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Project Update CO-OP COMMUNITY COLLABORATION Veteran Farmer Holistic Management International adds Animal Husbandry to

TRAINING PROGRAM BY FRANK ARAGONA, DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS, HMI olistic Management International (HMI) is currently working with La Montanita Co-op to expand the Co-op’s highly successful Veteran Farmer Project (VFP) training program. Past sessions of the program have focused on vegetable crop production and participating veterans requested training in animal husbandry. When Robin Seydel of La Montanita approached us about adding a livestock and ranching component, we were excited about the opportunity. The VFP program is designed to achieve three primary objectives: 1. To get veterans involved in agriculture 2. To give veterans an introduction to basic farming skills 3. To provide healing opportunities for veterans


HMI is a non-profit organization based in Albuquerque whose mission is to educate people to manage land for a sustainable future. For over three decades we have worked with agricultural producers on various land management challenges. In the past, HMI was primarily focused on ranching, sustainable grazing practices, and livestock management. The new HMI honors our tradition of land restoration through grazing management, but we have come to recognize the importance of offering business management training to small and medium-sized agricultural producers, regardless of their production model. With this in mind, HMI is working with La Montanita and the local Veteran’s Administration office to put together a program for veterans that has elements of business planning and live-

stock production. This program will combine hands-on field-day training and classroom business management learning. The field-day trainings consist of five sessions on local ranches that will commence in September and end in late October. The local ranching community has embraced this program and graciously offered their facilities to serve as local learning sites. For example, we will be visiting the Old Windmill Dairy to learn about the management of small stock, in this case goats. The Lone Mountain Ranch in Golden, NM, has offered their facility so participants can learn how to assess available grazing forage and then build a grazing plan based on forage information. Other trainings will focus on monitoring the condition of the land and low-stress livestock handling. Trainings will be facilitated by Dr. Ann Adams, HMI’s Director of Community Services, whose past participation in Veteran Farmer Project trainings was greatly appreciated by veteran participants. Classroom sessions will begin in mid-January 2014 and will wrap up by the end of February. The classroom sessions will focus on the essentials of Whole Farm Business Planning, including how to set a Whole Farm Goal, Effective On-Farm Decision-Making, Record Keeping, Financial Planning, and Enterprise Analysis. If you have participated in the Veteran Farmer Project or are a local veteran interested in participating, please pre-

TRAININGS begin in September

register to be included in the program. The VFP program is open to all veterans and active service personnel in all branches of service. To pre-register, please contact Robin Seydel at La Montanita Co-op by email at robins or by telephone at 505-217-2027 or toll free at 877-775-2667 or John Shields at or call him at 505-256-6499, ext. 5638. We look forward to working with our local ranching and veteran communities as part of this exciting program. FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT HMI, our programs or to make a donation, please go to www. IT’S YOUR CO-OP!

An Introduction to the Board’s Proposed

La Montanita Co-op is pleased TO ANNOUNCE THE

BYLAWAMENDMENTS BY MARSHALL KOVITZ, VICE PRESIDENT BOARD OF DIRECTORS his is the first of two articles about proposed bylaw amendments that owners will be asked to vote on this November. We will offer a relatively general overview now, while an October article will contain more detail.


The Bylaws Amendments Committee along with the Board’s legal advisors periodically review our bylaws and propose amendments in order to align them with the changing needs of both the owners and the Coop’s operations. We may also recommend amending the bylaws to include procedures and guidelines we have already been following as a matter of course. This year, the Board is proposing two very detailed amendments and we would like to start explaining them now so that owners have time to ask questions. The first amendment deals with lifetime memberships and how requests for refunds are handled. The current language, Section 1.2.5, allows for a full refund after two years. The proposed new wording calls for refunds to include a deduction of $15 dollars per year for every year the lifetime membership was in effect. The Board feels this is fairer to the Co-op, since the owner will have enjoyed membership benefits such as patronage dividends and discount shopping for those years and the Co-op would have borne the associated costs. The

amendment would apply only to those owners who purchase a lifetime membership after this proposal is approved. Those who purchased a lifetime membership previously, will be entitled to the full refund. To gain perspective on the proposed change, since this program was created in the late 1990s, the Co-op has collected about 520 lifetime memberships and has had a total of about 10 requests for refunds.



An additional proposed change is who decides whether to refund the lifetime membership. Currently, the decision rests with the Board. The proposed amendment states that the general manager, in consultation with the Board President, will make the decision. This delegation is consistent with the fact that the Board relies on the general manager to recommend the appropriate level of capitalization. The second proposed amendment deals with changes to Article IX, Capitalization. One change involves substituting the term “Patronage Dividend,” for the current, “Patronage Refund.” This new language results in no operational change, but more accurately reflects the ownership aspect of membership. To understand the many details in the rest of this proposed amendment, we need to grasp the fundamentals of patronage dividends. When the Co-op has a profitable year—which is most of the time—it sets aside part of that profit as a patronage dividend for owners. The div-



• Tour the Foodshed Warehouse • Experience the MoGro truck (open for shopping) • Enjoy delicious Co-op picnic foods, vegetarian, vegan and fresh Co-op smoked and grilled local meat options • Participate in family fun including: A jolly jumper, art projects, scavenger hunts and more • Enjoy music from Wildewood Band • Hear state of your Co-op reports, meet Board of Directors candidates!


Sat.O Oct.12 11-2pm


in mid-October!

idend is proportionate to the owner’s business with the Coop during the previous year and must include a cash payment of at least 20% of the owner’s total dividend. The other 80% can be placed in member capital accounts and used by the Co-op to build needed equity. The advantage of this arrangement is that the IRS considers the entire amount—20% cash and 80% retained—to be nontaxable for the Co-op. By the way, both the 20% cash payment and the 80% retained are also considered nontaxable income to the owner as long as the owner purchased the groceries for ordinary household use. The Co-op has never refunded the retained portion of the patronage dividend and has no plans to do so. That’s because the Co-op really needs this capital to continue doing its good work. However, the Board does retain the authority to refund this equity and in the unlikely event it chooses to do so, the new language clarifies how it would happen. Find the full proposal on the Co-op’s website at www.lam As required by the bylaws, we will also send out a formal notice to all owners by October 1, including the full wording of the proposed amendments along with an explanation/justification. As mentioned earlier, the October newsletter will have a second article, explaining in greater detail what we propose and why. The November newsletter will contain the full proposal along with the list of board candidates running for election. For the second year, we will offer electronic voting through VoteNet and a summary of the proposals will be posted there as well. You can view the current bylaws here, www.lamontanita. coop/index.php/directors/bylaws, or you can go to the information desk of any store to view a paper copy. And In the meantime, if you have questions or comments, CONTACT MARSHALL KOVITZ, Bylaws Amendments Committee, at 256-1241 or



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 • Operations Manager/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: • Valerie Smith/Nob Hill 265-4631 • John Mulle/Valley 242-8800 • William Prokopiak/Santa Fe 984-2852 • Michael Smith/Gallup 575-863-5383 Co-op Board of Directors: email: • President: Martha Whitman • Vice President: Marshall Kovitz • Secretary: Ariana Marchello • Treasurer: Susan McAllister • Lisa Banwarth-Kuhn • Kristy Decker • Jake Garrity • Jessica Rowland • 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 ©2013 La Montanita Co-op Supermarket Reprints by prior permission. The Co-op Connection is printed on 65% post-consumer recycled

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6th Annual Urban Farm and Harvest Festival Sunday, September 15, 10am-4pm

FREE BERNALILLO County workshops

OPEN SPACE KENT SWANSON, ASSOCIATE PLANNER/OPEN SPACE The City of Albuquerque Open Space Division manages over 366 acres of farmland both for food production and wildlife habitat. We’re proud to be a part of Albuquerque’s agricultural heritage, and for the sixth consecutive year we’re celebrating with a unique event for the whole family. This year we’ve joined forces with local farmers, businesses, and conservation organizations to bring attention to the drought and to help you learn techniques that will improve your gardening or farming techniques during this time of water scarcity. BY

Author Baker Morrow will be on hand to present information from his book New Mexico’s Favorite Plants Over 1,000 Years. Other highlights at this year’s festival include: seed saving workshop by Isuara Andaluz of Save New Mexico Seeds and workshops on “Food Forest Gardening” for gardens that take less work, less water and create more possibilities. Enjoy live music by the Happy Gland Band, Pawn Drive and others on a shaded patio overlooking a 24-acre working farm/wildlife preserve, straw bale rides, live raptor display with Wildlife Rescue, beekeeping demonstrations, kids art table and entertainment, gourmet food cart and a self guided tour of the “Traditions Garden” and land art sculptures. Please see space for up to date information on workshop and entertainment schedules. Don’t forget to bring a shopping bag and purchase local food and produce while you visit booths by farmers, artisans, businesses and non-profits working to protect agriculture and Open Space! Open Space Visitor Center, 6500 Coors Blvd. NW. For more information on this FREE fun family event go to or call 505-897-8831.


September 7/Food Preservation Methods This much loved workshop is back again! Find out how to put food up for the winter with methods such as hot bath canning, pressure canning and lacto-fermentations. Speakers Kim Pophal and Sofia Rose will elaborate on food preservation techniques, appropriate equipment and troubleshooting. Bring your favorite recipes to sample and share! From 9am-12:30pm at the GutierrezHubbell House (6029 Isleta Blvd. SW). September 13/Stargazing and Jazz Bernalillo County Open Space presents a Star Party featuring the Albuquerque Astronomical Society and the Oasis 103.7. Bring your picnic basket and blanket to enjoy a wide array of outdoor activities including a live broadcast by the Oasis, solar scopes, presentations and stargazing with TAAS, live acoustic jazz performance, kids activities, and free giveaways. From 6-10:30pm at Bachechi Open Space (9521 Rio Grande Blvd. NW). September 21/Seed Saving Seed saving is both art and science, but anyone can learn the basics on saving common veggie and herb seeds. See how saving garden favorites can ensure a more adaptable crop for the future in this informative workshop. Participants will practice harvesting homegrown tomato seeds as well as other commonly saved seeds. This workshop will be presented by expert Joshua Cravens of Save New Mexico Seeds and Arid Seed Cache. From 9am-12:30pm at the Gutierrez-Hubbell House (6029 Isleta Blvd. SW) September 28/Forest Ecology in the East Mountains Learn about the history and complex nature of our dryland forests and best management practices used by professional land managers to promote biodiversity while preventing forest fires in times of drought. Sue Hansen Putze, district manager of Ciudad Soil and Water Conservation District, will present a fuelwood thinning project at Ojito de San Antonio, discussing the process, applied techniques and end result. From 10am-12pm at Ojito de San Antonio. To register and for more information: openspace or call 505-314-0398.




SUSTAINABILITY CARBON ECONOMY SERIES CONTINUES BY IGINIA BOCCALANDRO or the third year in a row The Carbon Economy comes to Santa Fe and for the first time will cater to the Albuquerque audience with a big event, a three-day “Clean Economy Conference” focusing on sustainable living practices in January 2014. Given the changing climate, the tough economy, the ravaged environment and the rapid transition we are being asked to make, the theme of the 2013-2014 series is building resiliency in our personal lives and in our community and world. Huge changes call for new growth, increased strength, perseverance and tenacity; all of which will be present in our series. Learn how to apply the triple bottom line: that which is good for the planet, good for people and good for profit.


Renowned experts will come to Santa Fe and Albuquerque to teach sustainable tools to become more resilient in regards to food, health, water, energy, business, soil and climate change. In October, Matthew Brummett returns to teach aboriginal living skills with a one-day fire building course, ideal for youth and adults alike. Corporations and businesses can be green, they can be socially responsible and employees can be healthy, fulfilled and productive. Bea Boccalandro, owner of Veraworks who teaches at Boston College and Georgetown University, will explain how

high impact corporate community involvement is doing societal good and how Santa Fe can be the beneficiary of that good. Yes, she is my awesome little sister! In February 2014 we will have a module on wise water management. It just rained. Were you prepared? Find out how you can benefit from these rains. In March we will have a workshop on the soil food web: biological solutions for increasing fertility, reducing water usage and growing healthy crops. Our BIG event in January will be the Carbon Economy Series summit in Albuquerque where Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms will be a keynote speaker and teach an intensive seminar on integrated farming for food production and the power of mentoring at a pre-conference event. Two days of short, powerful plenary sessions with local experts will cover a myriad of sustainable subjects such as: bees, seeds, wise water management, soil food web, permaculture design, energy efficiency, Pueblo agriculture, zero waste and a sustainability trade show. Attention all foodies, there will be a delicious, farm to table, gourmet chef Steward’s dinner with Joel Salatin. Funds raised from the event will provide scholarships for deserving participants. La Montanita Co-op, the Inn of Governors, Sweet Water Harvest Kitchen, Joe’s Diner, Santa Fe Community College, Arete Consulting Group, Los Alamos National Bank, Green Fire Times, and Santa Fe Farmers Market Institute will all be our sponsors this year. The one-day workshops have been reduced in price to $145 and we now have a NEW Season Pass (sign up and prepay for three or more workshops and you will enjoy big savings). As a Season Pass holder you will have access to workshops for $99 each, for you and as many friends and family as you would like to invite. IGINIA BOCCALANDRO is the founder of Carbon Economy Series, a New Mexico non-profit dedicated to education on shrinking our carbon footprint. She lives in Santa Fe, grows strawberries and dahlias for Farmers’ Markets and has a private practice in Rolfing: Structural Integration Therapy on Luisa St. For more information: www.carbon or call 505-819-3828.

our children

our future

September 2013 3



was published in late July, does not contain similar language that would limit EPA’s regulatory authority. However, the bill still has to make it through committee and a floor vote where it will have opportunity to be amended.


BY STEPHANIE DAVIO, BEYOND PESTICIDES uring the most recent legislative session, there have been several attempts by Congress to strip the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of its regulatory authority to phase out the toxic fumigant sulfuryl fluoride. A 2006 National Research Council (NRC) report found that aggregate exposure to fluoride for infants and children under the age of seven years old exceeds its safe reference dose level. EPA, with pressure from environmental groups, proposed to eliminate all agricultural uses of sulfuryl fluoride. Exposure to sulfuryl fluoride can cause adverse health effects such as bone fractures, pre-clinical skeletal fluorosis, and severe dental fluorosis.


In June, a rider was inserted into the House of Representatives 2014 Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill that would not allow EPA to use any funds it received through this appropriations act to revoke tolerances for sulfuryl fluoride. The US House of Representatives Committee deliberations will continue when Congress reconvenes on September 6th after the August recess. The Senate’s draft version of their Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill, which


EPA first allowed sulfuryl fluoride to be used as a direct fumigant on various grains and dried fruits in 2004 because it was viewed as a possible alternative to methyl bromide. The US, under the Montreal protocol, is obligated to phase out all uses of methyl bromide due to its contribution to ozone depletion. In 2011, EPA revised its sulfuryl fluoride human health risk assessment and came to a similar conclusion as the NRC report. As a result of this finding EPA proposed an order to cancel all allowable pesticide residue levels (tolerances) and phase out all food-related uses for sulfuryl fluoride over a three-year period. We need your help to make sure EPA is not handcuffed by an out of touch Congress. Please contact Senator Udall and to tell him not to add similar language to the Senate version of the bill and to make sure that this attempt to limit EPA’s authority is not allowed in the eventual conference bill. More information can be found at www.beyond Call Senator Udall at 505-346-6791 or 505-988-6511.




through entrepreneurial Models

young adults; critically improving the health of the community and the positive youth outcomes.

¡YouthWorks! is a new model for youth development through sustainable partnerships and community reinvestment. They engage marginalized youth in the Santa Fe area who have been excluded from traditional educational contexts and who may be at risk of criminal and gang activity. ¡YouthWorks! provides free life skills and leadership development training along with job training, experience in environmentally based work crews and apprenticeships with local businesses to build job skills and self esteem. ¡YouthWorks! is dedicated to entrepreneurial models for youth workforce development that will position Santa Fe's youth at the forefront of revolutions in energy efficiency and alternative energy fields.

¡Youthwork!’s Alternative Education program is an innovative, social services rich, educational program that addresses the problem of high school dropouts as well as school "pushouts" in their transition to meaningful work and higher education. Through daily GED preparatory instruction, tutoring, job training, college prep instruction, and counseling, youth develop critical work habits and basic educational aptitude. ¡YouthWorks!’s educational programming is woven together with job training and skills building in an integrated approach to positive youth development.

Formed in 2001 to address the lack of meaningful alternative education, a lack of employment opportunities for disconnected youth in Santa Fe and to provide prevention education and counseling services to the large numbers of youth in need; the organization began by launching education and employment training through the creation of the Santa Fe Youth Corps program. Collaborating with NM Youth Conservation Corps, and Lifeskills Training and Counseling for youth in the Santa Fe Public Schools, ¡YouthWorks! has grown since its inception to have many partners. It has served thousands of youth while expanding youth development opportunities that include high impact interventions, youth advocacy, alternative education, leadership training and employment connections for youth and

A central goal of ¡YouthWorks! has always been to create the types of jobs for young people that provide career training in fields that address both the needs of the youth community as well as those of the local economy. For ten years, ¡YouthWorks! crew members have been working on community improvement and environmental restoration projects. In the beginning, for a variety of reasons, these crew members often had no food for lunch. The YW Culinary Program was born out of the need to ensure that these young workers had access to hot meals to power them through the work day. ¡YouthWorks! receives 100% of its funding from private donations and grants from local and state governmental agencies and private foundations. To directly support youth in our community, donate your bag credit today or donate online at

THIS MONTH BAG CREDIT DONATIONS GO TO: ¡Youthworks!: Engaging marginalized youth in entrepreneurial models and sustainable partnerships through life skills training and community reinvestment. IN JULY your bag credit donations totaling $2,122.30 were given to Animal Protection of New Mexico. Thank you!!!!



NEW WESTSIDE LOCATION! Opening in mid-October!

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.

food & environment SAVE Dairy REGULATION!



September 2013 4



NMED has apparently continued to issue permits and draft permits that do not meet the requirements of the new Dairy Rule. It is almost impossible to challenge the flood of permits coming out now that there is a Dairy Rule. The NMED issues draft permit documents in large batches every

MICHAEL JENSEN, AMIGOS BRAVOS n September 10, 2013, the Water Quality Control Commission (WQCC) was scheduled to hear a petition from the dairy industry to make significant modifications to the Dairy Rule. Instead, the WQCC announced that the original petition is on hold while the WQCC considers a new petition from industry that completely guts the Dairy Rule which protects precious groundwater that people fought so hard for a few years back. BY


Gutting the Rule Earlier this year, the industry submitted a petition to change the Rule. The areas they wanted changed involved several issues that the industry opposed but which they signed onto in 2012 and which the WQCC in both 2010 and 2011 approved. These included requirements that the Citizens Group won for monitoring wells and flow meters (necessary to assess whether the dairy was complying with their discharge limits and also to assess the application of wastewater to crops).

It is critically important that as many people as possible come to the hearing and make a brief comment opposing the new petition. If people cannot come—or even if they can—it is also vital that they write a comment to the WQCC [more info below]. The Dairy Rule In 2009, the Legislature passed a bill requiring the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) write wastewater rules specifically for the dairy and copper mining industries. The industries believed they could control the process, but under the Richardson administration, the NMED opened up the process to the public and stakeholder groups, including Amigos Bravos and the Sierra Club, who created a Citizens Group representing people in areas impacted by dairies. After nearly two years of public and stakeholder meetings, a Dairy Rule was approved by the WQCC in December 2010. However, in the first week of Governor Martinez’ administration, she pressured a state agency to block implementation of the new Rule. Amigos Bravos and others took her to the New Mexico Supreme Court, where she lost, and the Rule was set to go into effect. At this point, the dairy industry sued to block the rule. The stakeholders— industry, NMED, and the Citizens Group—spent many months re-negotiating the Rule and at the end of 2011, all three stakeholder groups signed an agreement stating that they approved the new (new) Dairy Rule; the WQCC approved it and the Dairy Rule went into effect in January 2012. Watching the Watchers We eventually learned that within a few months (maybe even a few weeks) the dairy industry had been in private discussions with the NMED about making significant changes to the Rule. We also learned that the NMED was starting to write draft permits and permit modifications that clearly and blatantly violated the terms of the new Rule. Despite a challenge from Amigos Bravos over the draft permit for the largest dairy in the state, the

C O - O P T R A D E F O O D S H E D I N I T I AT I V E


GOOD FOOD BY SARAH WENTZEL-FISHER In this third installment on the Co-op Distribution Center, we’ll look at how the CDC helps small, rural co-ops and mom-and-pop grocery stores keep healthy and clean food on their shelves, and how they, in turn help our rural neighbors have access to good food. Unlike conventional distributors, the CDC’s size and scale accommodate service to more remote locations and to smaller stores throughout New Mexico.

In addition, many dairies do not have adequate (or even any) monitoring of the waste application areas they use to dispose of their lagoon wastewater. Many dairies also do not have adequate measures of how much wastewater they apply, what the quantity of nutrients (nitrogen compounds) the wastewater contains, or how nutrients are taken up by the crops and therefore prevented from running off the fields or percolating into the groundwater.

few months. There is only a 30-day period to file a challenge requesting a hearing on a draft permit. In order to make an effective challenge, it is necessary to look at the file for each dairy with possible problems with their permit. The NMED, claiming that they need to review every file for confidential material, can take several weeks to clear just one dairy’s file. Clearly, the process makes it almost impossible to review and challenge permits without significantly greater resources. (Un)Documented Pollution The NMED has documented that about 65% of all dairies in the state have already contaminated the groundwater with nitrates. If other regulated contaminants are included, the percentage is higher. The problem is almost without a doubt even worse. Most dairies do not have reliable information on groundwater flow direction (that is, the direction the water under the dairy moves and would carry pollution). That means that it is very difficult to put monitoring wells in the right locations to detect underground contamination. On top of that, many dairies do not have enough wells to cover all the potential sources of contaminants and most dairies have monitoring wells that have never been evaluated for whether they were installed correctly and producing reliable data.

For distributors of all sorts of goods, including groceries, unless they can fill a truck, and unless a store is on a regular route off a major transportation corridor, they won’t make a delivery. Small grocers, particularly in rural areas, struggle to make orders large enough to meet minimum requirements for delivery through providers like Sysco or UNFI. Often, it is only once a month, and sometimes less frequently, that this size grocery store will make an order through one of these companies. Perishable items usually only last for a short period at the beginning of the month, if they get ordered at all. Products are highly processed, shelf-stable goods, frequently with low nutritional value, meaning these are the foods rural New Mexicans have access to if they shopped at their local grocery store. The CDC provides access to natural foods and perishable items for small grocers on a more regular basis than larger distrubtors. Currently, the CDC can make weekly deliveries to stores like the Silver City Co-op, Dixon Co-op, Mountain View Co-op, Los Alamos Co-op, Gallup Co-op, Tesuque Village Market, Sol Foods in Arroyo Seco, The Bodega in





Now, the industry has submitted a new petition to fundamentally alter or eliminate every section of the Dairy Rule that involves monitoring and data collection. It is a naked attempt to gut the entire Rule.

A C T I O N A L E R T ! D A I RY S E P T. 1 0



• COME TO THE WQCC HEARING ON SEPTEMBER 10TH Information about the hearing is available here: www. • PREPARE PUBLIC COMMENT AND/OR WRITTEN TESTIMONY FOR THE HEARING. Amigos Bravos and our allies are still planning our response and will have talking points and a draft letter at least a week before the hearing. Visit the Amigos Bravos web site for more information: www.amigos; become a member of Amigos Bravos or Sierra Club (or both!) and receive action alerts and updates. • BE PREPARED FOR AN EFFORT BY INDUSTRY TO GET THE LEGISLATURE TO ELIMINATE OR DRASTICALLY CHANGE THE REGULATION OF THE DAIRY INDUSTRY. Also look for a new effort to pass anti-“nuisance” legislation, which would make it impossible for anyone to hold a farm operation responsible for dust, flies, public health impacts, or any other form of “nuisance” due to “normal” operations. FOR MORE INFORMATION, contact Michael Jensen

Taos, the Inn and Mercantile in Ojo Caliente, and Kaune’s Neighborhood Market in Santa Fe, if they need to make an order. In addition, the CDC can deliver locally sourced items, like Estancia beans or Freeana Yoghurt, not available through other distributors. For New Mexicans living in rural communities, this translates into healthier and more locally sourced food in stores closer to home. Rather than having to drive to Santa Fe or Albuquerque to shop for groceries and to find items like fresh veggies, real cheese or brown rice, they can shop at the small grocer down the road. Rather than having to load up at Costco or Sam’s Club once a month when they journey to town, they can shop more frequently for fresher items. By providing access for smaller grocers, the CDC helps green the immense food deserts created by the limitations of more conventional food distribution systems.

Local Food:

CLOSER to home!

fair trade cooperation





A hectare is roughly 2.5 acres and is the standard measure for farms in this part of the world. The production goal for a hectare is 1,500 pounds of coffee beans. What follows is a rough schedule of the seasonal work that the farmer will follow for each hectare in production. 1. Choose seed from best performing trees, looking for disease resistance, growth pattern and productivity. 2. In January, prepare a 3 x 1 meter seedling bed to hold 4,000 seedlings that germinate in 60 days. 3. Transplant 4,000 seedlings into transplant bags where they stay until about one foot tall. 4. Prepare soil, dig hole and plant transplants. One worker can do

about 100 per day. If all goes well, no sickness or family needs, the farmer can get these all planted in about six weeks of daily work. Stone walls are maintained on the steep hillsides to prevent erosion. 5. April should bring plenty of rain. One month after transplant, trees are weeded and fertilized, using compost from the prior harvest cherries and manure. 6. Every year there will be three fertilizations and three weedings. Three years later there will be coffee to harvest sometime between May and September. 7. The coffee harvest requires several passes through the trees to collect berries as they ripen. 8. On each harvest day fresh picked cherries are depulped or pitted, and the bean is fermented, cleaned and set out to dry. This happens at the Co-op’s beneficio with the now electric de-pulper. 9. The beans are dryed and then packed to work their way to market. All dropped cherries must be cleaned off the ground around the trees because the coffee bore will hatch from the litter and damage the trees. Also, the coffee trees are pruned along with the shade trees that are mixed in the planting.


Three years ago electricity finally became available to Coyona. Most homes in the pueblo now have at least a few light bulbs and outlets. This also allowed the Co-op to switch the de-pulping machinery from diesel to electric, which runs cleaner and is more quiet to operate. The most obvious change I saw as soon as we drove into Coyona was the Co-op warehouse building. The old building was dark and deteriorating. This new building has good light, storage, meeting space and an office. There are a few small rooms with beds and several bathrooms with showers that the farmers and other farm guests use. The Co-op financed this building using a loan through Cepicafe and each coop member volunteered seven days of labor during the construction phase! Evidently some members were so excited and invested in the new building that they volunteered several weeks of extra time. It seems that whether a co-op associate or not, everyone in town takes an interest in the Co-op and is proud of the new building. NEXT MONTH: Part Two of Michelle’s report from Peru.




OUR GRASSROOTS INVESTING and micro-loan FUND is currently making loans to FOOD PRODUCERS of all sizes. CONTACT Robin at 877-775-2667 or



qual Exchange was founded in 1986, to challenge the existing large scale corporate trade model, support small farmers and connect consumers and producers through information, education and the exchange of products in the marketplace. Joining a growing movement of small farmers, alternative traders (ATOs), religious organizations and non-profits throughout the world with the shared belief that only through organization can small farmers survive and thrive; Equal Exchange believes that the cooperative model is essential for building economic justice and change. Equal Exchange is a for-profit worker cooperative whose structure is based on standard democratic principles. It is not designed to maximize profits, nor returns to investors, but rather to bring to the workplace many of the rights and responsibilities that we hold as citizens in our communities. These principles include one-person/one-vote equality; open access to information (i.e., open-book management); free speech; and the equitable distribution of resources (such as income.) Fair Trade is a way of doing business with the goal of keeping for small farmers an active part of the world marketplace and empowering consumers to make purchases that support their values. Fair Trade is a set of business practices voluntarily adopted by the producers and buyers of agricultural commodities and handmade crafts, and designed to advance many economic, social and environmental goals, including: • Raising and stabilizing the incomes of small-scale farmers, farm workers and artisans;

• More equitably distributing the economic gains, opportunities and risks associated with the production and sale of these goods; • Increasing the organizational and commercial capacities of producer groups; • Supporting democratically owned and controlled producer organizations; • Promoting labor rights and the right of workers to organize; • Promoting safe and sustainable farming methods and working conditions; • Connecting consumers and producers and increasing consumer awareness and engagement with issues affecting producers. THE FAIR TRADE PRACTICES that advance these goals typically, but not always, include: • Direct trade relationships and long-term contracts between importers and producer groups, • Sourcing from small-farmer or artisan cooperatives and providing higher than conventional market prices, providing affordable access to capital, adherence to the policies of the International Labor Organization, especially those concerning child and forced labor, and the right to collective bargaining. Fair Trade organizations utilize third-party independent external audits and certification of organic practices that prohibit the use of dangerous pesticides and herbicides and provide substantial price premiums for the production of certified organic crops. Look for a wide variety of Equal Exchange fairly traded products at all Co-op locations. Learn more at:

GOat GREEN ! your Get your locally grown GREEN VEGGIES CO-OP

September 2013 5

Growing the Cooperative The farmers continue to benefit from agronomist attention provided through Co-op NORANDINO and Cepicafe, its nonprofit sister organization. Since my last visit the composting process has been improved and all the water from the depulping process is cleaned before running back into the river. There seems to be a more complete understanding of organic practices and the holistic approach that the farmers are so proud to be participating in.

BY MICHELLE FRANKLIN, CO-OP DISTRIBUTION CENTER MANAGER en years ago, Equal Exchange, a worker owned cooperative focused on importing Fair Trade goods, invited me to go to Peru to visit their coffee growers. It was an amazing experience. To my surprise I was invited back this summer on a reunion visit to explore what has changed. I will be reporting over the next few months about my trip and what I have learned, starting with some basics on what goes into the coffee crop at the farm level. Cooperative Coffee Our trip was focused on production in the region of Piura, Peru, which is at the northern part of the country bordering on Ecuador. The capital city, also named Piura, is a hustling commercial center of about 400,000 people. Traveling from Piura, about five hours on four-wheel-drive roads into the mountains, is Coyona, a small pueblo of 650. This is the home of the Cooperativa Jose Gabriel Condorcanqui, one of the 90 farmer co-ops that own the second level Co-op NORANDINO. The population of the pueblo has not changed since my visit ten years ago but the number of farmers who are now co-op members has risen from 200 to 250. A lot of work goes into producing our morning cup of Joe, so it is amazing that more farmers are coming on board; It is a testament to Fair Trade practices in the region, a strong supportive second level co-op, and individuals’ commitment to an agrarian lifestyle.


at any Co-op location. Fresh, fair, organic...

co-op news

September 2013 6


BOARD MEETINGS? BY MARSHALL KOVITZ, VICE-PRESIDENT BOARD OF DIRECTORS ver the years, we’ve described how the Board governs on behalf of you, the owners. This month we’d like to go into a little more detail, explaining how our monthly agenda works and who the participants are.



Other participants include those who provide essential support to the Board. Jennifer Cornish, long-time volunteer, facilitates our meetings, keeping the Board on track. Deborah Good, administrative assistant, takes minutes and keeps our important documents up


The Board has created a standard agenda whose details change with each meeting but whose overall structure remains the same, allowing us to do our job efficiently and effectively. And that job can be divided into four categories: 1. Assure organizational success; 2. Self-perpetuation; 3. Create a strategic vision born of an understanding of the world around us; 4. Linkage with the owners. As we review our agenda process we’ll see how it allows us to accomplish these tasks, but first, let’s look at who the players are. Your Board of Directors consists of nine members, elected at large for three-year terms. Realizing that not all Board members may be present for every meeting, the authors of our bylaws defined a quorum as six members. Further, a Board member may participate remotely, calling into our telephone conferencing system or Skyping in. Terry Bowling, our general manager, is nearly always present, prepared to present his monthly report to us. The general manager is critical to the success of the Co-op. Recognizing this, Board policies require that Terry appoint at least two other senior staff people to be familiar enough with his job so that they can step in should he be unable to work. These senior staff people usually attend as well.



to date. To assist the Board with its visioning work, Sarah Skenazy, the Board’s research assistant, prepares our monthly study sessions. Those sessions may include guest speakers who also join us. Finally, other Co-op staff as well as owners sometimes attend and are always welcome. A substantial part of the agenda is driven by our annual planning calendar, a document we created that lists month by month the issues we need to address. The calendar is essential to getting our work done in a timely manner. Our meetings always start with a delicious meal prepared by the Nob Hill store’s deli, and all those attending are welcome to join in. Following dinner and a goaround of introductions, we review the evening’s agenda and make any needed changes. The agenda, detailed proposals, and all supporting documents are made available one week in advance, so everyone can come prepared and ready to make decisions.

Come check us out and see what we’re about!

Before the Board gets to work, we allow a brief period for owners’ comments. This is the time for visitors to discuss their concerns; we also review any emails, letters or phone calls we’ve received. This is one of the many ways the Board keeps in touch with owners. Next, we take up the consent agenda, a handy device for quickly dealing with non-controversial issues that we must nevertheless act upon. All such issues—approval of meeting minutes, for example— are lumped together and voted on with little or no discussion. But in case there are concerns, any board member may request a consent agenda item be pulled and be subject to more detailed review.

The general manager’s monitoring report comes next. Each month Terry submits a report dealing with crucial aspects of the Co-op’s operations, explaining how he complies with Board policies on those issues. For example, one month he may report on financial performance, other months reporting will discuss treatment of staff and treatment of consumers. And once a year Terry reports on the Co-op’s accomplishments of the Board’s Ends policies—the policies that describe the benefits the Co-op creates for its owners and for the larger community. The Board’s reporting requirements are comprehensive, describing all the Coop’s essential functions so reports of compliance by our general manager allow us assure our owners that we are succeeding. After voting on the general manager’s report, the Board turns to any proposals from its committees. Such proposals often require discussion and are taken up one at a time. For example, each spring the Nominations and Elections Committee will produce a proposal for running the Board election. The Finance Committee writes a proposal each year which defines the scope of the Co-op’s annual financial review. Discussion of the above matters is generally scheduled to be completed within one hour. During the second hour we do our visioning work, examining strategic issues which are likely to shape our world and require an appropriate response if we are to remain relevant to our owners’ lives. For example, we recently studied the youthful generation known as Millennials, their concerns, values and how they impact the world. Other monthly topics have included: 1. The long-term water shortage in New Mexico and its implications for agriculture. 2. Various models of cooperation worldwide. 3. Understanding financial statements. In the near future, we will be posting our study materials on La Montanita’s web site, including an invitation to owners to join us for conversation and desert. We wrap things up with a few housekeeping chores and then adjourn our regular meeting. If needed, we then meet in executive session. Our meeting process has evolved over the years and we feel it serves us well. As always, you are invited to join us and to let us know what you think. Meetings start at 5:30pm and are on the third Tuesday of each month. Location is Immanuel Presbyterian Church, across Carlisle from the Nob Hill store. Enter through the more northern of the two doors facing Carlisle. Come a few minutes early and join us for dinner. SEE YOU THERE!





or the seventh year, La Montanita Co-op has funded the Cooking with Kids program at our neighborhood school, Gonzales Elementary in Santa Fe. The program provides a healthy food cooking experience for every child in the school. The curriculum incorporates math, science, geography and cultural traditions as well as the joys of eating what students have themselves prepared. Our deepest thanks to Lynn Walters, Deb Barbe and the Cooking with Kids faculty and staff for their ongoing efforts to inspire our community kids to enjoy good healthy food in a fun and educational way. Compliments of Cooking with Kids, please enjoy this delicious paella recipe. Vegetable Paella with Flatbread and Green Salad Many people recognize paella as a rice and seafood dish from Spain, but there are many different kinds of paella. There are seafood paellas, meat paellas, vegetable paellas, and a famous one called arroz negro, made with squid “ink”! Centuries ago, the Moors brought rice and the spe-

cial crocus plant that produces saffron from the Middle East to Spain. Vegetable Paella 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/2 medium white onion, chopped up 1/2 red or green bell pepper, washed and diced 1 cup medium-grain white rice, such as Cal Rose or Arborio 1/8 teaspoon turmeric 2 cups broth, chicken or vegetable 2 medium tomatoes, washed and diced or 1/2 cup canned diced tomatoes 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon paprika 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme 3 saffron threads, optional 1 cup frozen peas 1 tablespoon chopped parsley In a large skillet or paella pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring often until the vegetables have softened. Stir in the rice and turmeric and cook 1 minute more. Add the broth, tomatoes, salt, paprika, thyme and saffron, if using. Bring to a boil, stir once, cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 25 to 30 minutes, until all the liquid has been absorbed. Add the peas and parsley. Remove from the heat and let sit, covered, for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Serves 4 to 6.

co-op news COMMUNITIES One of my favorite activities is riding my motorcycle. When I was eleven years old I threw my leg across a Honda 50 mini bike and I was hooked for life. I love all motorcycles; I don’t care if it is a Harley or a moped, as long as it has two wheels and a motor, I’m in. I’ve ridden them all, during my life so far, and never had a bike I didn’t like. It hard to explain the pleasure of riding to those who don’t ride but it is my way of relaxing. One of the best parts of riding a motorcycle is seeing other motorcyclists as you ride. Most motorcyclists will acknowledge each other with the motorcycle rider wave which is basically just extending your arm out, but this is more than saying hello, it says I understand your passion for riding and it’s great to have you as part of the community. Most of us belong to some unofficial community or several “official” communities that form because of common interest. La Montanita is very much a community of people with a common interest in good food.

September 2013 7



The Co-op welcomes all! We can have different opinions and not always agree on everything but that’s okay. I believe most of us agree that the work our Co-op does to support our New Mexico communities and co-ops throughout the country is very much worth the effort. Every time you shop at La Montanita you are supporting New Mexicans, our local economy and the cooperative community ownership business model. None of our corporate competitors can make this claim. Thank you for your support of our Co-op and help in our efforts to let others in our community know how great it is to be part of the cooperative community. We don’t have a co-op wave but maybe we should think of one, a wave that says I understand. Please let me know if I can be of service, my e-mail is or by phone at 505-217-2020. -TERRY B. GENERAL MANAGER’S COLUMN

EATING an APPLE A DAY? BY AMYLEE UDELL have a secret. I don't like apples; at least not raw. Even I am tempted by the sound of someone biting into one and the satisfying munching that follows. The rest of my family loves them. "We must always have apples in the house" is an unspoken rule, even if I say, "but they're not in season right now." My family does a dance of pure delight when the B's Unpasteurized Apple Cider makes its annual debut at the Co-op. Apples can be enjoyed so many ways and with a little planning, can last quite awhile.


The best and easiest thing to do with an abundance of apples is share them! They make a great classroom or office snack. Other ideas for enjoying apples right now are: switching to PB&A sandwiches; adding them to brussels sprouts or winter squash (just try it); including them in a sausage and egg bake; adding them to coleslaws, salsas and green salads; or baking them whole (I do this in the crockpot) for a delicious breakfast or dessert. An Apple for All Seaons One way to preserve apples that can be fairly quick is freezing. You can freeze them in any state of preparation, starting with whole apples. Just wash them and freeze them on a tray before before transferring to freezer bags. You'll lose the crispness but can use the apples for sauces and baking. If you have a little more time, peel, cut and core the apples before freezing on trays. You can take it a step further by adding sugar and spices to get it ready for pie filling. You'll be able to take out the filling and just add it to your crust, adding a little extra baking time if the fruit is still frozen.


YA R D SALE! 9AM-3PM SAT. Sept.21


202 Harvard SE Donations: 9/18-9/20 More info call 268-9557

If you are a canner, you can stock up on apples and make the abundance last until next season. Many people do this in the form of apple jams, butters and jellies that can be used in pies and other baked goods, but also in smoothies, oatmeal, chutneys, yogurt, fried for breakfast or dinner and even ice cream. For non-canners, how else can you preserve fresh apples for as long as possible? Tart apples with thick skins are best for this. Do not wash the apples, choose apples that have no soft spots, bruises or holes. "One bad apple spoils the whole lot," as they say. Then wrap each one in black and white print newspaper, twisting at the top into a little autumn gift. Store them in a cool, dry place, away from potatoes. A cardboard box works well to hold them. According to Preserving Food without Freezing or Canning, storing apples in elderberry flowers gives them a pineapple flavor over time. I would love to try that! You can also dehydrate your fresh apples, using a dehydrator or oven. Also consider string drying over gentle heat source. The Preserving Food book suggests taking your wrapped apples well into winter, then as they begin to wrinkle, dry them. Dehydrated apples can also be stored with elderberry flowers for the above mentioned pineapple effect. Dehydrated apples make great snacks, as well as additions to breakfast grains, yogurt, granola, cookies, breads, teas and other warm beverages. Apple sauce is a staple in many households. I make mine in a crockpot and often don't peel the apples, giving the sauce a pinkish hue (if using red

september Calendar

of Events 9/17 BOD Meeting, Immanuel Church, 5:30pm 9/23 Member Engagement Meeting VETERAN FARMER PROJECT ANIMAL HUSBANDRY TRAININGS BEGIN IN SEPT.

October 12! SAVE THE DATE! Annual Membership Gathering, Co-op Harvest Picnic. See page 1.

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.

apples). The crockpot allows me to keep an eye on it from a distance and to make a big batch. I may add cinnamon but even adding nothing yields a just-sweet-enough sauce that can be used plain, added to yogurt, coated on nuts or granola, baked into cookies and cakes, put into popsicles, served with pork chops or more. You can also take your sauce and dehydrate it for a fruit roll snack that travels well. Fermenting apples can give you some variety in your usual apple bounty. Try a chutney or relish with apple in it. Or add them to your sauerkraut. While sweet, the fermentation still gives a nice, unexpected flavor kick. Or you can take it to the wild side and look at hard cider, apple mead, apple wine! How about apple-infused vodka? Finally, try making apple cider vinegar! I tried this last year. It appealed to me (I almost wrote a-peeled) because I could use the scraps and cores! I was making other apple goodies and I took the peels and cores, put them in jars, added water and waited. That's basically it! It's a great family project and an example of waste not, want not. Embrace the cooler weather, the bountiful harvest and all the gifts of the versatile apple. FOR MORE INFORMATION contact Amylee at or

Rio Grande Community Farm North Valley, Albuquerque


io Grande Community Farm is a 50-acre, non-profit urban farm located in the Los Poblanos Fields Open Space in the North Valley of ABQ. Providing healthy, organic food for local schools, restaurants, and stores, they also offer membership in a thriving community garden, support local food networks, and maintain wildlife habitat. The education department provides fun-filled, farm visits and specialized workshops for children and adults. Rio Grande Community Farm is home to coyotes, hawks, many species of song birds, and hundreds of migrating Sandhill Cranes and Canadian Geese. Since its inception in 1997, RGCF has contracted with the City of Albuquerque to farm 52.5 acres of Los Poblanos Open Space, and plants 25% of their acreage in wildlife crops, including corn, sunflowers and grains such as sorghum. These crops are left in the fields for migrating birds and local wildlife.

Rio Grande CF is committed to the future of organic farming and good agricultural practices (GAP).

Rancho Durazno Palisade, Colorado


from Palisade, Colorado Durazno’s organically grown peaches are nourished with compost and flowering cover crops and warmed by Colorado’s desert sun. Fruit that ripens in these conditions has a concentration of sugars that makes them amazingly delicious. They are “Peaches to Remember!” Look for Durazno’s other tree fruits: apricots, sweet cherries, plums and nectarines.

W e S T- S i D e C O u N T D O W N . freshFAIRLOCAL We are gearing up to open our new West side location in October! You can follow the progress of the new store on our FaceBook page. Sign up for e-news to learn about special events at the new store, and at existing locations.

Vida Verde Farm North Valley, Albuquerque

Seth Matlick, originally from New York City, did his internship at Skarsgard Farms, Get Exotic with and has been farming as Vida Verde for five years. Apart from running the farm, Seth spends his time giving farm tours and talking to local chefs. This year, he Fairy tale Eggplant asked restaurants: What is your surplus vegetable? The answer: zucchini. So he planted cucumber, melons, fairytale eggplant, exotic Delicata winter squash and the Shishito Peppers Big Doris pumpkin instead. Sweet potato is another vegetable that is in short supply. A section of his farm is now devoted to sweet potatoes! Another current favorite of Sweet Potatoes our local chefs, is the shishito chile, a Japanese mild pepper. Delicata Squash The farm currently has relationships with 10-15 restaurants and their chefs, in addition to Co-op locations. Seth is passionate about supplying to local Big Doris Pumpkin restaurants because he likes working with the unique and exciting ingredients that go into creative cooking. You can plan to include these unique culinary items in your own winter menu!

Seco Spice Organics Hatch, New Mexico

Now Roasting LOCAL Organic GREEN CHILE from SECO SPICE in Hatch, New Mexico! Seco Spice has consistently delivered outstanding chile peppers for the past three generations. Their family farm values and traditions continue to be at the forefront of the Chile industry.

.. OctObeR 2013!



September 2013 10 gles. Place as many into hot skillet as will fit without crowding. Bake for about 15 minutes or until lightly brown. Serve hot with butter and jam.

from the


Apple-Zucchini Soup

Archives! Recently, digging through the Co-op archives, a cookbook published in 1993 by La Montanita surfaced. This amazing article of memorabilia offered up amazing pictures of long-time co-op employees, and stimulated a wave of nostalgia throughout the office. But, perhaps most important, was the wealth of really great recipes! Find the entire cookbook on our website, or, sample a few of the amazing fall recipes below. Oatmeal Griddle Scones 1 cup flour 1 cup oatmeal 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon soda 1 teaspoon cream of tartar 1 tablespoon sugar 1/2 stick cold butter, cut into small cubes 1/2 cup buttermilk In a medium bowl, mix dry ingredients until well combined. Cut in cold butter with a butter or pastry knife, until the butter is pea sized or smaller. Fold in buttermilk. Put dough in the fridge for at least 15 minutes to set. While the dough sets, place a medium or large cast iron skillet in the oven and preheat to 425° F. Roll out dough to about 1-inch thickness, and cut into 3-inch trian-

TASTE co-op


Apples and zucchini are both great fall crops grown in New Mexico. Pick your favorite regional bean, and you’re ready for a delicious warm dinner on a cool fall evening. 1 1/2 medium onions, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced 1/4 teaspoon cumin 1 teaspoon curry powder 2 tablespoons olive oil or ghee 2 apples, cored and chopped 1 1/2 pounds zucchini, chopped 1/2 bunch parsley, finely chopped 16 ounces cooked tepary or pinto beans 4 cups water Salt and pepper to taste In a medium stockpot, sauté onions, garlic and spices in olive oil over medium heat until the onions are translucent. Add all additional ingredients and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the apples and zucchini are to your preferred firmness. Season to taste, then garnish with roasted green or red chile, yogurt and more parsley. Green Chile Cheese Quiche Quiche is a simple and versatile dish. A slice provides veggies and protein, and can be enjoyed as easily at a leisurely brunch as in a sack lunch. 3 eggs 1 1/2 cups milk 1/4 cup butter, melted 1/4 cup unbleached flour Pinch of nutmeg 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated 1/2 cup green chile, roasted and chopped 1/3 cup oyster mushrooms, chopped and sautéed Preheat the oven to 350° F. In a mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, butter, flour and nutmeg. In a 9-

Mary Alice Cooper, MD



inch pie plate, layer mushrooms, chile and cheese. Pour egg mixture over the cheese and veggies. If you want a crust, use a pre-made pastry shell to line your baking dish. Bake for about one hour or until the center is firm and the top is browned. Let rest at least 15 minutes before slicing and serving. Butternut Squash Tian 2 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed 1/2 cup flour 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated 1 clove garlic, finely minced 1/3 cup olive oil Salt and pepper to taste Preheat the oven to 400° F. Put flour, a pinch of salt, and squash cubes into a bag and shake to coat. Shake off excess flour, and place cubes onto a buttered 9- by 13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese, garlic and olive oil. Bake for 40 minutes or until squash is soft. Paul’s Roasted Chile Salsa Fall is a great time for peppers of all types, and salsa on everything! 2 large gold bells 2 medium poblanos 2 red or green chiles 2 yellow hots 2 jalepenos 6 cloves garlic 3 Roma tomatoes Salt and pepper to taste Preheat the oven to 400° F. Place garlic and chiles on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and place in the oven to roast. Cooking time will vary for each variety of chile, so begin pulling the smaller chiles out as soon as 15 minutes, and leave the larger ones in up to 25 minutes. Chiles are ready when the skin browns and bubbles away from the flesh of the pepper. While still hot, place all peppers and garlic in a sealable container and close to allow the peppers to steam. Once cool enough to touch, remove the skins, seeds and veins from the peppers, and the skins from the garlic. Put peppers, garlic and tomatoes in a blender or food processor, and puree until the desired salsa texture. Season to taste, and serve hot or cold. Will keep in the refrigerator up to a week. Vegetable Subji 1 cup sweet potatoes, diced 1 cup summer squash, diced 1/2 cup kale or collards, stems removed and leaves chopped 1/2 cup oyster mushrooms 1/2 cup carrots, diced 4 tablespoons olive oil 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds 1/2 teaspoon black or brown mustard seeds 1/2 teaspoon turmeric 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced 2 tablespoons fresh coconut, shredded

O c t .12





AT THE CO-OP DISTRIBUTION CENTER Tour the Foodshed Warehouse Enjoy delicious Co-op Picnic Foods Participate in family fun and Hear State of your Co-op Reports, Meet Board of Directors Candidates!

September 2013 11 1/2 cup water Salt and pepper to taste In boiling water in a medium stockpot, blanch potatoes, squash, collards and carrots for 3 to 5 minutes, then drain off water. Rinse in cold water and set aside. In a large skillet, heat oil on medium heat, then add mustard and cumin seeds and cover. When the seeds pop, add the garlic, ginger, cilantro, coconut, turmeric and a pinch of salt and sauté for about a minute. Add the veggies and sauté for another 2 minutes. Deglaze by adding 1/2 cup water, then simmer until veggies are tender. Serve over your favorite grain. Calabacitas 4 cups summer squash, diced 1 medium onion, diced 1/2 cup green chile, roasted, cleaned and chopped 2 cups sweet corn, cut from the cob 1 large clove garlic, minced 4 tablespoons olive oil 3 tablespoons water 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon fresh oregano, minced 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated In a large skillet on medium heat, add oil. When hot, add squash, onion and garlic. Sauté until the onions are transparent and the squash softens. Add the corn, chile, water and salt. Reduce heat to low and continue to cook until all ingredients are tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, sprinkle with cheese, and serve.

Corn Bread 1 cup corn meal (blue or yellow) 1 cup flour 4 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 egg 1/4 cup corn oil 1 cup buttermilk Place an 8-inch cast iron skillet with one tablespoon cooking oil in the oven and preheat to 425° F. Mix all ingredients until well combined in a medium mixing bowl. Carefully pour batter into the hot skillet, and return to oven. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Healthy food ideas! from

members & staff

agua es vida DROUGHT: it’s not OV ER!

September 2013 12

A BIT OF RAIN DOES NOT A DROUGHT Well, actually our landscape will feel the pain deeper than any. As vegetation diminishes, so do the pollinators (don’t forget that pollinators depend on plants for sustenance just as much as plants depend on the pollinators). Fewer insects mean less polli-

BRETT BAKKER igh! It seems to me I write this column too often! No, not the “Itchy Green Thumb” column itself that you’ve been subjected to for over a decade, but this specific IGT column. The one where I explain that drought is a cumulative event; that a few inches of rain which soak the surface can’t replace reserves of soil moisture that were depleted over years; that it could rain for the proverbial forty days and forty nights and we would still be in a drought situation. And that even though it’s been raining of late (early August as I write), the drought ain’t over. Not by a long shot.



So, you may ask, why am I writing about this again? Because. With the news that New Mexico received record rains in July, all the drought headlines and general concern about our fragile desert ecosystem have all but evaporated, just like the southwest phenomena of rain that evaporates before it hits the ground. The closures of most National Forests and public lands have been rescinded. Except for a few news items like bears wandering into neighborhoods looking for food (an event due to drought and lack of prey/vegetation), there’s little media evidence that the driest period in New Mexico in over one hundred years just happened. The Rio Grande is still at one of its lowest levels in recorded history. Many irrigation ditches are empty. Farms that depend only on rainfall are withered and many farmers and farm service businesses will be facing bankruptcy and foreclosure. New Mexicans won’t starve because— sadly—we eat little food that is actually grown here (and don’t kid yourself, most of the green and red chile served in NM is raised in Mexico, California and Texas). Housing development continues and golf courses keep watering but the farm and ranch sector of the economy will feel the pain deeper than the rest of us.

lessons from the

DESERT BY ARI LEVAUX ecent years have brought spikes in the frequency of strange weather patterns and severe storms, with many blaming the increase on human-caused climate change. If this new normal, as it's being called, is here to stay, it will have profound implications on food production.


There are two basic ways that this threat to food production is being addressed. One is to develop new crops and agricultural methods tailored to withstand increased heat and water stresses. The other approach is to look to the past for solutions, in regions that have historically endured this kind of weather. A new book by agricultural ecologist Gary Paul Nabhan, Growing Food in a Hotter, Drier Land, is a comprehensive exploration of this latter approach. Nabhan lives in the Sonoran desert, along the Mexican border with southern Arizona, and his quest to understand the traditional farming


is a good time for . . .

• Pruning & renovating shrubs




nation. Less pollination means fewer plants. Fewer plants means less food for rabbits, mice and other small mammals. Fewer small mammals means less food for predators like coyotes, bears and already scarce pumas and bobcats. But it doesn’t stop there. When (if!) rains resume and we get back to “normal” (whatever that is) the small mammals will explode because they have new food to eat but it will take a while for predator numbers to increase because most of them reproduce at a slower pace than their prey. Lacking predators, small mammals will then overrun and overeat the sparse recovering vegetation which means there will again be less for them to eat, the population crashes and the prey and predator die off cycle starts all over again.

I can hear what some of you may be thinking: I’m one person, what I do has little effect. Hogwash! Multiply your small step with that of thousands of others. It can and will help.

Crop diversity or polyculture is central to Nabhan's concept of agricultural resiliency. One classic polyculture of the desert southwest, known as the "Three Sisters," consists of corn, squash and beans. It's possible there are other polycultures that could prove valuable as well. "Few seed catalogs explicitly tell us which heirloom varieties have been selected and adapted for inclusion in intercrops or polycultures. We must do our own onfarm description, selection, and evaluation of annual seed crops to determine how we can put the pieces of the puzzle back together into a functioning polyculture," Nabhan writes.

"Compared to the water each of us drinks each day—1 to 1.3 gallons—there is 3,250 times the amount of water embedded in the food we eat," Nabhan writes. For instance, there are 600 gallons of water embedded in a single feedlot-produced hamburger. Since food accounts for such a large share of the water we use, our eating habits have a huge impact on the planet's available water. Consumers can respond to this new normal by learning about the embedded water in the foods they buy, and purchasing accordingly.

It is his reverence for diversity, rather than any distrust of science, that makes Nabhan question the value of a modern agricultural science that seems obsessed with polyculture's polar opposite: monoculture. "We could evaluate adaptations and drought tolerance of 10,000 heirloom, open-pollinated seed varieties for the price of developing and patenting one new GM crop. I'll go with the former; it's a better strategy for climate adaptation than a $10 million investment in a single strain," Nabhan told me by phone.



Reasonable rates. For a FREE estimate, call Corva Rose 203-8968

So what’s the point of this month’s rant? The usual drought solutions like backyard rainwater catchment or (my favorite) ripping up golf courses have no effect on the wild landscape. But as the forest closures are lifted and if you venture into our mountains and deserts (and I’m betting plenty of you do), step lightly. Go easy on firewood resources. It’s not as much fun but if you’re car camping, scrounge up some scrap wood for fires instead of using down and dead wood. That detritus is needed to replenish and hold the soil (especially logs that are on a slope because they collect and hold soil moving downhill during rains). Don’t move or collect large rocks. They also hold soil in place. Watch where you step! Be careful of fragile young plants. And watch where you drive/ride. Wheels (including mountain bikes) do more damage to trails than a pair of shoes.

Nabhan told me. "The agro-ecological techniques I've gleaned from desert farmers around the world are now applicable to two-thirds of the continent."


• Dead-wooding & mulching

Nature is always shifting, finding balance, so this is nothing new, but we’re at the point where not only is small vegetation dying but trees and shrubs as well. Trees and shrubs obviously take longer to grow so their recovery/replacement in the landscape will take longer. In the meantime, soil unprotected by vegetation is subject to mass erosion when the rains finally do come, further destroying habitat for plants and animals. Erosion in the form of arroyos channels rain quickly away from where it falls rather than letting it slowly soak in to replenish soil moisture reserves.

systems of the world's driest places has taken him to the Sahara, Gobi, Taklamakan and other great deserts of the world. His book documents many farmers’primitive and effective techniques for blocking the hot wind, recovering fertile silt from storm runoff, shading dwellings and capturing, storing and delivering rain water.

"In the last few years we've had drought disaster areas as far east as Illinois and Indiana,"

• Re-structuring and trellising wisteria & other vines


The book also contains actionable information for those whose thumbs are no greener than the money they use to buy their food.

Among the most water-thrifty crops, according to Nabhan's book, are beans, peas and cabbage. Melons are nearly as water-wise, despite their succulent flesh. Nabhan tells the story of a Mexican farmer who put three children through college by growing watermelons in the desert of northern Chihuahua. The farmer irrigated his melons with hauled water that he used to fill buried, porous, clay pots called ollas, which slowly release water to the melons' roots. A similar technique is used in the deserts of Central Asia and Northern Africa. Human ingenuity is as universal as the conditions that inspire it. In the face of an unpredictable new normal, this ingenuity could be key to keeping us fed in our hotter, drier future. The examples in this book, beyond the specific information they convey, give reason to believe we can navigate the tricky conditions that appear to be coming our way.

350 to 395 and going up? Earth Web and the Social Justice Committee at Albuquerque’s Unitarian Universalist Church are presenting the movie “Do the Math” on September 18. “Do the Math” was produced by Bill McKibben and 350.0rg. The film looks at the fossil fuel industry, its major corporations, the tar sands/keystone pipeline issue and the effects of non-action to curb our fossil fuel addiction on civilization as we know it. If you have not seen this powerful film, now is your chance. Community dialogue for action follows. There will be the opportunity for anyone interested in seeing the new sanctuary at 5:30pm and the film screening begins at 6:30pm. Follow signs to the social hall at the Unitarian Universalist Church on the southwest corner of Carlisle and Comanche.

september18 @ 6:30PM

For more information contact: Tom Stark at 350-3839. Donations for the screening gratefully accepted to cover costs. All welcome.

farming & gardening

September 2013 13



BY POKI PIOTTIN ast June Gaia Gardens, Santa Fe’s only certified organic urban farm, received a notice of violations from the city’s Department of Land Use. Among the issues cited were: using volunteers in a non-profit operation, hosting farm interns in a trailer, having “too many” visitors, and building violations. Since its inception two years ago, the farm has been selling produce at the Farmers’ Market, offering a CSA, hosting educational gatherings and welcoming small groups of school children during the school year.


Whatever the city’s motive was for coming down so heavily on a tiny farm along the Arroyo Chamisos, whether a response to a neighbor’s complaints about the “scope of the farm” (1/3 acre of beautifully designed garden!), or whether a farm in a residential zoning doesn’t fit in some city official’s plan for a well groomed Santa Fe, the timing of the city couldn’t have been more perfect. A garden, especially in the desert, is very much like a newborn child. It requires constant attention. The success of Gaia Gardens is founded on an entire community loving and caring for the land. Denying the farm the use of this community and these volunteers has been very damaging to a garden that many view as a sanctuary, for people of course, but also for a rich wildlife community, including two pairs of Cooper’s hawks.

System. It is even more difficult to comprehend why a neighbor or city officials would object to a project that could be seen as a model of urban farming, one based on community cooperation, sustainable education, efficient irrigation practices and timeproven agricultural techniques.

a place of

Positive things have already arisen from Gaia Gardens’ predicament and standoff with the city. Many neighbors have sent heart-warming letters of encouragement, all stating that the farm has never created any nuisance, parking or traffic issues. They have unanimously expressed their support for a farm in their neighborhood. People have urged us to carry on, believing that if we give up, no one will ever attempt to start an urban farm within the city limit. Many organizations and individuals have offered their assistance, including a team of talented attorneys. A coalition has formed to tackle many of the issues the farm is facing.


For many of the farm’s volunteers, from a 19-year-old neighbor to a 72-year-old grandmother, Gaia Gardens became a place of refuge. Three mornings a week, volunteers find a second home to come to, to make friends and to nourish on- going relationships. The farm is a place to experience regenerative community in action, while learning from a creative experiment in high desert urban agriculture. It is difficult to comprehend why a city, claiming to be “different” and “sustainable,” would use such aggressive tactics on a project that has not only received much praise from the press but has also been the recipient of two awards delivered by the Mayor: an award for Best Recycler; and another award for Best Food


We believe that hope resides in a community and neighborhood with the freedom to gather, co-create and educate itself and its children on the all-important topics of food production, herbal medicine and regenerative practices. Changing any government controlled by business interests is a daunting task. We must rebuild our culture from where we live— in our backyards and our neighborhoods. We must hold city officials to their oath to serve us, encourage them to learn from our successful grassroots experiments and insist that our city make sustainable education its highest priority. If our city officials truly wish, as we do, to live in a city that could be an enlightened model for the rest of the country, this must take place. Santa Fe is still a small town populated by many brilliant minds, creative spirits and well-intentioned citizens of many ethnic origins. We live in relative peace compared to many troubled places in the world where obtaining food is a daily struggle and keeping one’s children safe from rape or war is a daily mission. We remain precariously fortunate to have all the opportunities we have, and must reassert our sovereignty and rebuild our culture from the most fundamental foundations—the individual, the family, the neighborhood and the Earth.

at the Santa Fe Sustainable Plan ( DocumentCenter/Home/View/702), approved by the Santa Fe City Council in 2008. If you like what you read, and wish to make Santa Fe the city that it could be, then get involved, help elect a visionary mayor and city councilors next year, and creatively contribute to making this city the thriving and sustainable place you wish to live in.

POKI PIOTTIN is the founder with co-visionary partner, Dominique Pozo, and a large community of friends, of Gaia Gardens, a non-profit urban farm in Santa Fe, fiscally-sponsored by the New Mexico Community Foundation. For more information, visit Poki may be reached at or 505-796-6006.



SWAN GARDENS BY LEAH VIENS GORDON, NOB HILL ASSISTANT PRODUCE TEAM LEADER t was January and Rena Swan craved Italian food. She tried the local grocery store in Edgewood three times before finally finding what she was looking for: fresh basil. “It was the worst looking basil I had ever seen,” Rena conjures up from her memory. “That was a seed planted in our brains, and shortly after that, hydroponics became our path.” One year later, with business license and building permit in hand, self-proclaimed mad scientist, Rena, along with her daughter Rachel, germinated their first precious basil seeds in fuzzy, floating Rockwool beds.


plants utilize a narrow part of the light spectrum which the Swans are able to control using high-tech LED lights. She says they don't use white, orange, yellow and red, which put off heat, so energy consumption remains low. With their conservation efforts, and cleanliness of their operation, the Swans truly hope to be certified as organic growers, but they remain ahead of the curve, in a way, as there is no certification yet designated for hydroponics. Although natural, the pure mineral solutions fed to the plants are a processed product, and therefore cannot be certified. From twice daily Ph readings to thorough accounting, the Swans keep meticulous records. Rena states that,“It's created a lot of extra work along the way, but we're proud of what we've done. We'd gladly talk anyone's ear off if they're looking to venture out to the countryside.” This season, Swan's Garden is only producing basil,

but this driven duo are looking to take on a partner and expand their selection. They will continue to grow herbs that don't ship well, plugging themselves into the local food system and intentionally rejecting America's costly food shipping industry. Rena likes to be able to eat fresh basil in the winter and considers their system to be a gentle use of technology. She wants her basil to be “healthful, promoting people's health,” just as she raised her own daughter to recognize the importance of food and what we take into our bodies. “I taught Rachel not to even ask for a cereal if sugar was one of the first three ingredients.” The Swans sing praise to La Montanita having been “invaluable in market research and encouragement for our business.” As diligent businesswomen, their plans to expand can only yield great benefits for our bellies.

Hydroponics is a year round, soilless growing method in which plants absorb nutrients dissolved in the water supply. Their roots grow in this mineral solution or on an inert medium, in this case, a sponge-like medium of spun rock called Rockwool. In a well insulated growing room behind their home, the Swans cultivate enough sweet Genovese basil to supply two of La Montanita's stores as well as other groceries around Albuquerque. “The only wall we've come up against is not being able to grow as much as we'd like,” Rachel confesses. On a three-acre plot studded with native pinon trees, the Swans are kept company by their 13-year-old Basenji, a horse, a donkey and an extended family of squirrels. Despite the scenic landscape, the Swans determined that turning their clay soil into a workable garden was beyond their ability and opted for a clean, soilless growing approach. The poor condition of their soil wasn't the only factor that swayed them toward hydroponics. The Swans view their project as an opportunity to cast their vote for local, environmental stewardship. Hydroponic's low water usage is a great benefit, especially for New Mexico, amounting to about 10% of traditional farming use. Rachel boasts that the only water loss is what the plants absorb and when their system gets cleaned every six weeks. Without soil to till, they avoid erosion problems and in turn, conserve soil. After many late night Google-ing sessions, Rachel discovered that

Premium Compost • Our locally made Premium Compost is approved for use on Certified Organic Farms and Gardens.

Topsoil Blend • Ready for planting in raised beds or flower pots!

Mulch • A variety of decorative and functional mulches.

Foodwaste Recycling • Albuquerque’s only restaurant foodwaste recycling pick up service

Greenwaste Recycling • Bring your Yardwaste to us and keep it out of the Dump!

9008 Bates Rd. SE Open Tues. through Sat. 8am to 4pm Please come down and see us •



Rehearsals begin Sept. 9 at 6:30pm for the fall season Albuquerque Center for Spiritual Living 2801 Louisiana Blvd., NE Albuquerque



September 2013 14





As reported by Allison Koplicki in the New York Times on July 27, “Americans overwhelmingly support labeling foods that have been genetically modified or engineered.” This is according to a New York Times poll conducted this year, with “93 percent of respondents saying that foods containing such ingredients should be identified.”

AT THE SUPREME COURT! Center for Food Safety Goes Head to Head with Monsanto


he Center for Food Safety (CFS) went head to head against agrochemical giant Monsanto in late July in the first-ever case involving genetically engineered crops to be heard by the Supreme Court. CFS lawyers are representing several farmers and environmental groups. The case, which has major implications under the National Environmental Policy Act, centers on Monsanto’s Roundup Ready alfalfa seed—genetically engineered to tolerate increased application of Monsanto's Roundup (glyphosate) herbicide. CFS filed the suit after the USDA illegally deregulated alfalfa, without first completing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). A federal judge agreed that the potential for cross contamination with organic (non-GE) farmers’ alfalfa posed a grave risk of “irreparable damage” and placed a ban on all planting and sale of GE alfalfa until the Department of Agriculture completed the EIS. The decision was upheld twice after appeals by Monsanto, who claims that their product poses “no risk of harm whatsoever”—despite a 2009 study showing that GE crops have increased the use of pesticides by 383 million pounds over the last 13 years, despite their role in the creation of pesticide-resistant “superweeds,” and despite the fact that alfalfa stands a particularly high likelihood of GM contamination because it is an open-pollinated crop that can be cross-pollinated by bees with fields several miles away. Alfalfa is the third most valuable and fourth most widely grown crop in the US, but Japan and


The New York Times poll results show: • Three-quarters of Americans expressed concern about genetically modified organisms in their food, most were worried about the health effects. • 37 percent of those said they feared that such foods cause cancer or allergies. • Among those with concerns, 26 percent said these foods are not safe to eat, or are toxic, while 13 percent were worried about environmental problems. • Nearly half of Americans said they were aware that a large amount of the processed or packaged foods they now buy at the grocery store contains genetically modified ingredients.



South Korea, the largest customers of America’s $480 billion in alfalfa exports market, have threatened to discontinue US alfalfa imports if the GE variety is approved. According to CFS, seven separate amicus briefs have been filed in support of CFS by organic food companies, legal scholars, former government officials, scientists and environmental groups, including one by the Attorneys General of California, Oregon and Massachusetts, noting the "'immense' ramifications for all environmental protection should Monsanto prevail." The court's decision will have far reaching implications for both GE REGULATION as well as other cases under the National Environmental Policy Act.

The phone poll was conducted in January 2012, and had 1,052 respondents. It also showed that concern was higher among women who are most often the principle grocery shopper in the family. About half of the respondents said they would not eat genetically modified vegetables, fruits and grains, but three quarters of respondents said they would not eat GMO fish, and twothirds said they would not eat GMO meat. For the WHOLE STORY go to

Natalie MAINES




BENEFIT CONCERT for the SANTA FE WATERSHED ASSOCIATION You won’t want to miss this fantastic evening with the always provocative, multi-platinum, Grammy-Award winning Natalie Maines, who is launching her solo career with a few special shows at special places….and the Santa Fe Opera is JUST the place! This is the 3rd Annual Benefit Concert for the Santa Fe Watershed Association. Tickets can be purchased on-line at: or by calling the Santa Fe Opera 505-986-5900.



September 2013 15



BY CHUCK SCHULTZ “Every week 330 farmers leave their land for good.” -Farm Aid

the LAST



he documentary film The Last Crop tells the story of a family farm caught in the middle as urban growth threatens California’s fertile Central Valley. Jeff and Annie Main, like many farming families, confront an uncertain future as development impinges on rural areas and their children choose careers off the farm. It is a story that is echoed on farms across our nation. What sets the Mains apart is their resolve to create an alternative for their farm’s succession that ensures its future—even at the risk of disinheriting their children. The film captures the intractable nature of sustaining a small local farm and the stakes we all have in making certain they can survive and thrive. The Last Crop is an intimate exploration into who grows what we eat. What does it take to be a farmer? At the heart of our story is one family’s attempt to address the critical issues facing farmers today: the affordability of farmland, the fragile balance of farm succession, and ultimately, the preservation of small organic farms. The Last Crop merges cinema-verite, first person diaries of life on the farm and on-camera interviews to create an intimate snapshot of the Mains’ personal life, intercut with their 35-year history and contribution to the local food movement. As they fight to save their farm’s future, the everyday chores and challenges of a small family farm are beautifully captured utilizing only naturalistic light sources, inspired by the earthy textures and colorful tones of the world of California’s

Central Valley. Readings from weekly newsletters from the farm provide the opportunity to create cinematic sequences filled with reflection, emotion and values, giving the Mains a distinct vehicle to express themselves as farmers, activists and parents. We experience the many changes that affect their family: their three children’s career choices; the death of Jeff’s father juxtaposed with the marriage of their son Zach, celebrated on the farm. We journey with the Mains on their first trip together in 26 years—Jeff’s first trip to New York City—to visit their daughter Alison at Pratt Institute, where she is studying graphic design. We sit in on community

meetings where farmers and neighbors debate the laws and customs that will determine the fate of their farms. We learn that the Mains, true to their pioneering spirit, have no plans to sell their farm to the highest bidder. Rather they are determined to create an alternative conservation model that will not only save their land but will become a model for small farms to flourish. The Last Crop is a story of one family’s struggle to ensure their farm remains affordable and productive. On a national scale, the Mains’ story challenges conservation groups, their local communities and some 500,000 aging US farmers to rethink what actions they are willing to undertake to transfer their land to a new generation of family farmers. “When the Sacramento and Davis Food Co-ops said we want to take this up because this is what our members want, it was just a giant sigh of relief that they could get behind saving local farms and take it beyond us.” -Jeff Main, Good Humus Produce See the trailer at or for more information or to make a donation contact Chuck at BluePrint Productions, or go to or call 212-563-4504. La Montanita Co-op is pleased to have made a donation so this important film can reach audiences. Our donation was matched by The Twin Pines Cooperative Development Foundation.



F I R E S TAT I O N BY DELANY COVELLI, NEW ENERGY ECONOMY early 200 people from Santa Fe County came together Wednesday, July 31, to celebrate the first solar county fire station. The Tesuque Fire Department now operates 100% off of solar. This will allow the volunteer firefighters and EMTs to redirect money previously allocated for utility bill payment towards safety equipment to protect firefighters on the front lines of mega wildfires.


The community solar installation was possible thanks to funds from New Energy Economy and Santa Fe County. New Energy Economy, a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to creating economic opportunity in New Mexico with less carbon pollution, raised its contribution from the gracious support of La Montanita Co-op, and many locally owned restaurants. La Montanita allowed youth interns from New Energy

Fall Foodshed Abundance



Economy to table outside the Co-op on many occasions. The youth interns not only had the opportunity to educate the general public around the effects of climate disruption and the solutions but also collected donations. Individual community members donated quarters, dollar bills and checks. These added up!

Jambo Café, Tune Up Café, Tesuque Village Market, Andiamo, Haagen Dazs, and Café FINA.

Santa Fe County voted unanimously on a Resolution to partner with New Energy Economy to install solar panels that will provide electricity for the Tesuque fire station and help reduce reliance on dirty coal-fired electricity. Leading by example, the Santa Fe County Commissioners are setting a new energy standard for Santa Fe County. By installing 6.12 kW of solar on the Tesuque fire station, they are making prudent budget decisions for the Santa Fe community.

“Solar power systems mitigate climate disruption, save us money and reduce our collective dependence of fossil fuels, which leads to protection of air quality and conservation of water,” said Mariel Nanasi, Executive Director of New Energy Economy. “Solar is a hedge against rising electricity rates, and the very kind of investment responsive government must be undertaking.”

New Energy Economy would not have been able to make the Tesuque Fire Department solar installation a reality without the support of the La Montanita Co-op and other local restaurants that donated handsomely as well: Raaga Restaurant, Backroad Pizza,

Solar on the Tesuque Fire Department will eliminate an estimated 84,000 pounds of carbon emissions annually, reduce thousands of gallons of water usage, and will be cost effective.

By exposing the vision of what’s possible, we are hoping that this will lead to the solarization of all government buildings in Santa Fe. If you’d like to get involved please check out our web site at and be a part of the solution. Santa Fe has the potential to be a clean energy leader—let’s actualize that potential.


EXPERANZA bike shop!

BY CHUCK MALAGODI, CITY OF ALBUQUERQUE oes your bike have a flat? In need of repair? On March 8, 2013, the City of Albuquerque opened its first community bicycle shop. With over 4,000 square feet of space, the former Esperanza library became the home for the Esperanza Community Bicycle Shop. The new facility also houses the Richard Rivas Community Bike Recycle Program.


The new shop provides classes on safe cycling in traffic, Bike Mechanic classes, Earn-a-Bike programs, work study for high school youth and a home for people wishing to donate used bicycles and related parts and equipment.

Esperanza is open to the general public on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 68pm and from noon to 7pm on Sundays. Everyone is welcome to visit the shop and to work on personal bikes with assistance from staff and volunteers. Patrons may bring their own parts, purchase parts from a bike shop, or used parts for their project may be available at the shop (depending on availability). For more information about the Esperanza Community Bicycle Shop, call 505-224-6668. To sign up for a Commuter Essential Class or a Bike Mechanic Class go to www. You can also visit the shop’s website at: ation/bike/esperanza-community-bike-shop.

Your community-owned natural foods grocery store

Why Join? • You Care! -about good food and how it is produced

• You're Empowered! -to help support the local/regional food-shed

• You Support! -Co-op principles & values & community ownership

• You Vote! -with your dollars for a strong local economy

• You Participate! -providing d1rection and energy to the Co-op

• You Receive! -member discounts, weekly specials &a patronage refund

• You Own It!

-an economic alternative for a sustainable future

In so mony woys it poys to be o lo Montoiiito Co-op Member/Owner

• Pick up our monthly newsletter full of information on food,

health, environment and your Co-op. • Member refund program: at the end of each fiscal year, if earnings are sufficient, refunds are returned to members based on purchases. • Weekly member-only coupon specials as featured in our weekly sales flyer. Pick it up every week at any location to save more than your annual membership fee each week. • Banking membership at the New Mexico Educators Federal Credit Union. • Member only discount days: take advantage of our special discount events throughout the year-for members only. • Special Orders: order large quantities of hard-to-find items at a 10% discount for members. • General membership meetings, Board positions and voting. Co-ops are democratic organizations. Your participation is encouraged.

Co-op Connection News September, 2013  

The La Montañita Co-op Connection tells stories of our local foodshed--from recipes to science to politics to community events. Membership i...

Co-op Connection News September, 2013  

The La Montañita Co-op Connection tells stories of our local foodshed--from recipes to science to politics to community events. Membership i...