on a rack wrapped in plastic sheeting. We quickly outgrew those shelves and built a little seedling room in our basement with as many grow lights as could fit! 6

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022

In my home garden, I have to contain my gardening excitement and adjust to the reality of an acre of land, and only two people to both do the work and eat the fruits and veggies. As the Head Seedling Production Assistant with Grow Pittsburgh at Garden Dreams, I get to let my seed flag fly and plant seeds every week from the beginning of March until the end of May. I'm able to plant hundreds of Juliet tomatoes, dozens of mouse melons, and thousands of basils! Interestingly, we also grow a basil — African Blue — which cannot be grown from seed, only from rooting cuttings from a plant. The natural world is a wonder, and it never ceases to amaze me. It’s these small wonders that keep me going during even the darkest of winter days. There is always hope for a new beginning.

A few tips and tricks for seed starting:

Don't let your husband make the potting soil, no matter how many books he has read about the subject. You don't need a professional setup for starting seedlings, but one necessity is some form of grow light. In our climate, we don't get enough sunlight in the early spring to start seeds on a window sill. Don't let your husband start hardening off the seedlings in April, even though the day is warm. Try to find a friend or family member to share seed packets with if you have a small growing space. Most seed packets have too many seeds for one person! There are also several seed swaps around the city in the spring. There are lots of options for starting seeds! Plastic pots, biodegradable pots, soil blocking — the list goes on. Find what works for you, and try new options every once in a while! Don't let your cats into the seedling room. The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022



Teresa Tao is a Community Partner and she offers 10% off initial consults to Co-op members.

The Most Important Nutrient You could say that water is the most important nutrient in the body — it is a foundation of nutritional therapy in my practice. Water transports nutrients, regulates body temperature, removes waste, flushes toxins, and does many other things in the body.

These other roles include: Maintaining normal electrical properties of cells Absorbing shocks to joints and organs Improving oxygen delivery to cells

Enabling the digestive process Lubricating/cushioning joints & bones Enabling cellular hydration

Moistening oxygen for easier breathing Preventing tissues from sticking

Improving cell-to-cell communications

Empowering the body’s natural healing process

As you can see, water has several functions, but our bodies can only produce a small amount (~8%) of our daily water needs, so we must get the majority of our daily water needs through what we eat and drink, which makes water an essential nutrient. Drinking enough water is crucial to do all of the above for our body to function properly down to a cellular level. Just like a plant, our cells can also perk up immediately after being watered. 8

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022

Most of us are Chronically Dehydrated While we know drinking water is essential, unfortunately, many Americans do not drink enough and live in a state of chronic dehydration, making it THE most common nutrient deficiency in the US. If our body’s water content drops by as little as 2%, early signs of dehydration can occur, and fatigue is most common. A drop of 10% will cause significant problems with digestion and the cardiovascular, immune, and musculoskeletal systems. And not to be grim, but losses greater than 10% can cause death.

early signs of dehydration:

signs of chronic dehydration: Back pain

Muscle cramps




Colitis Constipation

Darker urine


Joint pain

Dry mouth



Degradation in memory & concentration


Exercise asthma

Did you know?

You can survive about eight weeks without food but only days without water. Water makes up about 55-60% of our total body mass, which, in an average adult, amounts to about ten to thirteen gallons of water!

The good news is that there is a remedy! Drink clean water! The amount of water you should drink is individual to each person. It depends on various factors such as activity levels and if you’re drinking any diuretics such as coffee, fruit juices, or soda. As a guideline, you can aim for half your body weight in ounces per day. For example, a 150-pound person should aim to drink about 75 ounces of water a day. The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022


10 Tips for Drinking More Water and Staying Hydrated By Teresa Tao, NTP



Drink a glass of water as soon as you wake up in the morning and before your cup of coffee


Carry a dedicated water bottle around wherever you go throughout your day — some are as large as a gallon so you can fill up your daily intake


Sip water throughout the day, which allows for better absorption and use versus chugging a bunch of water at one time which can overwhelm the kidneys and end up lost as urine


drink water before you start to feel thirsty since thirst can be a sign of early dehydration


Use a mobile app to track your water intake, such as Water Reminder, Water Drink Reminder, and Water Tracker, or simply set an alarm on your phone to remind you


Drink coconut water, a.k.a. mother nature’s Gatorade, without all the added ingredients but packed full of electrolytes (electrolytes are minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, and sodium that help the body absorb and utilize water)


Use Concentrace Trace Mineral drops (can be found in aisle 5 in the Co-op) for electrolytes, especially if you’re using a reverse osmosis system, which depending on the system, can strip everything out of the water, including minerals, or add a pinch of unrefined sea salt or pink Himalayan sea salt to your water


Infuse and flavor your water with fruits, vegetables, and herbs to jazz it up — there are many possibilities, but I like lemon, lime, any kind of berry, cucumbers, mint, and basil.You could even muddle the fruit at the bottom of the glass


Instead of soda, naturally flavored sparkling mineral water can be a good step towards drinking more water, though be aware of any sneaky sweeteners


Incorporate some water-rich foods into your diet, such as watermelon, other melons, celery, cucumber, citrus fruits, carrots, bell peppers, and pineapple Drinking water can seem tedious, but it doesn’t have to be! Try some things and have fun - your body will thank you this summer and beyond.

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022



PFLAG envisions a world where diversity is celebrated and all people are respected, valued, and affirmed inclusive of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. Our mission is to build on a foundation of loving families united with LGBTQ+ people and allies who support one another, and to educate ourselves and our communities to speak up as advocates until all hearts and minds respect, value, and affirm LGBTQ people.

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Dr ly yb ota n ical b ubb i n lavender

"Great for mixing but also stands alone well!"


utti c uties

"Just the right amount of sweetness!"

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022


easy camp camp snacks snacks easy nachos nachos Throw some chips into a pie tin, sprinkle with cheese and cover with tin foil. Place near hot coals for a short while until cheese is melted.

Pigs in in a a blanket blanket Pigs Place a fully cooked hotdog (or veggie dog) on a roasting stick, wrap an uncooked crescent roll around it and hold over the fire, turning until lightly browned.

Make your your own own Make trail mix! mix! trail Have fun and personalize snack time! This is a great activity the whole family can enjoy. swing by the bulk department and make up your own unique trail mixes so you are always ready for an adventure. Try adding: banana chips, peanuts, sesame sticks or granola for added crunch.

Vegetable, meat, & fruit kebabs Slice up ingredients and place on skewers. roast over the fire or place on tin foil and set on the grill.

quesadillas Spritz pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle garlic salt in a hot pan, place tortilla in, sprinkle half with cheese and anything extra, fold over and cook, flip once that side is done and enjoy!

foil meals Chop up carrots, potatoes, and onions. Place vegetables and ground beef (or alternative) in tin foil. Wrap tightly and place on hot coals (make sure the fire has died down or have a separate area for the coals) and cook until meat is cooked through and vegetables are tender. 12

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022

employees of the month



assistant cafÉ manager

Front End Manager on Duty

“I have worked at the Co-op for over 3 years! I love lemon pepper tofu sandwiches and I promise we will make more of them someday. In my free time, I like to play guitar, and play fetch with Pete (dog) and Edie (cat).” With his easy-going nature and willingness to pitch in, Luke sure makes the Co-op a better place!

A staple in the Front End for nearly 6 years now, Carrie is known for her reliability, kindness, and hardworking nature. Outside of work, you may find her mountain biking, reading, gardening, running or doing yoga. One of her favorite things about the Co-op is the drinks selection, especially the kombucha!

The Co-operator | The Newsletter of East End Food Co-op | June 2022



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