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Co-op Member Patronage Refund Watch Your Mailbox! Board of Directors Declares

PATRONAGE REFUND! ROGER ELDRIDGE, BOARD TREASURER or more than three decades La Montañita Food Co-op has honored our commitments to our members and our communities, including the member patronage refund. Despite the challenging economic environment, the Co-op completed its 2011-2012 fiscal year on August 31, 2012, with sound operational and financial results. The Board therefore anticipates our 23rd annual member patronage refund.



As a La Montañita member, you are an owner of the cooperative. The patronage refund is that part of net earnings returned to members in direct proportion to the amount of their Co-op purchases over the year. Since the patronage refund was initiated in 1990, La Montañita has returned more than 3.4 million dollars to our members. We are pleased that this year’s financial performance will once again permit us to add to this total. Patronage refunds are unique to cooperatives. The traditional investment model provides a financial return based on the size of the investment. Cooperatives, too, start with an investment (for example, annual membership dues), but base the financial return (patronage refund) on each member’s yearly purchases. The more a member shops at the Co-op, the greater the refund. The cooperative investment model is accessible to all, sustainable, and supports the entire community rather than a small group of investors. The Co-op exists for the benefit of its members and in return members take responsibility for the health of the Co-op by paying dues and buying groceries. The 2012 Annual Report (see the October Co-op Connection newsletter) described in general terms the financial challenges and successes of this last year. Upon completion of the final accounting review and financial adjustments, the Board of Directors announced the exact amount of this year’s patronage refund at its November 20 meeting. The overall patronage refund includes two parts: 1) A cash refund to members, and 2) A portion retained for the Co-op as equity.

This year’s cash refund is anticipated to be 1.30% of member sales, up from last year’s 1.12%. The retained portion is used to fund capital expenditures—major items like new equipment or improvements necessary to keep our facilities in good condition—and each year’s amount is based on upcoming needs. This year’s retained portion is anticipated to be 1.13% of member sales, compared to last year’s 1.80%. Equity is how you as owners provide financial capital to the Co-op, keeping us strong and able to provide the range of services and programs that are important to the membership. This is one way in which the Co-op is able to weather the credit crunches that cripple other businesses. Co-op services and programs set us apart from other natural foods markets. Instead of earnings being sent away to out-of-state investors, we invest those earnings in our local communities. We have members donating time in public schools and nearly 50 other community organizations in Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Gallup. Our members deliver groceries to seniors and homebound people and provide the essential help that makes our Earth Day, Garden Party and other events so successful. For their donated time these members receive a shopping discount; it results in slightly lower net earnings for the Co-op, but fulfills our goal of adding value to our communities. This is an example of another cooperative difference: the multiple bottom line, based not just on dollars, but on social and environmental concerns as well. Programs like the Co-op Distribution Center (the cornerstone of our regional FoodShed Project), the La Montañita Fund (Co-op member investors pooling resources to provide affordable loans for local producers) and the Veteran Farmer Project are all thriving and improving every day. Each of these programs demonstrates how all of us—local farmers, ranchers, producers, retailers, consumers, local businesses and organizations—can help ourselves through these tough economic times by sharing and supporting the cooperative business model as a real alternative to the corporate model. La Montañita is acknowledged nationally as a leader in establishing innovative and workable programs in food distribution and grassroots community investing.

18th Annual make a child


Look for the Annual Holiday Giving Trees at all CO-OP locations beginning Dec. 1

Return gifts to your CO-OP by Monday, December 17


make it

happen! The Board understands that maintaining such ambitious programs can impact your patronage refund check. The power of cooperation that comes from balancing our multiple bottom lines and pooling our financial resources enables the creation of something better than any of us can do alone. Together we can turn our values into concrete benefits for the whole.

You OWN it! When you think about your La Montañita Co-op, think about being an owner of a local business, because that is exactly what you are. You reap the benefits of a natural foods grocery store every day and you can look forward to a financial return on your purchases from our past fiscal year operations while making a solid investment in the future of the cooperative you own. Congratulations to us all for another great year at the Co-op! Watch YOUR Mailbox! Your La Montañita Food Co-op Patronage Refund check will be mailed in mid-December. Checks will be issued to all members who receive a patronage refund of $5 or more. If you were a member in good standing from September 1, 2011, to August 31, 2012, and do not receive a check, please visit any Co-op location information desk... it may be that your refund is less than $5. If that is the case, we will look up your membership account and issue you a store credit or cash refund on the spot. If you have moved and have not yet updated your address, please do so immediately. Watch your home mailbox for your Patronage Refund check in December.

Creating Solutions: Donate Your Patronage Dividend BY ROBIN SEYDEL he economic downturn has been especially difficult for the non-profit organizations in our community. In this environment every little bit helps to maintain the good and important work of these organizations, so critical to our community’s well-being.

There are basically two ways in which you can donate your patronage refund to support the work of non-profit organizations in our community. You may, of course, sign over the check to the organization of your choice. Just endorse it to that organization and give it directly to them. This is the very best way, as it goes directly to the organization of your personal choice.

Every year the Co-op supports a variety of non-profit organizations (see a partial list of this year’s organizations that received donations on page 3).

Or you can just refrain from cashing your patronage refund check. However, if you do this the Co-op must report the unclaimed patronage as income to the IRS, who will take its cut. This will happen unless you specifically write PLEASE DONATE when you endorse your check and bring it back to your favorite Co-op location’s info desk. All unclaimed patronage monies are donated by La Montanita Co-op to the many and varied organizations that request our support throughout the year. Visit our website for a list of our community partners.


This year alone Co-op members have volunteered over 5,000 hours in a wide variety of worthy non-profit and educational organizations as part of our Community Capacity Building Programs. Additionally, the Co-op donates thousands of dollars in food for fundraising events to hundreds of groups throughout the year. Some of these donation funds are allocated in our annual organizational budget as part of our commitment to the co-op principle of “concern for community.” Some of these funds come from the patronage dividend checks that are not cashed by our members. DONATE your Patronage Dividend Check to a worthy non-profit organization!


Co-op Holiday Festivites! Join us at all our Co-ops for holiday festivities, natural foods samplings, craft fairs, music, friends and fun. And don’t forget to take an ornament off our Make a Child Smile Holiday Giving Trees, up at all locations December 1, and make the season brighter for a child in need. Sat., Dec. 1: Nob Hill Co-op, 4-6PM In conjunction with the Nob Hill Shop and Stroll, activities and entertainment at the Co-op include: 4PM: Mosaic Woodwind Trio 4:30PM: The Loren Kahn Puppet Theater, for children of all ages 5PM: Stu McAskie piano, jazz and holiday favorites

Sat., Dec. 15: Santa Fe Co-op, 12:30-5PM 12:30PM: David Dean 1:30PM: Holy Water and Whiskey 2:30PM: Mosaic Woodwind Quintet 4PM: Carlos Aguirre Trio Sat., Dec. 16: Valley Co-op, 1-4PM Annual Holiday Local Crafts and Gift Fair in the Valley Co-op Parking Lot 1PM: Cello Classico 2PM: Los Trinos 3PM: Tradicion Mariachi


Other Important

Seasonal Dates

December 17: Giving Tree gift return deadline December 24: All Co-ops close early at 6pm December 25th: All Co-ops are closed New Year’s Eve: Regular hours at all stores New Year’s Day: Co-op hours are 8am-9pm

got the


La Montanita Cooperative A Community - Owned Natural Foods Grocery Store Nob Hill/ 7am-10pm M-S, 8am-10pm Sun. 3500 Central SE Abq., NM 87106 265-4631 Valley/ 7am-10pm M-Sun. 2400 Rio Grande Blvd. NW Abq., NM 87104 242-8800 Gallup/ 10am-7pm M-S, 11am-6pm Sun. 105 E. Coal Gallup, NM 87301 863-5383 Santa Fe/ 7am-10pm M-S, 8am-10pm Sun. 913 West Alameda Santa Fe, NM 87501 984-2852 UNM Co-op ’N Go/ 7am-6pm M-F, 10-4pm Sat. Closed Sun., 2301 Central Ave. SE Abq., NM 87131 277-9586 Cooperative Distribution Center 901 Menual NE, Abq., NM 87107 217-2010 Administrative Staff: 217-2001 TOLL FREE: 877-775-2667 (COOP) • General Manager/Terry Bowling 217-2020 • Controller/John Heckes 217-2029 • Computers/Info Technology/ David Varela 217-2011 • Perishables Coordinator/Bob Tero 217-2028 • Human Resources/Sharret Rose 217-2023 • Marketing/Edite Cates 217-2024 • Membership/Robin Seydel 217-2027 • CDC/MichelleFranklin 217-2010 Store Team Leaders: • Mark Lane/Nob Hill 265-4631 • John Mulle/Valley 242-8800 • William Prokopiak/Santa Fe 984-2852 • Alisha Valtierra/Gallup 575-863-5383 Co-op Board of Directors: email: • President: Martha Whitman • Vice President: Marshall Kovitz • Secretary: Ariana Marchello • Treasurer: Roger Eldridge • Lisa Banwarth-Kuhn • Kristy Decker • Jake Garrity • Susan McAllister • Betsy VanLeit Membership Costs: $15 for 1 year/ $200 Lifetime Membership Co-op Connection Staff: • Managing Editor: Robin Seydel 217-2027 • Layout and Design: foxyrock inc • Cover/Centerfold: Co-op Marketing Dept. • Advertising: Sarah Wentzel-Fisher • Editorial Assistant: Sarah Wentzel-Fisher 217-2016 • Printing: Vanguard Press Membership information is available at all four Co-op locations, or call 217-2027 or 877-775-2667 email: website: Membership response to the newsletter is appreciated. Address typed, double-spaced copy to the Managing Editor, Copyright ©2012 La Montanita Co-op Supermarket Reprints by prior permission. The Co-op Connection is printed on 65% post-consumer recycled paper. It is recyclable.

December 2012 2

18th Make a Child Smile

GIVING TREE A Season of Cooperation and Caring or many of us this has been a difficult year. If our difficulties have a positive side it is the recognition that true shelter from life’s storms are found in cooperation with and caring for one another.


For 18 years, you, our Co-op community, have acted on this understanding and through our annual Giving Tree Project, during each holiday season, you have shared your resources and helped fulfill the holiday needs and wishes of children experiencing hardships in our communities. This year we are once again asking for your help in letting some very special children and families know that we, as a community, will, despite tough economic times, continue to be there for one another. Last year alone we made the holiday wishes of approximately 600 children in protective custody and foster care a reality. Over the years, you, our loyal Co-op members and shoppers, our staff and child advocates from participating agencies have, through this program, provided for the needs of thousands of children. When I think about what we have done together it restores my faith in humanity, reminds me of the power of cooperation and gives me hope for the future. We sincerely hope you will help us do so again.

Once again this year the Co-op is honored to be working with some of our communities’ most dedicated organizations: New Mexico Department of Children, Youth and Families, Peanut Butter and Jelly Day School, and Enlace Communitario. Again this year sustainably grown and harvested trees, (purchased from Delancy Street’s addiction recovery program) filled with ornaments each bearing the name, age and holiday wish of a child from these organizations, will go up at each Co-op location by December 1. To all of you who have participated; the social workers at all the agencies, many of whom have been with this project since its inception, Co-op staff, and each and every one of you, who throughout the years has taken an ornament off the tree, found the time during this busy season to share your resources and find that special gift that will “Make a Child Smile,” from the bottom of my heart, I thank you all. I hope you will find the time and resources to do so again this year. If this is your first Co-op holiday season we hope you will help “Make a Child Smile” with your participation. WITH LOVE, ROBIN SEYDEL


Peanut Butter and Jelly Day School For well over 35 years, PB&J Family Services, Inc., has been working to keep children safe and help families survive. PB&J continues to pioneer innovative approaches to the prevention of child abuse and neglect, and the preservation of the family through interactive parenting and bonding programs in its Peanut Butter & Jelly Therapeutic Preschools, in home-based programs and in its TEENS program at the Cuba, NM, High School—focusing on breaking the often-generational cycle of family dysfunction. In a program that serves children with an incarcerated parent at one of four New Mexico prisons; PB&J works to break the cycle of crime. Often angry and feeling abandoned, these children are six to eight times more likely to be imprisoned than other youngsters. Other programs work with middle and high school youth in the South Valley through the KidPACT program. More than 80 percent of the families PB&J works with make progress toward meeting their goals. PB&J’s programs are so successful that with governmental support they are in the process of expanding to serve new communities. Your gift helps them have a holiday season to remember. Mil gracias! For further information you may contact Donna Brew at 505877-7060. Enlace Comunitario Enlace Comunitario (EC) works with Latino immigrants to eliminate domestic violence and strengthen community. For over 15 years EC has created a dynamic continuum of services for both victims of domestic violence and their children including: safety planning; assessment; individual and group counseling; referrals to services (housing, health, financial, etc.); parenting and life-skills classes; legal advocacy; economic development, crisis intervention and community education. EC’s innovative approach goes beyond providing services to include advocacy, leadership development and community organizing projects to make long-term systemic changes and strengthen community.

Return gifts to the CO-OP by December 17!

Domestic violence affects families from all backgrounds. Unfortunately, women from immigrant communities are often at greater risk and are less likely to access needed services. They face cultural and language barriers to police and social services, increased threats of becoming separated from their children through deportation or international child abduction, less access to public benefits and less awareness of their plight by churches, schools and the community at large. Please contact them at 246-8972 with questions or if you want to support Enlace. New Mexico Department of Children, Youth and Families Bernalillo County Child Protective Services (CPS) is a division of the New Mexico’s Children Youth and Families Department (CYFD). CYFD receives hundreds of reports every month regarding abuse or neglect of children. And while the mainstream media reports the problems now and again, the thousands of children helped by CYFD generally goes unreported. Social workers investigate allegations and when needed intervene with families to ensure the safety of children. This intervention may consist of crisis counseling, referrals to community resources, or other community supports, or in worst-case scenarios the Department requests custody of the children. Children in CYFD custody are placed in a licensed foster home. Foster parents give temporary care to children while they are in CYFD custody, providing a protective and safe home, structure, nurturing, and assistance in preparing the child to return to his/her home or to be adopted. In New Mexico everyone is mandated by law to report child abuse, neglect or exploitation. To report child abuse or neglect please call: Metro Area, 841-6100 or Statewide 1-800-797-3260. Bernalillo County has a group of dedicated foster families, but the need is greater than the number of available families. If you feel you could provide a safe home for children in CYFD custody, please call Foster a Future, at 1-800-432-2075. Working together we can make a difference in a child's life.


Giving Trees go up Dec. 1


• Trees will go up at ALL Co-op locations by December 1 • The ornaments have wish lists for each child, allowing you to choose a gift you will enjoy giving and they will enjoy receiving. Please put your name and ornament number on the sheets attached to the giving tree at each store in case you lose the ornament. • Please return the gifts to the Co-op by Monday, December 17, so we can get them back to the agencies and to the children in time. Please, Please do honor this deadline. • Some families and foster families have more than one child in the program. When one child gets a gift and another does not (because an ornament is taken but a gift is not returned to the Co-op in time) it can be devastating for that child. • Please tape the “ornament” with the child’s name and agency on the gift. To protect the confidentiality and the identities of the children, each ornament has a code number on it. Taping the colored ornaments that have the agency name and an ornament code number to the top of the gift will help us get your gift to the right child.

FOR MORE INFORMATION contact Robin at 505-217-2027, toll free at 877-775-2667 or e-mail her at

got the


December 2012 3

PEGASUS: Protecting the Rights of

CHILDREN Bag Credit Donation of the Month


egasus Legal Services for Children is a non-profit agency that promotes and defends the rights of children and youth to safe and stable homes, quality education and healthcare, and a voice in decisions that affect their lives. The Pegasus legal team provides civil legal services to children, youth, and their caregivers, including direct representation, community legal education, and policy advocacy. Pegasus was founded in 2002 by two Albuquerque lawyers, Tara Ford and Liz McGrath, who had extensive experience representing children and youth in a variety of legal cases. Both attorneys had worked as lawyers for children and youth in foster care and had seen how these vulnerable children benefitted when they had a skilled lawyer advocate for them. The experiences of Ford and McGrath led them to believe that children and youth outside of the foster care system would also benefit from access to legal services. Pegasus was incorporated under New Mexico state law in April of 2002, and received its initial 501(c)3 determination letter in February 2003. Pegasus Legal Services for Children is a legal resource for children, youth, their caregivers and the community, concerning the legal rights and needs of children and youth. Pegasus provides a variety of services for children and for the community, including: Education Law: Pegasus provides legal representation to families seeking to enforce their children's right to appropriate public education. Pegasus prioritizes representation to families with children with disabilities. Pegasus also targets the educational needs of children in foster care.

Kinship Guardianship: Pegasus provides a range of legal services to kinship caregivers around the state. The Guardianship Legal Helpline, a project of Pegasus and Law Access New Mexico, is a statewide legal helpline that provides information, advice, and assistance to self-represented litigants in kinship guardianship cases. Pegasus also provides full service direct legal representation in contested guardianship cases in many parts of the state. Youth Law Project: The Pegasus Youth Law Project provides legal representation to youth ages 14-23 on a range of legal issues including family law for young parents, access to health and mental health care, and helping youth transition from foster care to adulthood. Pegasus prioritizes services to youth who are homeless, or transitioning from foster care. Child Abuse and Neglect: Pegasus represents children and youth in foster care as guardians ad litem for children up to age 14, and as attorneys for children 14 and older. Policy Advocacy: Pegasus works with policy makers to ensure that children's needs are addressed in areas such as access to public benefits including health and mental health care. Community Legal Education: Pegasus provides training and community legal education to the community throughout the year in a variety of settings. Speakers are available to come to schools, social service agencies, shelters, or any venue where children, youth and adults are interested in learning about the legal rights of children. For help or to make a donation please contact Pegasus Legal Services for Children: General Intake, 505-244-1101. GUARDIANSHIP OF A CHILD: Albuquerque: 505-217-1660, Statewide toll-free: 800-980-1165. 3201 Fourth Street NW, Albuquerque, NM 87107. Tel: 505-244-1101 Fax: 505-244-0060. Office hours are 8:30-5pm, Monday through Friday.



As a community-owned organization we feel it is part of our mission to support the community that supports the Coop. To that end the Co-op is continually looking for ways in which to help local organizations raise the funds they need to continue their work. Each year the Co-op gives tens of thousands of dollars in food donations to support fundraising efforts, free publicity in our newsletter and other help to many worthy nonprofit organizations and schools. Bag Credit Donations—Thanks to our shoppers’ environmental awareness and the many of you who bring your reusable shopping bags and donate your dime bag credit, between January 2012 and October 2012 (the last month we had numbers for at the time of this writing), together we raised $21,490.90 for worthy non-profit organizations around our state. Thanks for bringing your bags and donating your dime. This year we raised almost double the amount we raised last year, for a variety of organizations around the state. When we pool our resources we can do lots of good in our communities. Co-op SCRIP—With our Co-op SCRIP we are pleased to have supported a number of schools in the Albuquerque and Santa Fe area. The “Co-op SCRIP” program helps organizations raise money. Participating organizations make one dollar on every ten purchased as SCRIP, their supporters get to eat local and organic Co-op food and the Co-op has made a 10% donation to organizations doing good things in our community. Through this program the Co-op has donated thousands of dollars over the years to a variety of schools and other non-profits. Ongoing Community Support—All year long hundreds of organizations come to the Co-op for help and support in their



fundraising and educational efforts. Not including all the many schools in each community we regularly support, these are just a few of the organizations the Co-op has made donations to this year: Project Share, Keshet Dance Theater, Food Depot, Roadrunner Food Bank, Meals on Wheels, St. Elizabeth’s Shelter, Albuquerque Stroke Club, Blue Star Mothers of America, New Mexico Farmers Market Association, Creativity for Peace, Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless, Santa Fe Farmer’s Market Institute, Pegasus Legal Services for Children, Santa Fe Indy Film Fest, Crossroads for Women, Amigos Bravos, Rape Crisis Center, Tewa Women United, KUNM, KSFR, Peacecraft, Community AIDS Partnership, The Horse Shelter, Traditional Native American Farmers Association, Truth in Labeling, Center for Food Safety, Organic Consumers Association, National Hispanic Cultural Center, Wild Earth Guardians, Wise Fool, National Dance Institute, NM Commission on the Status of Women, ABQ Center for Peace and Justice, NM Department of Children Youth and Families, Planned Parenthood, Tesuque Pueblo Seed Sovereignty Project, Roots and Shoots, NAACP, NM AIDS Services, N.M. Wilderness Association, Santa Fe Watershed Association, 516 ARTS, National Indian Youth Leadership Association, Quivira Coalition, Trinity House, Community Faithlinks, The Open Space Alliance, Cancer Services of New Mexico, Cesar Chavez Foundation, Rio Grande Agricultural Land Trust, Vets for Peace, PFLAG, Rio Grande Community Farm, Dine Care, Southwest Pickers, Our Endangered Aquifer Working Group, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Center for Civic Policy, Outpost Performance Space, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Citizens for Alternatives to Radioactive Dumping, Battered Family Services, and Cooking with Kids, to name but a few!

BAG CREDIT ORGANIZATION OF THE MONTH: Pegasus Legal Services for Children. Promoting and defending the rights of children and youth to safe, stable homes, quality education, healthcare, and a voice in decisions that affect their lives. Your OCTOBER Bag Credit Donations of $2,009.40 went to RoadRunner Food Bank. THANKS TO ALL WHO DONATED!

Co-op Values Cooperatives are based on the values of self-help, selfresponsibility, democracy, equality, equity and solidarity. In the tradition of their founders, cooperative members believe in the ethical values of honesty, openness, social responsibility and caring for others. Co-op Principles 1 Voluntary and Open Membership 2 Democratic Member Control 3 Member Economic Participation 4 Autonomy and Independence 5 Education, Training and Information 6 Cooperation among Cooperatives 7 Concern for Community The Co-op Connection is published by La Montanita Coop Supermarket to provide information on La Montanita Co-op Supermarket, the cooperative movement, and the links between food, health, environment and community issues. Opinions expressed herein are of the authors and are not necessarily those of the Co-op.



ORGANIC GOAT CHEESE ROBIN SEYDEL ancy Coonridge has been making world-class goat cheese since 1981. Full of superior local flavor and power packed with nutrition in environmentally sound reusable packaging, Nancy says, “We are proving that wonderful taste and nutritional superiority doesn't have to come at the expense of the environment, our goats’ health, or our health. Besides promoting sustainable, non-chemical, non-factory farmed animal husbandry and cheese making we strive to always live in harmony with the natural world that supports us all.”


December 2012 4

THE GIFT OF GREAT LOCAL TASTE Going a step beyond grass fed, Coonridge does not ever use hormones, antibiotics or chemical wormers, are GMO free, grain free and wild fed on unpolluted rangeland. If there is too much rain or snow for them to go out


Nancy, her interns and her herd of Alpine, Nubian, La Mancha and Oberhasli dairy goats all live in the wilderness at 8,000 feet not far from the Continental Divide. The goats have a barn and barnyard to sleep in at night. Each morning after milking, the goats and their Maremma guardian dogs go off to enjoy their day free ranging in the rim rock country of western New Mexico. “When we say our goats ‘free range’ we do not mean they have a pasture, however large. We mean there are no fences and no human neighbors for miles and miles. Our goats go where they please with their Maremma guardian dogs as escorts. These fearless shepherd dogs protect the goats from many predators, including mountain lion, bear, coyote and reintroduced wolves. Maremmas were bred in the Italian Alps for wolf control.”

Staff of Life:

SAGE BAKEHOUSE BY ADAM FISCHLER, NOB HILL FRONT END age Bakehouse’s story is full of unlikely good fortune. Andree Falls and Amy Cox met in Dallas in the ’80s. Andree was successfully running a restaurant while Amy pursued a Master’s Degree. During Andree’s college years, in Paris (France), she’d fallen for artisan breads. The two wanted to move somewhere beautiful, and on investigation, determined Santa Fe was ripe for an artisanal bakery. They apprenticed with Michael London, a poetry professor-turned-master baker in New York, who himself had studied under multi-generational Jewish bakers. This explains their famous Rye Bread. They bought an oven from


a true GIFT!

Nancy and staff give them certified organic hay in their barn. This unique gourmet cheese has been certified organic since 1998, and has won numerous awards including: Farmer of the year from the New Mexico Department of Agriculture’s Organic Program several years ago when the agency was not yet a part of the NMDA and was known as the New Mexico Organic Commodity Commission.

France, opened the bakery in June 1996, and held tight through the coming 15-year storm of business. The response was overwhelming. They worked years of daily 18-hour shifts. In their first month they baked 100 pounds of bread. By December they were moving 1,000 pounds, and Christmas passed in a three-day sleepless haze.

A Gift that Keeps on Giving Coonridge Goat Cheese is a soft spreading cheese that comes in a 7.5 oz. glass jar and is covered with certified organic sunflower seed oil, certified organic extra virgin olive oil and certified organic herbs. Covering them cheeses with oil and herbs seals it from the air and allows the flavors to mingle. This is a traditional Mediterranean way of preserving cheese. Coonridge cheese can be stored in the refrigerator for months and months, even up to a year! You can also freeze and thaw, freeze and thaw without breaking the jar or changing the texture or flavor of the cheese. Serve at room temperature for full flavor! The lovely jars of Coonridge Goat Cheese make the perfect holiday gift paired with some crackers, and olives or fruit. It comes in a wide variety of flavors, including herbs and garlic, dried tomato, basil and garlic, black pepper and herbs, raw milk feta in garlic oil, flame roasted green chile, NM raspberry made with Heidi’s local organic raspberry jam, and many more. Look for Coonridge Goat Cheese in the cheese case of your favorite Co-op location.

DELICIOUS local food...

In terms of success, Sage has built its house at the crossroads. They distribute in Santa Fe and to Albuquerque and Taos six days a week, and Los Alamos four. Where many businesses keep an eye on new locations and farther distribution, Andree laughs, “We’re occupied.”

Rarely does bread achieve such alchemy, so solid, bright, fresh. The Farm Bread is rugged and hearty, the Sourdough almost satisfying & sweet in its sourness, and the Rye like it was baked for beloved guests. Because the crew is up and preparing at 4am for the Only nine months went by before next day’s bread, it arrives on Co-op their core staff started to form. shelves practically just baked. Forget butter and jam; Andree says they’ve since learned how to say “no.” they just get in the way. Though when the oven broke on Christmas Day 2007, “no” was about the last word they wanted Sage Bakehouse bread arrives at the Co-op in the contact with. They use the same oven still, held early morning, six days a week. Take a loaf home, or together with duct tape, impromptu parts, and love, to the office to share today. Though if you intend to capable of 450 loaves at one time. The bread sits share, I suggest two—you’ll thank me later. Paired directly on stone, and is steam-injected on three with some cheese and olives it makes the perdecks, from three sides. fect addition to any holiday party!


CO-OP DELI bakery delights! SUGAR AND SPICE


BY SARAH WENTZEL-FISHER hile some relish the labor of love that is baking for the holidays, others would prefer to skip the work and go straight to the eating and socializing. Baked goods abound during the holiday season; and offer warmth, comfort, and a delicious way to indulge. This year, Co-op delis offer a variety of ways to skip the kitchen time, and offer your friends and family (even those who are vegan or are gluten intolerant) scrumptious dessert options. Whether you’re hosting or attending a party, every Co-op deli offers easy, unique, and delectable dessert options for those who don’t have hours of kitchen time.


Beginning mid-December at the Rio Grande store, you can bring home a loaf of Stollen, a traditional German sweetbread made especially for Christmas time. A buttery yeast bread packed with raisins, almonds, candied orange peel and spices, Stollen makes a delicious breakfast or dessert. In addition, you will find unusual sweets like Divinity and peanut brittle, and more common desserts like iced cookies, pecan and pumpkin pies, and banana nut and pumpkin breads. Deck out the dessert table by placing an order at the deli today!

need the perfect

The Santa Fe deli offers gluten-free and vegan baked goods made to order, including pumpkin spelt bread, pumpkin and pecan pies, and green chile cornbread. Host a fabulous party and focus more on the decorations knowing your guests will be full and happy eating all the amazing sweet treats you picked up at the Co-op. At Nob Hill, you can find incredible coffeecakes made to feed a crowd. Don’t feel like making breakfast on Christmas or New Year’s Day? Having a Solstice party but your oven doesn’t hold a steady temperature? Place an order for a pear-apple cider or pumpkin-pecan coffee cake today. Beyond sweet treats, each Co-op deli can help you host your best holiday get-together ever! Check out the extensive and delicious catering menus listed in this issue of the Co-op Connection, (see the menus online at or call your nearest Co-op store today to find out what else your deli manager might have to offer. Plan your party today and place your orders soon!



gift certificates

From $10 and up, give the GIFT of great tasting healthy FOOD!

food &


December 2012 5

Hey! It’s Tamale


BY SARAH WENTZEL-FISHER or the past several years, around the end of December, I find myself at my friend Michelle Vogler’s house in her rather small kitchen, hip to hip with at least a dozen of my favorite people, working over a very steamy stove—it is tamale time. Tamales are the perfect winter food. The small, scrumptious parcels are an ideal way to stave off cold and hunger, while working on a rewarding cooking project in good company.


Transfer the pork to a cutting board and allow it to rest 20 minutes. Using two forks, shred the meat. In a bowl, combine 2 cups of the shredded pork with enough New Mexico red chile sauce to thoroughly moisten the meat. To assemble the tamales, spread about 1/4 cup masa onto

According to Alice Guadalupe Tapp, author of Tamales 101, tamales have been around for millennia, originating in Mesoamerica as a portable food for hungry armies in the field. Since their origin, cooks have creatively filled and wrapped these “masa filled pockets” with all number of edible items. But the basic tamale has persevered close to its original form—spicy meats or veggies, nestled in masa, and wrapped in a cornhusk. Making tamales is a multi-step, rather labor-intensive process. You begin by making a filling, ideally a slow cooked meat or veggie chile. Masa is mixed, and corn husks soaked to soften. Finally, the fun begins; spreading masa in the cornhusks, spooning a dollop of filling, and relearning the art of rolling and tying off the wrapper. Making tamales is an undertaking. For this reason they should be made in mass quantities by many people, preferably people you love. Making Tamales These pork and red chile tamales from ABQ Cuisine Expert Gwyneth Doland's cookbook Tantalizing Tamales are some of the most common tamales in the Southwest. They can be found in restaurants, cafés, and in coolers toted by strolling vendors. Everybody loves them, so make a bunch and freeze any leftovers. This recipe makes enough pork filling to make a second batch of tamales, but you can always just use the extra pork for burritos or freeze it for later use. 2 1/2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat 6 cloves garlic, peeled 1 teaspoon black peppercorns 2 bay leaves 1 teaspoon salt Water 4 cups red chile sauce About 2 pounds of masa At least 36 softened corn husks, plus 36 strips for tying Arrange the pork shoulder in a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed stockpot. Add the garlic, peppercorns, bay leaves and salt. Add enough cold water to cover by several inches. Bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for about 2 hours.

The BASIC TAMALE has been around for millennia and been PRESERVED in close to its original form!

the center of each corn husk. Spoon some of the shredded pork filling down the center of the dough. Fold and tie the tamale; repeat with the remaining ingredients and husks. Steam the tamales for 1 hour and serve slathered with the remaining New Mexico red chile sauce. Makes about 24 tamales. RECIPE COURTESY OF ABQ CUISINE EXPERT: Gwyneth Doland,

Mujeres en Accion


BY ROBIN SEYDEL Nothing says winter holidays like tamales and Mujeres en Accion has been making their tamales in Albuquerque for nearly two decades. Mujeres en Accion is an economic development cooperative made up, in part, of immigrant Spanishspeaking women who reside in or near Albuquerque’s South Broadway community. In February 1996 a group of eight women from the South Broadway neighborhood, trained in domestic violence prevention at UNM Family Development program, formed Mujeres en Accion (MEA).

Realizing that many women are forced to remain in violent relationships due to a lack of economic self-sufficiency, they wanted to address the problem with an income-generating component. Mujeres’ first incarnation was as a ceramics studio, but the making, marketing and selling of pottery proved somewhat uncertain. The women in the program already knew how to make tamales and Mujeres en Accion as we know it was born. Today MEA is a kitchen cooperative with hands-on training projects that teach new job skills while generating income through sales of Mexican and New Mexican food, primarily tamales. Mujeres co-op members learn how to run their own business, use a computer, bookkeeping, English as a second language, time management, quality control, sales, marketing problem solving, cooperative decision making and many take their GED while involved with the Mujeres en Accion cooperative. The Co-op has long sold many flavors of their delicious tamales; green chile and cheese, zucchini and mushroom, black bean, meat or chicken and others. As participants in the Foodshed Project their tamales are distributed by the Cooperative Distribution Center (CDC) and now can be found at fine food markets around the state as well as at four La Montanita locations. Expanding the markets for local producers, especially a cooperative with a social justice mission, is a key component of the CDC and the Co-op’s overall FoodShed program. Look for Mujeres en Accion tamales at all Co-op locations. Long a traditional food during the holiday season, you are welcome to special order large quantities (dozens) of tamales for your holiday gatherings. For frozen tamales call the frozen department at your closest Co-op location or for ready to eat tamales contact your favorite Co-op Deli. TAMALES: whether you make your own, or simply buy them, do warm them and share them with friends and take time out from the holiday bustle to ENJOY them!

$59.99 Holiday Dinner Package (serves 4)


No Muss, No Fuss: Just Great Holiday Food Made Easy by Our Expert Deli Chefs.

Side Dishes Holiday Dinner Specials Let our prepared-food chefs create or complement a holiday meal just for you. We’re offering a special selection of entrees, side dishes and desserts.

Entrees A pound serves 2-4 Minimum order: 1 pound • All-Natural Sliced Turkey Breast • Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

$11.99/lb $8.99/lb


A pound serves 4-6 Minimum order: 1 pound • Caramel Pecan Butternut Squash • Garlic Mashed Potatoes • Green Beans Amandine • Wild Rice with Piñon Nuts • Maple Yams and Cranberries • Herb Stuffing • Calabacitas Con Chile Verde • Cranberry Relish • Turkey Gravy • Cornbread Dressing

$10.99/lb $7.99/lb $9.99/lb $8.99/lb $9.99/lb $6.99/lb $8.99/lb $7.99/lb $6.99/Qt $6.99/lb


Let us make your holiday feast

stress free!

$12.99 Holiday Dinner Plate

Pies and dessert breads serve 6-8 Minimum order: 1 • Maple Pecan Pie $13.99 • Pumpkin Pie $12.99 • Vegan Pumpkin Pie $12.99 • Cranberry Walnut Bread Loaf $9.99 • Banana Nut Bread Loaf $9.99 • Vegan Cranberry Walnut Bread Loaf $9.99 • Bread Pudding $7.99/lb


call your LOCAL

CO-OP Deli

fordetails,or to pre-order

Placing Orders: The deli can provide everything for your holiday meal.

To Place a Special Order: • Review the deli’s menu offerings above or pick up an order form at the deli • Preorders will be accepted up to three days before the holiday (Sunday for Wednesday pick-up) • Select a pick-up day and time • Order in person or by phone at your local Co-op deli

Planning the Meal Use the following estimates to determine the quantities of food you will need. Estimates are per adult.

ORDER IN PERSON OR BY PHONE AT THESE CO-OP LOCATIONS NOB HILL 3500 Central SE, ABQ 265-4631 VALLEY 2400 Rio Grande NW, ABQ 242-8880 SANTA FE 913 West Alameda, Santa Fe 984-2852

• • • • • •

Entrée—1/2 to 3/4 lb cooked Potatoes—1/3 to 1/2 lb Vegetables—1/4 to 1/3 lb Stuffing—1/3 to 1/2 lb Gravy—4 to 6 oz Cranberry Relish—2 oz


ANNUAL meeting RECAP BY SUSAN MCALLISTER n October 27, at Warehouse 21 in Santa Fe, close to a hundred members, staff, and board members joined together to share the annual reporting on La Montañita’s financial standing, excellent food, music and poetry from Warehouse 21 kids. We met the candidates running for election and/or re-election to the board, and played an entertaining game to test our knowledge of the Seven Co-op Principles. The evening was jam-packed.


Roger Eldridge’s article on the patronage refund, the Co-op had a good year, especially in light of the very difficult economic climate we’ve experi-

friends, food& fun!

Shout outs! Thank you to Warehouse 21, Joseph Stevens (poetry) and David Dean (music). It is a great organization, was a fine location for our meeting, and both young men are very talented. Thanks, also, to Board Vice President Marshall Kovitz for presenting for the board, and Kristy Decker for introducing the board candidates. And, thank you for the food. Oh, the food! The Co-op staff and producers outdid themselves again, with fresh, tasty, amazing local food. If I heard one person say how amazing the spinach cakes were, I heard a dozen people say it.

enced lately. It was heartening to be able to present such a positive picture to our members. And Terry Bowling, General Manager, shared stories about some of the excellent work the Co-op does in the community, from the new Veteran Farmer Project to MoGro, from the La Montañita Fund to the Holiday Giving Tree.

As you read in Board President Martha Whitman’s annual report, (Co-op Connection, October issue) and in this issue, Board Treasurer

And that leads us to the game; a game of skill and daring, but really mostly of paying attention. We

Local FOOD


LA MONTANITA CO-OP! Thanks to you!

JUBILEE – A HOLIDAY CELEBRATION OF LOCAL FOOD Friday, December 7, from 4-7pm at the South Valley Economic Development Center. La Montanita Co-op was voted best local food retailer in the edible Santa Fe’s Local Food Heroes Awards! Thanks to all our supporters and partners for recognizing our efforts. We know it is thanks to the support of our members and shoppers we can build our local food system and create a richer and more robust foodshed.

We invite you to come celebrate with us, and many of our local food partners and collaborators, at the Local Food Heroes Awards Ceremony during the Jubilee—A Holiday Celebration of Local Food on December 7 from 4 to 7pm at the South Valley Economic Development Center. The actual award ceremony will take place at 6pm, but over the course of the evening you can sample the wares of dozens of artisan food producers, listen to live music, including neighborhood carolers, and buy tasty treats for a holiday party or as gifts. The South Valley Economic Development Center is located at 318 Isleta Boulevard SW, Albuquerque, NM 87105. FOR MORE INFORMATION give them a ring at 505-877-0373 or visit


Our deli departments take pride in using the freshest all natural and organic ingredients available and will work hard to ensure a wonderful stress free catered experience at a fair price. We want to ensure your satisfaction, therefore, we request that: • All catering orders are to be placed 48 hours in advance; • A 50% deposit is required at time of order for orders over $100; • Twenty-four-hour notice must be given to La Montanita Co-op for any cancelled order(s), otherwise a 50% fee will be assessed.

CHOOSE FROM: BREAKFAST PLATTERS: The Continental: home-baked muffins and scones, yogurt, granola, seasonal fruit, coffee and juice. $4.99/person The Schmear (a.k.a., the Co-op Bagel Platter): freshly baked bagels, cream cheese, sliced tomatoes, sweet red onion and cucumbers. $2.99/person Sweet Morning Tray: includes assorted fresh baked muffins, scones and sweet breads, elegantly plated by our pastry chefs. $2.49/person The Quiches: The Southwest (green chile, beans and avocado), The Mediterranean (spinach and feta), or the Lorraine (ham or sausage): $3.29/person COCKTAIL, DINNER OR ANYTIME

GATHERINGS: PARTY PLATTERS Beautifully presented party platters for all occasions! (No more cold, greasy pizza at game time!)

call the


asked each attendee to fill out a sheet with the seven co-operative principles (although we gave everyone principle 4, Autonomy and Independence, because it’s a tough one), and then we asked them to work together in groups to list ways that La Montañita manifests those principles in the community, either as a practice or a program. The group that came up with the most correct answers in the shortest amount of time, won. The good news is we had a team that got everything correct, and they won La Montañita Co-op hats. The best news is that everyone who played received a gift certificate from the Co-op. If you are interested in seeing what the game looked like, the board is happy to send you our answer sheet. It lists the principles and examples of how La Montañita manifests them. All in all, it was an excellent annual meeting and we thank everyone who came out and participated. And, just to give an idea of how the game worked, the annual meeting represents both principle 2, Democratic Member Control and principle 5, Education, Training and Information. The annual meeting is where the Board of Directors that you elected report back on your Co-op, and also where we share important information about La Montañita and where we stand in the community with you! FEEL FREE TO EMAIL THE BOARD at bod@lamon if you have questions or would like to see the game sheet, or find it on our website at



spotlight on


HOLIDAY In a rush? Got lots going on? Let your favorite Co-op Deli help you put it all together! Treat yourself and your guests to the best in fresh, local and organic foods with a home cooked flair, but without the muss and fuss.


CRUDITES: The freshest in seasonal vegetables and dip. $3.29/person DELI PARTY PLATTER: Nitrate-free sliced meats and/ or cheeses. $4.59/person Meat Only: Nitrate-free sliced selection. $4.99/person CONDIMENT PLATTER: All the “fixins” for the meat and deli platters. $1.59/person ANTIPASTO PLATTER: A medley of traditional Italian flavors. $6.99/person MEDITERRANEAN PLATTER: A fabulous traditional “mezza.” $5.99/person

December 2012 6


MEAT! Your Co-op has a variety of specialty meats available for your holiday celebrations! FOR SPECIAL CUTS OR SPECIAL ORDERS call Dave at Nob Hill: 265-4631, Elena at the Valley: 242-8800, Grace in Santa Fe: 984-2852, Alisha in Gallup: 863-5383.

CO-OP ENTREES include: Chicken or Veggie Enchiladas: $5.99/person • Traditional or Veggie Lasagna: $5.99/person • Eggplant or Chicken Parmesan: $6.99/person • Crab Cakes: $3.99/person • Poached Wild Caught Salmon: Price varies due to market price of fish SPECIALTY SALADS BY THE POUND Mediterranean Pasta: $9.49/lb • Pesto Pasta: $8.99/lb • Fresh Cole Slaw: $6.99/lb • Potato Salad: $7.49/lb • Carrot and Raisin: $7.49/lb • Tabouli: $9.49/lb • Tuna Salad: $11.49/lb • Mango or Tarragon Chicken Salad: $10.49/lb • Quinoa and Cashew: $8.99/lb • Classic Garden, with organic field greens: $2.99/person • Southwestern Cobb/Grilled Chicken Breast: $4.99/person • SALADS NOT LISTED CAN BE MADE UPON REQUEST SANDWICH AND WRAP PLATTERS A selection of fresh breads, tortillas and baguettes and garnished with crisp lettuce, green chile, fresh tomato, red onion and sprouts with: Meat and/or Cheese: $6.99/person Vegetarian and Vegan Options: $5.99/person HUMMUS • TABOULI • FALAFEL AND TAHINI SAUCE • CHEESE, VEGAN CHEESE or SEITAN AND FOR DESSERT! FAMOUS CO-OP COOKIE PLATTER: $13.99/dozen BROWNIE PLATTER: $2.99/person CUPCAKE PLATTER: $2.79/person And don’t forget to ask about whole cakes and pies. CALL YOUR FAVORITE CO-OP DELI today for your special order. NOB HILL: TIM at 505-265-4631, email: timd@la • VALLEY: ROBIN at 505-242-8800, email: • SANTA FE: JEFF at 505984-2852, email:




December 2012 7

ou probably have noticed several references to this year’s patronage refund in this month’s newsletter! We are thrilled to be able to return $265,000 to our members; this is $16,000 more than last year. It is your support that has made this patronage amount possible. Given the state of the economy, to be able to return over a quarter of a million dollars in patronage refunds is a testament to your support of the Co-op you own and the coop economic model.

our fiscal year of September 1, 2011, to August 3, 2012. We then divided each member’s purchase data by 256 (the number of days we have data for), then multiplied it by 366; days in a year plus one leap year day (256/366). This is the same as multiplying each member’s purchases for the period we have data for by 1.43, to come up with the total purchases used to calculate each member’s patronage refundable amount for the full fiscal year.

We did have an issue at our Santa Fe store that added an extra calculation to our usual patronage refund work.

This server glitch only affects the Santa Fe store member purchases. We did not experience any member purchase data collection issues at the other Co-op locations. As with any problem the key question is how do we prevent this from happening again? We are installing a new POS (point of sale) system at all stores. This new system is far more reliable than the current system and has multiple points of backup. I’m confident that the above calculation is fair and just; and that everyone will receive the full patronage refund they have earned.

In early January 2012, our computer system experienced a server failure at the Santa Fe store. After months of efforts to retrieve this data we could not recover the lost data. It included member sales for the time period in which the server was not working. We consulted an outside certified public accountant to assist us with the best method to address this lost data to make sure all Santa Fe shoppers received all the patronage refund that was due to them. To rectify the situation, this year’s patronage calculation for members who shopped at the Santa Fe store was done by looking at each member’s purchase data for the 256 days we did have purchase data during

Please let me know if you have any questions. I can reached at or by phone at 505-217-2020. Thank you for another successful year for our Co-op. TERRY B. PAT R O N A G E R E F U N D

Co-op staff picks

Holiday Gifts The Co-op can make giving healthy sustainable gifts easy. And should all else fail, give the gift of good healthy food in the form of a Co-op gift certificate, available at any Co-op information desk. Also to make gift giving easy we tapped “women in the know” who head our non-food section and have selected a wide array of great gifts that family and friends will enjoy. Thanks to Chris of Nob Hill and Cynthia of Santa Fe, check out these great gift ideas. Lucuma Gourds—Handmade gourds from Peru beautifully carved into many designs. At Nob Hill, we especially like the animal designs, including cats, owls, and penguins. Embudo Fabric Design potholders—Made in Dixon, New Mexico. You won't find potholders like these anywhere else. The designs are uniquely New Mexican and/or uniquely quirky, featuring images like the New Mexico map, red chile ristra, Tecate beer can, and coffee Guadalupe. A great addition to any kitchen! Andes Gifts—Andes Gifts proves that high quality, handmade products can be sourced ethically and sustainably benefiting the individuals and communities involved. Look for lovely scarves and hats and mittens, handmade with alpaca wool that come in both stylish

and fun designs. Our favorites are the animal hats: the owl, cat, koala beer, and beaver. Not only are they warm and comfortable, but adorable as well. Sparrow Hawk Farm—Look for Sparrow Hawk Farm Natural Beeswax Candles, handmade in Sabinal, NM. Beautiful candles and beeswax ornaments in holiday designs such as Santa Claus, Cat in Kitchen, angels, and pinon cones are the very best candles one can get. Not only are they all made by hand from locally sourced pure beeswax, they give off the most delicate and soothing sweet honey scent. Speaking of candles, Pacifica Soy Candles or Aroma Naturals Candles are a great buy for the price and are both clean and natural. Pacifica Soy Candles are made from generously scented vegetable soy wax. Pacifica's signature fragrance blends with essential and natural oils and have lead-free cotton wicks, are long-burning and always phthalate-free. Or look for Aroma Naturals candles in a variety of scents. Love & Toast is one more perfume house founded by Margot Elena, owner and perfumer known as the inventor of luxurious formulas in the previous decade.


BY ROBIN SEYDEL The shorter days as we head towards winter solstice are made brighter by the colors and flavors of winter citrus. Their power packed nutrition is the perfect antidote to all the bugs that get passed around during cold weather. There is nothing more delicious than hot water, fresh squeezed Meyer lemons and a dash of honey. The weather may be chilly, but thanks to the Co-op Distribution Center you can keep yourself warm, snug and healthy with terrific, nutritious, and delicious produce from your Co-op. This year the CDC will be bringing us delicious red Rio Star grapefruits, Hamlin oranges and Meyer lemons. Look for other citrus, including a wide assortment of tangerines: Clementine, Satsuma, Tangelo and more. Look for traditional holiday fruit favorites such as mellow pears and tart cranberries. Don’t miss great apples,

including the always delicious Winesap apples from Cider Mill Farms that are a CDC special. All this fruit sits alongside a bounty of hearty root vegetables, warming squashes and savory fare like rutabagas, butternut squashes, parsnips, pumpkins, radishes, bold beets and flavorful sweet potatoes to keep you warm and well fed. This December we are lucky to have a cheerful harvest of local English walnuts and delicious chestnuts, just in time for early winter roasting. Also, through the CDC Foodshed project look for White Mountain potatoes from Paul New’s White Mountain Farm in Alamosa, CO. And any of your meals can be made even better with delicious ciders, ideal for mulling or drinking fresh. Look for the one and only Big B’s Fresh Cider and all their delicious apple and other juice/tea combinations. Best wishes for great holidays and a happy and prosperous New Year from your La Montanita Coop produce departments.

Co-op’s CLOSED on December 25

december Calendar

of Events December 1: Shop and Stroll and Co-op Holiday Party, see page 1. 12/15 Santa Fe Holiday Party 12/16 North Valley Holiday Party and Craft Fair 12/17 Giving Tree GIFT RETURN DEADLINE! 12/18 BOD Meeting, Immanuel Church, 5:30pm

CO-OPS: A Solution-Based System A co-operative is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise.


THE KIDS! La Montanita is proud to announce the release of our first ever comic book! The book is divided in half, telling the story in English in one direction, and Spanish in the other. Drawing from the comics featured over the last year in the Co-op Connection, the book tells the story of a modern day family discovering its cooperative roots. The Co-op Comix offers a fun and engaging way to remember all the reasons you shop at the Co-op. Available at your Co-op!

Pick up your free copy of the CO-OP COMIX today!

Our La Monta単ita Staff celebrates f

Left to Right, Top to Bottom: Sarah / Membership: A wide variety of Winter Squash, from $1.29/lb. 100% Wool Hat by Sunday Afternoons, $36.99. Heidi / Nob Hill: Fair Trade 100% Alpaca Wool Animal Hat, Mittens and Socks by Andes Gifts, from $23.99. LOCAL! Provence, France Lavender Dead Sea Mineral Bath Salts, $11.99. LOCAL! Sandia Soap, 6 oz, $4.99. LOCAL! Freshly Baked Vegan & Gluten-free Cookies Fresh Daily at Co-op Delis, from $1.39. Aaron & daughter, Aislynn / Nob Hill: Fair Trade 100% Alpaca Wool Hat and Animal Scarf by Andes Gifts, from $23.99. Vegan & Dairy-Free Whipped Soy Topping by Soyatoo, $5.69. Fair Trade, Everyday Shea Lemon Lavender Bubble Bath, $13.99. Ramon / North Valley: Oven-safe Ceramic Bowl by Gibson, $21.99. Wooden Spoon by Down to Earth Basics, $13.99. LOCAL! Hand-Screened Original Art Hot Pad by Embudo Fabric Designs, $13.99. Acupressure Massage Eco Mat by Spoonk, from $39.99. LOCAL! Scarf by Rainbow Designs, $24.99. Fair Trade & Organic Chocolate Bars by Alter Eco, from $3.49.

s freshFAIRLOCAL for the holidays!

Louisa / North Valley: Fair Trade, Hand-knit Finger Puppets, $2.99 each. LOCAL! Hand-crocheted Hair Clip by Martha Todd, from $3.99. Fair Trade African Market Basket by Alaffia, from $13.99. LOCAL! Candles by Bruce McCallum, Tapers, $1.79, Fatboy, $4.79; California Sage, $4.99; Hand-painted African Art Market Candles, from $4.99. Peg / Santa Fe: Preserve Mixing Bowls, $22.99. Fair Trade 100% Alpaca Wool Animal Hat and Fingerless Mittens by Andes Gifts, from $23.99. Citrus + Mint Everyone Lotion, 32 oz, $9.69. Coconut + Lemon Everyone Soap, 32 oz, $9.99. Authentic Aromatherapy Candles by Tru Melange, from $14.99. Mona / Santa Fe: LOCAL! Agapao Coffee Kona Blend and Organic Wicked Espresso, 12 oz, $11.59. All Natural Gingerbread Acorn Cookies by Dancing Deer, $4.99. 100% Organic Cloth Napkins for Kids by Fabkins, $18.99. Fair Trade 100% Alpaca Wool Animal Hat by Andes Gifts, $25.99. John / Santa Fe: Skincare Discovery Kit by Pangea Organics, $39.99. Cucumber + Lemon Everyone Lotion for Every Man, 32 oz, $9.79.

holiday food

Mary Alice Cooper, MD Classical Homeopathy in Albuquerque since 1992. Specializing in Visceral Manipulation & Lab Analysis. 204 Carlisle Blvd. NE Albuquerque NM 87106 (505)266-6522

December 2012 10

FOODS with

spirit Swiss Chard Gratin This recipe from The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters is a rich and delicious addition to any holiday table. Serves 4 to 6 3 bunches chard, washed and stemmed (save half the stems) 2 cups fresh breadcrumbs 5 tablespoons butter 1 large onion, diced Salt to taste 4 teaspoons flour 1 cup milk Freshly grated nutmeg Bring a large saucepan of salted water to boil. Thinly slice the reserved chard stems, add them to the water, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the leaves and continue cooking until tender, about 3-4 minutes longer. Drain and allow to cool, then gently squeeze out the excess liquid and coarsely chop. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350째F. Melt a tablespoon of butter and toss in the breadcrumbs until the butter has been absorbed. Spread them out on a small baking sheet. Toast, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. In a medium saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons of butter over medium heat, then add the onion. Sweat until translucent, about 6 minutes, then

stir in the chard and a couple pinches of salt. Cook for 3 minutes, then sprinkle the flour over the chard and stir well to coat. Add the milk and nutmeg and bring to a boil. Simmer for 5 minutes as the mixture thickens. The chard should be just moist, but not overly wet, or else the gratin won't brown properly. Taste and season with salt. Butter a baking dish and spread the chard mixture evenly in the dish. Dot with the remaining butter and top with the breadcrumbs. Bake until golden and bubbling, about 20 to 30 minutes. Allow to cool for a few minutes, then serve. Citrus and Beet Salad This recipe was taken from the food blog Fork, Knife, Swoon. It combines the delicious winter season flavors of citrus and beets in an amazingly simple, tasty, and colorful salad. Serves 4 4 golden or red beets, washed and trimmed 2 medium Cara Cara navel oranges 3 blood oranges 2 Satsuma tangerines 2 cups baby arugula, loosely packed 1/4 cup fresh chervil (or parsley), roughly chopped 1/2 cup goat cheese, roughly crumbled 1 tablespoons fresh lime juice Extra virgin olive oil Fresh ground black pepper Preheat oven to 400째F. Drizzle beets with olive oil and wrap tightly in aluminum foil. Roast for an hour, until beets can be easily pierced with a fork. Remove from oven and let cool, still wrapped in foil. Meanwhile, cut off the tops and bottoms of oranges. Using a sharp knife, remove peels and white pith. Slice the oranges crosswise into thin slices. Peel the tangerines and separate the segments. Place the tangerine segments and orange slices in a bowl. Juice the remaining orange ends and add to the bowl along with fresh lime juice. When the beets are cool enough to handle, remove the skins and slice the beets crosswise 1/8-inch thick. Arrange the beets, oranges and tangerines on plates, layering to create texture. Top with arugula, chervil and goat cheese. Drizzle with remaining citrus juice and olive oil and season with freshly ground black pepper. Find more recipes and stories at www.fork

holiday food Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Almonds This vegan recipe comes from Nancy Lopez McHugh, writer for the food blog Spicie This recipe makes an often-unpopular veggie delectable to even the most ardent naysayer. Serves 2 to 4 1 lb. fresh raw, brussels sprouts 3 garlic cloves, minced 3 1/2 ounces blanched almonds 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil – adjust to taste Salt, to taste Ground black pepper, to taste Preheat oven to 400°F. Properly rinse the brussels sprouts, remove any damaged outer leaves. Cut off bottom stem, then cut in half. In a large bowl gently toss the brussels sprout halves with the remaining ingredients. Making sure to evenly coat the brussels sprouts. Place in center of oven and roast until desired firmness, usually about 20 minutes. Note that overcooking brussels sprouts will cause them to release an unpleasant odor. Rosemary Meyer Lemon Simple Syrup A simple syrup from seasonal ingredients can be a great base for any number of hot holiday beverages and party cocktails—you can add soda water for a homemade soft drink, add your favorite spirit for a delicious cocktail, or mix it with a steamy cup of green tea to ward off cold. Below is a recipe for a basic citrus and herb simple syrup adapted from the blog Shelterrific ( Try other citrus and herb combinations for a variety of simple syrups. Makes about 1 1/2 cups 1 cup sugar 1 cup water 1 Meyer lemon, zested and cut in half (remove the seeds) 1 handful rosemary (or any fresh herb) Put all your ingredients in a small pot over medium heat and stir until the sugar dissolves. Let the mixture come to a boil, then remove from heat, cover the pot and let it steep for 30 minutes to an hour. Uncover and squeeze the lemon, releasing all of the juice. Remove the lemon halves and the rosemary. Pour into a jar. The syrup can keep for up to a month, covered in the refrigerator. For a rosemary-lemon vodka gimlet: Fill a highball or short drinking glass halfway with ice. Add 2 shots of vodka and 2 spoonfuls of syrup. Top off with soda water and stir until combined. Garnish with a rosemary sprig or lemon slice. For rosemary-lemon soda: Pour 3 tablespoons of the syrup into a tall glass. Fill with soda or tonic water and stir. Add ice. For rosemary-lemon tea: Make your favorite cup of green, black, or herb tea. Add 1 to 3 tablespoons simple syrup to taste.

December 2012 11 Spaghetti Squash Fritters Adapted from Mollie Katzen’s The Vegetable Dishes I Can’t Live Without. For a holiday meal, this dish can serve as an appetizer, a vegetarian main course, or a side dish for everyone. 1 large spaghetti squash (4 lbs) 1 medium onion, finely diced (approximately 1 1/2 cups diced) 1 large garlic clove, finely diced 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/2 cup flour 4 large eggs 1/2 teaspoon salt (generous measure) Unsalted butter for the pan Garnish Sour cream Chives, minced Roasted squash seeds, reserved from squash, instructions below (requires canola oil, paprika and salt) 1 lemon, cut into wedges Heat oven to 350ºF. Cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scrape out the seeds (consider keeping and baking for a tasty snack). Bake the squash halves face-down for approximately 30 minutes on a lightly oiled or parchment covered baking sheet. You should be able to pierce the skin with a fork. Remove from oven, and set aside to cool. Reduce oven heat to 200°F and insert a medium or large baking dish for keeping fritters once they’re cooked. While the squash is baking, place a skillet over medium-low heat, and add a tablespoon oil. Add diced onion and garlic, and cook until softened, approximately 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Once the squash has cooled to room temperature, or is at least cool enough to handle, use a spoon to remove the flesh. Place flesh in a strainer or colander and use your hands to squeeze out excess liquid. When you first begin doing this, it may seem like there isn’t much juice, but stick with it. Place drained squash in a medium bowl, and use a fork to separate spaghetti strands. Add flour, and stir well to combine. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs with salt and cooked onions and garlic. Add egg mixture to squash mixture, and stir to combine. Melt enough butter to coat a large skillet at medium-low heat, until the butter barely begins to brown. Use a 1/4 measuring cup with a handle to scoop batter into skillet. Use the back of the scoop or your spatula to gently flatten the fritters. Cook fritters for about 8 minutes on each side until they are golden brown, flipping between sides a few times to make sure fritters aren’t burning. Place cooked fritters on a dish in the preheated oven to keep them warm while you continue cooking additional batches. Serve fritters hot or warm, with a dollop of sour cream, chives, roasted squash seeds, and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.






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Shopping, Wrapping

&Giving H

SARAH WENTZEL-FISHER oliday time can be a celebration of abundance, or a time of extreme excess and waste. This year as you celebrate look for ways to reduce your budget and waste, reuse creatively to dress up your gifts and events, and recycle old stuff into clever decorations or presents. BY

According to the Use Less Stuff Report, edited by Bob Lilienfeld, between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day Americans generate 25% more waste per week than during the rest of the year. We produce an additional 1.2 million tons per week, or an extra 6 million tons, for the holiday season. Some other interesting statistics from this report are: • According to the USDA, Americans throw away 25% of food purchased— 52 billion pounds each year, or 170 pounds per person! When you add in food waste from restaurants, retailers and other commercial purveyors, the University of Arizona estimates that the real amount wasted is closer to 50%. • If every American family reduced holiday gasoline consumption by just one gallon a week, the result would be an annual reduction in greenhouse gas production of 13 billion pounds (6.5 million tons) of carbon dioxide. • If American households reduced their holiday ribbon usage by just 2 feet, the result would be a savings of 50,000 miles, enough ribbon to circle the Earth twice. Do a little fall cleaning in preparation for the holidays. Clean out closets and drawers, keeping friends and family in mind who you plan on sending cards or gifts. Is there a box of scrap paper or fabric you can use for wrapping gifts or making decorations? Can you re-appropriate last year’s gift cards by cutting them in half, or gluing the front to a blank piece of recycled color paper? Here are some suggestions from the EPA website on really easy ways to reduce your holiday footprint.



• Thousands of paper and plastic shopping bags end up in landfills every year. Reduce the number of bags thrown out by bringing reusable cloth bags for holiday gift shopping. Tell store clerks you don't need a bag for small or oversized purchases. • Wrap gifts in recycled or reused wrapping paper or funny papers. Also to save or recycle used wrapthe remember ping paper. Give gifts that don't require gift o f much packaging, such as concert tickets FOOD or gift certificates. • Send recycled-content greeting cards to reduce the amount of virgin paper used during the holidays. Remember to recycle any paper cards you receive. You can also try sending electronic greeting cards to reduce paper waste. • About 40% of all battery sales occur during the holiday season. Buy rechargeable batteries to accompany your electronic gifts, and consider giving a battery charger as well. Rechargeable batteries reduce the amount of potentially harmful materials thrown away, and can save money in the long run. • Turn off or unplug holiday lights during the day. Doing so will not only save energy, but will also help your lights last longer. • Approximately 33 million live Christmas trees are sold in North America every year. After the holidays, look for ways to recycle your tree instead of sending it to a landfill. Check with your community solid waste department and find out if they collect and mulch trees. Your town might be able to use chippings from mulched trees for hiking trails and beachfront erosion barriers. • To help prevent waste from cutting down and disposing of live trees, you can buy a potted tree and plant it after the holidays.

Flash in the Pan: Holiday Gifts for an uncluttered


ARI LEVAUX ased on the variety of ice cream scoops on the market—1,529 available from Amazon alone—one might conclude the world faces a crisis of improperly or inconveniently excavated ice cream. I think it's more a symptom of our love affair with cooking gadgetry. Today's kitchens are bigger than ever, and can easily accommodate toys like turkey fryers, pizza stones, bread-making machines, and drawers of little hand tools. Every day we're inundated with images of picture-perfect food, and some people actually believe that an adjustable tip on their bulb baster, or a chef jacket with their name embroidered on it, will help them reach the next level. But at some point, even in the most super-sized of kitchens, the returns from accumulating this stuff will eventually diminish. Keep that in mind as we prepare for another seasonal round of buying each other more crap to deal with.


Every piece of cooking gear you give someone effectively takes away space from their kitchen. If he or she doesn't have a lot of space to work with that can mess with their cooking flow. Just because, in the moment of presentopening, someone is pleased at the sight of a new set of egg-poaching baskets, doesn't mean it's in his or her best interest to keep it. What I want for Christmas is an uncluttered kitchen, with just the tools I need to do what I do. And when I'm at home, in private, what I do is pretty simple. I'm not after style points, or photos to post on my Facebook timeline. Food usually goes in a bowl ungarnished, spiced with some form of capsicum and greased with cheese or mayo if desired. I'll take good ingredients over kitchen gear any day. I can improvise from there. What I can't do is move a dough mixer out of the way every time I want to chop an onion. I can't untangle the spatula from the avocado slicer in a clattery, cluttered drawer. I can't waste my shelf space with gravy separators and pancake portion pourers. I'm not saying folks should go ill-prepared into meal prep. If you frequently enjoy soft-boiled eggs at home, you should probably own one of those medieval-torture-device-looking things that constricts a ring of blades around the tip of the egg with an easy squeeze of the handle, scalping off the shell and allowing your spoon easy access to the slimy innards. I do not need one of these devices, hence I do not have one. But given how often I write about food, I am admittedly shocked at times by how primitive my kitchen is. Until recently I was opening cans with a jackknife. I still don't own measuring spoons. My whisk gets more action as a mallet for a certain little drummer boy than I ever give it. Not one piece of my silverware matches another. But nobody leaves my table unfulfilled. No one can taste that the meal was cooked on an electric stove, or that my knives are dull.

Knives, in fact, can serve as a barometer for someone's obsession with kitchen tools.You can spend a lot of money on them, or almost none. Any knife can be kept sharp, or get the job done dull. If you are really into fancy knives, you probably have at least one ice cream scoop. If you're a pro, you pretty much need to spend money on knives. Otherwise, you really don't. It's interesting that Japan and Germany, our World War II enemies, seem to have the world market for fine knives cornered. Japan, at least, I can understand, because it has awesome food. But Germany? Japanese chefs say they need yanagi, usuba, and deba knives in order to properly float my boat of sushi, and I fully support them. But I also know full well that if I tried to use those knives at home I'd probably just hurt myself. I don't need knives like that. My favorite knife ever is one I got in Thailand. It's rectangular and very thin, with a wide, flat tip I can use as a spatula. I picked it up while on a motorcycle—taxi tour around some of Bangkok's widely dispersed open-air kitchensupply markets. My driver was helping me find a cro hiin, Thai for "big-ass stone mortar and pestle." I said cro hiin so many times that day it remains one of the few bits of Thai I remember, along with hello and thanks.

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• Have a create-your-own-decorations party! Invite family and friends to create and use holiday decorations such as ornaments made from old greeting cards or cookie dough, garlands made from strung popcorn or cranberries, wreaths made from artificial greens and flowers, and potpourri made from kitchen spices such as cinnamon and cloves. • Consider the durability of a product before you buy it as a gift. Cheaper, less durable items often wear out quickly, creating waste and costing you money. • When buying gifts, check product labels to determine an item's recyclability and whether it is made from recycled materials. Buying recycled encourages manufacturers to make more recycled-content products available. Holidays should be about quality, not quantity. Consider buying a little less than you think you need, and you might be surprised at how far you can make a little stretch. Plus you might be pleasantly pleased when you have less to clean up afterwards and when you look at what you have spent for the holidays. Celebrate the abundance of good company, intangible blessings, what you can do for others rather than what you can give them, and what you already have—HAPPY HOLIDAYS!


your holiday footprint!

We finally found my cro hiin at a stall in a market underneath an elevated highway. I bought both sets the guy had, because they were absolutely perfect: well-crafted from smooth, heavy stone. They were the size of tea kettles and about 20 pounds each—5 for the pestle, 15 for the mortar. Flying home, I didn't want to check them for fear they'd bounce around and destroy each other, and the rest of my luggage. But the airline wouldn't let me carry them on the plane, fearing I might use one to smash open the cockpit door. Luckily, airline personnel could see what was at stake and helped me package them appropriately. When I finally got my mortars and pestles home, I put one set straight on my counter, where it proved well worth the trouble. It pulverizes everything, large and small, hard and soft. The heavy pestle does all the work, and the mortar doesn't budge. The bowl is deep enough that stuff doesn't fly out and all over the kitchen. It consumes a bit of space, but it's worth it. That cro hiin remains one of the most important tools in my primitive kitchen. I gave the other cro hiin to friends as a wedding present. What better way to symbolize a marriage than the grinding action of pestle in mortar? As for presents to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, solstice, Kwanzaa, the retail economy, or whatever they're calling it these days, remember: Your friends probably already have an ice cream scoop. It's called a spoon.

GIVE the

necessary utensils!




La Montanita


• Investor enrollment period now open • Investment options begin at $250 • Loan repayment terms tailored to the needs of our community of food producers • Loan applications taken on an ongoing basis To set up a meeting to learn more or for a Prospectus, Investor Agreement, Loan Criteria and Applications, call or e-mail Robin at: 505-217-2027, toll free at 877-775-2667 or e-mail her at



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the pressure of perfection BY AMYLEE UDELL his time of year often comes with many expectations. By looking around, you can easily see the industry built around setting the perfect table, decorating the perfect tree, wearing the perfect outfit and giving the perfect present. TV commercials show smiling, peaceful families sitting by the fire sipping perfectly warmed and seasoned beverages. So much perfection is bound to create an inferiority complex in many of us. We've heard about magazines spurring body image issues. This is somewhat similar.


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that money is not the root of all evil. But that "the love of money is the root of all evil." (1, Timothy 6:10) GARDENING Does your friend have an amazing green thumb? Does he grow ALL his tomatoes for the entire year during the growing season and put them up for the rest of the year? Do you know people who are able to grow exotic varieties and who have the secret to squash bugs?

BODIES Many essays have been written on the impact of media on body image. No one has a perfect body. If supermodels complain about their perceived flaws, do any of US mere mortals stand a chance? Aim for health. Ask yourself how close to perfect is good enough for you? And if you're bummed about your butt or glum about your gut, remember that your body does amazing things. If you're overall healthy, that is a blessing for which many people would gladly trade a round butt or gut.

While women and mothers tend to take the pressure of perfection to heart, we are ALL susceptible in different ways. HOLIDAYS I mentioned some of those issues above. It's easy to want to go overboard with holidays and birthdays because we LOVE our families and friends. So try to remember that memories are made by the people we are with, not the matching mugs or fancy recipes. FOOD Even if you're not "on a diet," many of us do subscribe to a food philosophy of some sort. And people often want to eat perfectly within that diet or philosophy. This is a well intentioned goal, but for most of us, difficult to maintain. Some people MUST eat a certain way for health reasons. But if you occasionally falter, think of it more as a splurge, not a personality flaw. And if you are feeding children, feed them well but show them that fast food has a place and don't judge it beyond that. Food can nourish bodies and souls, but not if it's eaten with guilt. ENVIRONMENTALISM Is the weight of the world on your shoulders? Can you out-recycle your neighbor? Do you wish you had a grey water system, earth batteries, reclaimed-built house and solar everything? While we can all probably do a little more to help our planet's future, we can each only do so much. If you find your heart heavy with worry, easing up is probably better for your health. Worry is normal, but acting positively to make changes with a joyful heart shows everyone else that making improvements is manageable and something they might want to try, too. FINANCES Would things be perfect if you had just a little more? Do you feel guilty that your friends seem to have less and suffer for it? Do you wish you could follow a better budget or get out of debt or save more or figure out better investments or pick the best retirement options? Whew. Getting finances in order can be exhausting! It is very easy to feel defeated by money issues. You might consider changing your goal from getting finances in perfect order to at least developing a manageable, loose, long-range plan. And

HOUSE/HOME Not big enough, not clean enough, unmatching furniture, old carpet, pet stains, child "decorated" walls, cracked tiles, barren backyard. While our homes might be our castles, no one told me the castle floors don't clean themselves! So, I look around and try to weigh the importance of a clean house with the importance of playing board games with my kids. Or accept that dishes piling up are the consequence of making real food for my family. Maybe dirty dishes = LOVE?

Do their gardens look luscious and organized while yours looks like a neglected desert jungle? Or do you NOT have a garden while everyone else is improving the world with theirs? Gasp! Whatever you are able to grow is great. It helps. If you can't or don't want to grow a garden, don't despair. Support OTHER gardens! Join your local CSA or forge relationships with the farmers at the local markets and let that guilt go! EDUCATION This can be divided into two areas: yours or your kids. Sometimes choosing the right educational program or school can weigh heavily on a parent. We feel like this one decision determines our child's entire future! What if we mess up?! When I was making this decision, I told myself repeatedly, "This isn't irreversible. We can change course at any time." And then there are the adults I've known over the years who live with regret over NOT finishing a degree program. It's like a scarlet letter that only they can see. I have no advice here. Your value is not in that degree, although finishing it may make those unseen letters a source of pride in the end. Still, you are no less perfect where you are right now.

PARENTING I saved this one for last. As someone "in charge" of the safety and development of little people, there are a plethora of ways I can mess up. I could overindulge, be too strict, expose them to too much media, deprive them of movies and turn them into screen junky adults, poison them with sugar, not give them enough responsibility, yell at them, ignore them, jump in too soon, wait too long, drive them too hard, neglect fulfilling their potential, not nurse them, nurse them too long, and more. One person's idea of loving a child is another person's ruining them. But there's no turning back, is there? There is no perfect parent. We've all cried because of our parents and we will all cause our child to cry. So expect to mess up! And when you do, apologize. Preserve your relationship. Then, I hope the mistakes will fade like scars and the relationship will remain. What do you still hold against your own parents? Forgive them for not being perfect, because you sure won't be either. And so, as the year closes with celebrations, gatherings, the warmth of love and the joy of family and friends, let your RIGHT NOW be perfect. Let your flaws be perfectly you. Or just let go of the idea of perfect and focus on what is already right in your life. For more information contact: www.Inspired or find Amylee at /inspiredbirth.

community forum How to Grow




permanent root systems. The same is often true for vitamins and protein content. 5) Extension of harvest system—perennials already have a head start on the annuals because of that root system, and not having to take the energy to germinate at the beginning of the growing season.

VEGETABLES BY MARTIN CRAWFORD REVIEWED BY ANN ADAMS ith the winter months before us, it is time to begin thinking about what you’ll plant in your garden in the spring. However, if you have a perennial garden, it is the gift that keeps on giving beyond the annual production of plants like tomatoes or lettuce. Think of the years of production one gets from asparagus plants, nopale cacti, or chives and garlic. That’s not to say you can’t have both a perennial and an annual garden, but some people think that perennial beds are for fruit or herbs. Martin Crawford’s How to Grow Perennial Vegetables really broadens that picture considerably, as he talks about how gardeners could get their full vegetable diet from a perennial garden. He also explains the multiple benefits of such a garden not only for the gardener but for the soil and the planet.


While Crawford’s primary experience is in temperate climates, such as the United Kingdom, this book is laid out well to help a gardener know which of these vegetables are good for poor soils, dry soils, full sun, and which hardiness zones they can tolerate. In looking through the book there were many plants that would be suited for zone 5-6 (the mountains) and even more for zone 6-7 (Albuquerque). Granted, it would be good to check with local native nurseries, to get their input, but this book really helped shift my paradigm about the variety and quantity of perennial vegetables that could be grown to reduce dependency on annual vegetables. Why worry about that? As Crawford points out, the key benefits of growing perennials: 1) Less work—you don’t have to cultivate the soil either for planting or weeding (at least not as much) 2) Fewer carbon emissions—because you don’t have to cultivate the soil (possibly even storing carbon in the soil rather than releasing it each year)

December 2012 14

Crawford also provides great information about how to set up these gardens to maximize space and function—simple instructions on polycultures and permaculture design as well as detailed instructions on planting, care and harvest of the plants as well as sources for seeds.

3) Better for the soil—soil structure is maintained, which helps build humus and keeps nutrients in the soil. 4) Healthier food—most perennials contain higher mineral content than annuals because of larger,

So whether you are considering a standard perennial vegetable like asparagus, or want to add some sheep sorrel into your garden, or are considering allowing your chard to become “perpetual,” How to Grow Perennial Vegetables will be a valuable resource in your explorations. Ask for it at your favorite locally-owned bookstore. Ann Adams homesteads on Happy Goat Lucky Farm in the Manzano Mountains.



HOLIDAY BIRD COUNTS The National Audubon Society began the “Christmas Bird Counts” in 1901. These counts provide important information about wintering bird populations. There are close to 30 counts held in New Mexico and the Sangre de Cristo Audubon Chapter participates in about 10 counts between December 19 and January 10. In February the 16th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count is sponsored by the Randall Davey Audubon Center of Santa Fe. Please go to for more information and to find out how you can participate. The Santa Fe Audubon Society and its Randall Davey House run on volunteer energy. Please contact Carl Beal at to find out how you can get involved and connect with the community. For more information and schedules, check with the Sangre de Cristo Audubon Society at



food and water WATC H



We believe that consumers have the right to know what they are purchasing and feeding their families. Please lend a few hours a week prior to the next legislative session, which begins in January 2013, to make labeling of GE foods in New Mexico a reality.


Fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, injects a mixture of water, sand and chemicals under high pressure into dense rock formations — shale, tight sandstone or coal beds — to crack the rock and release natural gas. Fracking has been around for decades, but the techniques, technologies and chemicals used to reach new, remote gas reserves are more intensive and riskier than conventional gas drilling. We advocate for an immediate ban on this dangerous process. FOOD ISSUES Right now, we are working for legislation in New Mexico that will require the labeling of Genetically Engineered (GE) or Genetically Modified Foods. Most GE crops are designed to be tolerant of specially tailored herbicides such as Monsanto’s Roundup. Unfortunately, weeds become resistant to these herbicides and become “super weeds.” There is no high-yield advantage, drought tolerance or any consumer benefit to using GE seeds as the biotech companies claim. Many countries in Europe require labeling of Genetically Engineered Foods. Despite the loss suffered by Prop 37 in California in November, 23 other states are pushing for legislation that would require labeling.


BY PAMELA HEATER AND MARIANNE DICKINSON n old farmhouse and field in Albuquerque’s North Valley is about to be transformed into a “pocket neighborhood,” with eight new homes clustered around a central plaza tucked behind the renovated farmhouse. The acequia that once fed the long-fallow field is being put to use for an enormous community vegetable and herb garden and a dozen fruit trees. (The subdivision’s name in Spanish, Acequia Jardin, means ditch-irrigated garden.)


Acequia Jardin is an innovative form of community being developed in what the creators refer to as a “hybrid” cohousing development. To save time involved in putting a cohousing community together from the ground up, the team decided to take ownership for initiating the land purchase and design of an infill housing compound. They are then bringing in the homeowners to define and create the community. This method has been well received. Five of the ten homes are already reserved and the homeowners are busily creating community through email and planning meetings and classes. This “hybrid” was specifically planned as a way to meet the needs of empty-nesters ready to change their priorities


Support Local Artists, Give Beautiful Gifts. For more information call 217-

2027 or 877-775-2667, OR e-mail:

ical involvement is critical for holding governments accountable to their constituents and for creating policies that ensure safe food and clean water.

We believe access to clean water is a human right, not a commodity. We believe in a sustainable future— one that ensures access to essential resources for future generations while protecting the quality of our environment. We are all dependent on shared CLEAN FOOD resources like clean water, safe food and healthy oceans. Food and Water Watch has staff located AND WATER 15 offices throughout the United States, workA HUMAN in ing with a range of constituencies to inform and hold policymakers accountable. International staff in Latin America and the European Union (Food and Water Europe) work with coalition partners to track the global impact of US corporations on public policy.

BY ELEANOR BRAVO, FOOD AND WATER WATCH, N.M. CHAPTER ood and Water Watch is a non-profit organization that advocates for commonsense policies that will result in healthy, safe food and access to safe and affordable drinking water. In 2011, we opened a field office in the Albuquerque area. Our main issues in New Mexico are fracking and food issues.


December 2012 15



Food and Water Watch is a public interest organization that remains independent of corporate and government influence. Funded fully through our members, individual donors, and foundation grants, we engage and mobilize citizens politically through onthe-ground organizing, educational campaigns and new media technologies. We believe grassroots polit-

Please help us now with our GMO RIGHT TO KNOW Campaign in New Mexico. The January 2013 legislative session will be here before we know it. To get involved contact Eleanor Bravo, Food and Water Watch New Mexico, 7804 Pan American Frwy. East NE #2, Albuquerque, NM 87109. Call 505633-7366 or

December 1 NOB HILL CO-OP December 15 SANTA FE CO-OP December 16 VALLEY CO-OP


from maintaining large homes to having greater personal freedom while living in a vibrant community with varied interests. The project, due to a city zoning change, had to be approved by Albuquerque’s Environmental Planning Commission. Unanimously approved, it was praised as being "the most innovative and necessary project to be presented to our committee in years." Acequia Jardin incorporates key elements based on the needs of an intelligent and demanding boomer population: smaller houses designed to encourage sociability among residents while maintaining privacy and personal home ownership. That means having front porches, shared spaces like courtyards or green commons, clustered parking instead of attached garages, community gardens, common activity spaces and even guest rooms for visitors. The compound is located at 2334 Rio Grande Blvd. NW, adjacent to the North Valley Co-op. Construction is expected to begin by January and completed by mid-summer 2013. Contact PAMELA HEATER at 505-710-0021 or or www.acequia






La Montanita Coop Connection December, 2012  

The La Montanita Coop Connection is a monthly publication about food and issues affecting our local foodshed. Membership in La Montañita Co-...

La Montanita Coop Connection December, 2012  

The La Montanita Coop Connection is a monthly publication about food and issues affecting our local foodshed. Membership in La Montañita Co-...