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n celebration of Veterans Day weekend, the Veteran Farmer Project is pleased to present a FREE screening of a new film, Ground Operations, From Battlefields to Farmfields that champions the growing number of veterans who are reclaiming their lives with new careers in organic agriculture. Farming and ranching offer a place to de-escalate from war, restore our soils, revitalize our communities and create access to affordable, healthy food for families across America. Like the stories of our New Mexican heroes, Ground Operations focuses on the the life experiences of veterans who have started growing food. One of the heroes producer/director Dulanie Ellis highlights is Adam Burke, who made a promise to God. Bleeding out from a mortar hit in Iraq, Adam promised God that if he could live to see his family one more time, he would do something to make his life worth saving. Two years later he started the Veterans Farm, a place of emotional solace and job training in organic blueberry production for disabled vets like himself.”

Here in New Mexico over the past two years, in conjunction with the VA’s Behavioral Health Recreation Therapy Dept. and the VA Office of Patient Centered Care, the New Mexico Department of Agriculture, Holistic Management International and the Downtown Action Team, the Co-op’s Veteran Farmer Project has provided both classroom education and hands on training in farming, gardening and land restoration through sustainable animal husbandry practices. Touching the lives of dozens of local veterans, the VFP is pleased to be able to show this extraordinary film that places our local Project’s activities in the context of a national movement to help heal and re-integrate returning veterans, reinvigorate the farming community and provide access to healthy locally produced food. Producer/director Dulanie Ellis has worked in film and television for 15 years and, as part of Tell the Truth Pictures, she helped produce, Mighty Times, The Legacy of Rosa Parks that was nominated for an Academy Award. A consuming desire to protect farmland in her region prompted her to launch Walk Your Talk Productions that married her filmmaking and activism and prepared her to make Ground Operations.

Gone ELECTRONIC! MARSHALL KOVITZ, BOARD NOMINATIONS AND ELECTIONS COMMITTEE t is time to express your right of democratic participation in this year’s Board of Directors election. We at La Montanita are excited to once again bring you the election electronically instead of mailing out paper ballots. We have been working really hard to make this go as smoothly and easily as possible for our members. Besides being easy, this method saves money, time, energy and trees!


• There are five candidates running to fill the three, 3year term positions open this election. • Please read the candidates’ statements to learn about them. (See pages 4 and 5) • There are two proposed bylaw amendments. Page 4 has brief summaries and explanations as well as information about where to find the detailed wording. • Vote! The election will be open from November 1 through November 14. • Primary household members who have submitted emails to us will receive a link, username and password to enter the Votenet website. • Review the candidates’ statements. The statements on the Votenet website are the same as on page 4 and 5 of this newsletter. • Review the information about the proposed bylaw amendments. Votenet website has the same information as page 5 of this newsletter. • Vote for up to three candidates. • Indicate your votes regarding the bylaw amendments.


Ground Operations has won both viewer acclaim and garnered a series of awards at film festivals around the nation. On November 10, at 6PM at the Kimo Theater in Albuquerque, don’t miss your opportunity to celebrate Veterans Day weekend with local Veteran Farmers and view this amazing film. Admission is FREE but donations to support Veteran Farmer Project activities will be gratefully accepted. Light refreshments and engaging dialogue with VFP participants after the screening. This event is co-sponsored by the City of Albuquerque, Family and Community Services, Downtown Action Team, VA’s Behavioral Health Recreation Therapy Dept., VA Office of Patient Centered Care and La Montanita Co-op. FOR MORE INFORMATION or to RSVP, contact Robin at, call her 505-217-2027, go to, or connect with the Veteran Farmer Project on Facebook. See the trailer at www.

Co-op Board Election: BY


• You will receive a confirmation page you can print to ensure your vote was submitted. If your household’s primary member has already provided her/his email address to the Co-op, then on November 1, you should have received an email from with your username and password. If you did not, primary household members can go to the information desk with their license and membership number to receive the information. If you need technical support, please call 217-2016. If electronic voting is not for you, we will download and print your ballot at any store and provide you with a postage-paid envelope for mailing. Primary household members may go to the information desk to request a ballot between November 1 and November 14. Mail in ballots must be postmarked no later than November 14.


MEETING & HARVEST PICNIC THANKS! This year’s gathering was an opportunity to see the Co-op Distribution Center, experience the MoGro (mobile grocery store), hear from our Board of Directors and meet the candidates for this month’s Board elections. It was great fun making our Co-op community collage art project; and a special thanks goes out to Board Member Lisa Banwarth-Kuhn for spearheading this fun activity and the parents from Mountain Mahogany for helping with it. Thanks to Alaska for hooping with us as well. Very special thanks goes out to our amazing Deli staff for the delicious food, to Bob Tero and Gabe for smoking delicious South Valley local pork for us all to enjoy and to Michelle Franklin, both for making space during a very busy warehouse morning for us to have our meeting and a great warehouse tour. And finally to MoGro’s Thomas and MoGro staff for showing the MoGro. It is a great pleasure to serve you, our fantastic community; you make everything the Co-op does possible. -ROBIN SEYDEL

Look for candidate statements and information about the proposed bylaw amendments on pages 4-5 of this newsletter.

Co-op Holiday Foods: Scrumptious Sampling Day:

WESTSIDE welcome!!!

Thanks again to our Westside community members for their STRONG SUPPORT of the new Westside store!

The Co-op is your one-stop shop for the most delicious fresh, fair and local Thanksgiving foods available. From local and organic turkeys to vegetarian alternatives and scrumptious side dishes; from fresh baked pies to all the ingredients you need to bake your own, the Co-op has what you need. And peruse our produce and grocery departments for side dish specialties.


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




Nov. 16!

Need some ideas and inspiration? Come to your favorite Co-op and taste the difference fresh, fair and local foods make during our fun and friendly Holiday Foods Scrumptious Sampling Days.

SAVOR THE SEASON’S FLAVORS at your favorite Co-op location! Sample traditional and gourmet local Thanksgiving dishes, organic fresh turkeys, vegetarian specialties, home baked healthy pies and so much more. Get great ideas on what to cook or let us make your holiday feasting easy— sample a wide variety of dishes, and then make your Thanksgiving dinner stress free by ordering them from your neighborhood Co-op Deli (See menu on page 6). Scrumptious Thanksgiving Food Tastings at all Co-op locations on Saturday, November 16, from 1-4PM.


on Sat., Nov. 16!



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 Westside/ 7am-10pm M-Sun. 3601 Old Airport Ave. Abq., NM 87114 503-2550 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 • Mark Lane/Westside 503-2550 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


CONNECTION NOV. 14 6:30-8:30pm, Embassy Suites, Albuquerque FREE of CHARGE and OPEN to the PUBLIC! Are you an established farmer or rancher possibly looking for an extra hand, willing to share your knowledge as a mentor for the next generation, or a sustainable agriculture and land stewardship advocate, working in the non-profit, private or government sector and interested in connecting young people to opportunities? If so please join as a “prospective mentor or employer” at this year’s Career Connections, held in conjunction with the annual Quivira Coalition Conference. Quivira recognizes the urgent need to connect experienced land owners/managers and conservation leaders with the next generation of people who will be responsible for growing our food and stewarding our planet.

November 2013 2


zations, government agencies, land use service consultants (i.e. Holistic Management), and related private-sector businesses. This year, the New Agrarian Program is working with the National Young Farmers’ Coalition to help ensure a strong showing of highly-qualified, enthusiastic beginning farmers, ranchers and land advocates in search of mentorship and opportunity. Prospective employers/mentors will each be assigned a table, where they can place business cards and other relevant information, and meet with interested new agrarians. New agrarians are encouraged to come prepared with resumes and contact information. Career Connections takes place on the second evening of the Quivira Coalition’s annual conference November 14. You DO NOT need to be registered for the conference to participate in Career Connections. Career Connections is offered free of charge, and is open to all. If you are interested in attending the Quivira Conference, please visit to register.

This gathering of ranchers, farmers, conservation leaders and new agrarians is an informal evening of open mingling, with prospective employers/mentors clearly identified so that the new agrarians can easily find them. Prospective employers/mentors will include (but are not limited to) private ranches and farms, conservation groups, food advocacy organi-

BOARD ELECTIONS: November 1-November 14






FINDING MEANING IN YOUR JOB I BEA BOCCALANDRO magine two stonecutters. Stonecutter one moves sluggishly and is counting the minutes till he can go home. Stonecutter two also loves going home, but for now is blissfully lost in his work. He is whistling an upbeat tune, doing great work and feeling good. BY

you know exactly what I’m talking about. Your volunteering likely is very much like a job. That is, it involves tasks that could be considered “work” —stuffing envelopes, grooming dogs or pounding nails. But it doesn’t feel like work, does it? Here is why: you are stuffing envelopes that will raise money to cure cancer, you are grooming neglected animals that need care, and you are pounding nails to give a disabled veteran a home to live in. Millennia of evolutionary biology has hardwired us to become engrossed, feel good and do better work when we are making a meaningful contribution to others. This sounds like liberal hogwash, but it’s actually biology. Researchers have physiologically detected the “helper’s high.” If we are building a home for a disabled veteran, our brains are awash in a pleasant cocktail of chemicals very similar to the cocktail that having sex produces. There are several books that make this point, for example, Give and Take by Adam Grant or Age of Empathy by Frans de Waal.

Of the two workers, who are you? If you identify with the sluggish stonecutter, dreading going to work and wanting to do as little as possible when there, read on.

Membership information is available at all four Co-op locations, or call 217-2027 or 877-775-2667 email: website:

IT’S NOT YOU In all likelihood it’s not your fault that you feel uninspired by work. It’s a systemic weakness of our corporate workplaces. Modern management theory tells us that difference between the first worker and the second is engagement. Employee engagement is the degree to which we are willing to do more than our jobs require.

Membership response to the newsletter is appreciated. Address typed, double-spaced copy to the Managing Editor,

Research conducted on nearly 11,000 individuals from North America, India, Europe, Southeast Asia, Australia, New Zealand and China by Gallup and others found that about seven out of ten employees are disengaged.

Copyright ©2013 La Montanita Co-op Supermarket Reprints by prior permission. The Co-op Connection is printed on 65% post-consumer recycled

BOARD ELECTIONS SEE PAGE 4-5 Keep cooperative economic democracy strong!

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


GET ENGAGED Making your work meaningful seems like a tall order, but it’s not as hard as it seems. You see, the mistake that corporate America has made is having created jobs that are devoid of a meaningful purpose. All you need to do is tweak your job so that it furthers something you believe in. If you volunteer,

CHANGE YOUR JOB Specifically, I suggest folding into your job an element that makes what you do, day in and day out, more meaningful. If you do marketing, consider doing cause-marketing, where you promote a social cause as part of your efforts to sell a commercial product. For example FedEx’s drivers rid the environment of invasive species. Interested FedEx drivers in Florida have been trained to spot and identify invasive snake species that cause extensive damage to the state’s sensitive wilderness. When the driver spots a Burmese Python or other non-native snake, she uses her GPS to notify the local authorities or a nonprofit organization to remove it from the environment. DOES THIS REALLY WORK? Will adding a social-good element to your job solve all your workplace problems? Of course not. Your supervisor might still be insensitive. You might still be underpaid. Still, going into a job that is more inherently meaningfully to you will make you happier no matter what else is going on. Bea Boccalandro is president of VeraWorks, that helps companies design, execute and measure their community involvement, teaches corporate community involvement for Georgetown University and at the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship and she is a frequent keynote speaker on business involvement in societal issues. Come hear Bea speak on November 8 as part of the SANTA FE CARBON ECONOMY SERIES. For more information and to register got to

feeding the ’hood

November 2013 3



Which brings us to FSMA. This law, passed in 2011, is the first major revision to food safety standards since 1938, and is very important because our food systems are radically different than they were 75 years ago. Further, the recent prevalence of food borne illness means we need to rethink how to make sure food that reaches consumers is safe to eat. FSMA gives the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authority to require food producers and distributors to demonstrate Good Manufacturing Practices, which for the CDC means how they handle food, clean their supplies and facilities, and transport the food. This law also gives the


protect producers

The rules, as they are currently written, are designed for very large scale distributors who can absorb the sorts of costs related to better record keeping, paying inspectors, and new infrastructure. And, most food borne illness originates in the large national or multinational food supply chains. Unfortunately, the rules have been written in such a way that they apply across the board. For regional hubs like the CDC the rules will have a disproportionate burden when food hubs take steps to follow them. The CDC and local, regional farmers need you to write to the FDA with your two cents on making the rules more fair for farms and distributors of all sizes. You can get more information at the National Sustainable Agriculture website: /fsma, on the National Young Farmers Coalition website: www.

Businesses like the CO-OP HELP INDIVIDUAL FARMERS AND FOOD ARTISANS get the supplies they need and get their PRODUCTS TO MARKET.


ALBUQUERQUE BY DAVID WHITELY buela Garcia’s belly gets empty because she’s trying to feed and provide for herself and three grandchildren on a limited Social Security check. The money only goes so far with rent, utilities, food and all the other expenses. Her daughter can’t help because she’s a drug addict, and the dads aren’t around. Mrs. Garcia gets a food box from the Rio Grande Food Project once a month. She knows how to maximize the groceries we provide. But there are days she doesn’t eat so her grandkids can.


John and his family have empty bellies. He’s a proud papa with four kids. His wife works part time cleaning people’s houses. He’s a talented carpenter with experience building homes, but has been unemployed since the housing market collapsed. He gets day labor jobs occasionally. He always asks, “Know anyone who is hiring?” John is embarrassed to have to be using our food pantry. But he’s going to provide for his family no matter what. Sally and her two girls’ bellies get empty, especially at the end of the month. She’s a single mom who works as a caregiver helping elderly people live with dignity in their homes. She’s employed full time, but only makes $9 an hour with no benefits. Her annual salary isn’t enough with two growing kids, rent, utilities, gas for her car, and medications. Sally provides for her daughters by receiving our monthly food box with a week’s worth of groceries.

Mexicans this year. We are a “lean, clean feeding machine” that is volunteer-driven, with four part-time staff and 50+ weekly volunteers. We are located on the Westside and serve the entire metro area. We strive to provide each household a week’s worth of food once a month. Food boxes include produce, dairy, bread, canned veggies, fruit, meat, pasta, beans and rice. A perfect storm of hunger approaches because of government spending cuts to food stamps and commodity (free) food. This means fewer food relief resources will be available. As a consequence we expect a significant increase in people with empty bellies seeking our help starting in November and continuing into next year. We need your support now more than ever. You can help by making a donation online at www., volunteering at our food pantry, collecting food, raising funds, or connecting us to other food distributors and food sources. We know New Mexicans rise to the occasion when presented with a challenge. We hope you will help us weather the hunger storm that’s coming by helping to fill Albuquerque’s empty bellies. For more information or to make an extra donation to fill empty bellies this holiday season please visit: TO VOLUNTEER CONTACT: Rocio Gonzales, or 505967-5158. TO DONATE FOOD CONTACT: Don Isaksen, or 505-967-8384. OTHER INQUIRIES CONTACT: David Whiteley, or 505-934-55677.

The Rio Grande Food Project, Albuquerque’s second largest food pantry, has been filling empty bellies like these for 24 years. We are feeding 800 people every week and will serve 40,000 hungry New


DONATE the dime!

it ALL adds up



DONATION organization


of the month:

This month your Donate the Dime organization is The Rio Grande Food Project: filling empty bellies in Albuquerque. In September your Donate the Dime Bag Credits, totaling $2,093.60, went to Santa Fe Youth Works. THANKS to all who donated!

WESTSIDE 3601 Old Airport Ave. NW 505-503-2550

Alamed a Blvd. Coors Blvd.

As a food hub, the CDC has a huge responsibility to make sure food is kept at appropriate temperatures in clean spaces so that when it reaches your dinner plate you know it’s safe to eat. While food you buy at the grocery store has many stops before it reaches your table, when it comes from a local producer through a food hub, the number of stops and the opportunities for contamination are fewer than for food that travels longer distances, through more hands, by way of bigger distribution networks.

In theory, FSMA is a good thing—no one will argue that food free of pathogens like salmonella and E. coli is important to public health. How this happens, and who is responsible for this is up for debate. In reality, FSMA creates a number of requirements that potentially overburden local or regional LOCAL farmers and food distributors with extensive record keeping, costly inspections, and expensive infrastructure revision, all of which require additional labor and capital investment that could seriously compromise the capacity of burgeoning food hubs like the CDC.



FDA authority to withdraw permission for facilities to operate if they think a facility is a threat to public health.

Old A irport Ave.

BY SARAH WENTZEL-FISHER his month in the Co-op Distribution Center Column (CDC) we’ll examine how the Food Safety Modernization Act or FSMA will impact emerging regional food hubs like the CDC. First, a short definition of food hub: A regional food hub is a business or organization that actively manages the aggregation, distribution, and marketing of source-identified food products primarily from local and regional producers to strengthen their ability to satisfy wholesale, retail and institutional demand. In other words, businesses like the Co-op help individual farmers and food artisans get the supplies they need and get their products to market.

Old Airport Ave. Co-op Values Cooperatives are based on the values of self-help, self-responsibility, 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 Co-op 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.

your vote

November 2013 4



IMPORTANT INFORMATION About This Year’s Balloting B Y- L AW A M E N D M E N T S A N D B O A R D E L E C T I O N S We encourage all members to participate in this year’s Board of Directors election. This year we have five candidates for three open seats. Each open seat is for a three-year term. We are also asking members to vote on two proposed bylaw amendments. This is the second year we are using an electronic voting procedure, both to make voting easier for our members and to save paper. All members who have given us their email address will receive an email with their login and password to Votenet. Members can also come to any information desk to receive their login and password to vote electronically or our staff will be happy to provide members with a paper ballot and a postage-paid envelope to cast their vote. Once again, we will not mail out paper ballots. Please see the detailed information on the electronic voting on the front page.


Information All Candidates answered the following questions and provided a personal statement. Their answers and photos follow. 1. Describe your involvement with La Montanita Co-op. Include amount of time spent and specific activities, if appropriate. 2. Describe any volunteer or paid experience relevant to serving as a Co-op board member. 3. What do you see as La Montanita’s role in the broader community? 4. Candidate personal statement. Board candidates had the option of interviewing for the Board Slate. Below is the information that was provided to each candidate regarding this process. At the end of each candidate’s statement, there are two statements from the Board, indicating whether the candidate chose to participate in the optional process and whether the Board endorsed her/him. Optional Process For Candidates Wishing To Be Considered For The Board’s Slate Important Note: While this process is optional, wording on the ballot will show whether or not you chose to participate. As the Co-op has grown into a large, complex organization, it has become increasingly important to find qualified board candidates and actively promote their candidacy. Additionally, the Board regularly receives informal feedback from members indicating they would like more guidance in voting for candidates. To these ends, the Board is instituting a process of screening and evaluating candidates who wish to participate, and then selecting all those candidates the board feels are adequately qualified. In all cases, the first step is for you to fill out the candidate forms on the previous pages and submit them to the Co-op. After the Co-op has determined that your candidate forms are complete and valid, you will be contacted by a member of the Nominations and Elections Committee and invited to interview in person or by phone with the Committee to discuss your candidacy. We ask that you sign your acknowledgement of the Code of Conduct agreement. At the interview the Committee will ask you a series of questions and also give you time to discuss those aspects of your candidacy that you think are significant. The Committee may also ask follow up questions to your responses. All of your responses will be kept confidential by the Committee and full Board.

After the Board has decided on its selection, it will notify all candidates of the selections. Candidates will have through October 15th, to notify the Board if they no longer want to run for election. Your candidacy will remain confidential until you decide whether you wish to continue to run.




Describe your involvement with La Montanita Co-op. Include amount of time spent and specific activities, if appropriate. I have been a member of La Montanita Co-op since 2011. Before that, I shopped frequently at the Co-op ever since moving to Albuquerque in 2007. Over the years, I have also actively participated in many Co-op events and gatherings, such as volunteering for the Beyond Pesticides conference and tabling at the annual Earth Day festival.

Describe your involvement with La Montanita Co-op. Include amount of time spent and specific activities, if appropriate. I am an incumbent seeking re-election to the Board for another three-year term. I find serving on the board a profound and rewarding experience. To participate in guiding the Co-op into the future and witnessing its steady growth and expansion has been exciting, as well.

Describe any volunteer or paid experience relevant to serving as a co-op board member. I am currently working as a Southwest Regional Field Organizing Fellow with the Real Food Challenge, a national campaign that leverages the power of college students and campus dining halls to create a

Describe any volunteer or paid experience relevant to serving as a co-op board member. My work as the Production Manager of a weekly newspaper complements my board work. The managers at the paper need to study and vision the future of periodicals in a


Ballots will show the responses of all candidates to the obligatory questions, found on page 5 of this packet. Following your responses, the ballot will state whether or not you participated in this optional process and whether or not the board selected you. Candidates will be listed alphabetically on the ballot. The following are the questions the Committee will ask you, if you choose to participate: For New Candidates: 1. What is your understanding of what the Board does? 2. Can you commit to a three-year term of service? 3. Do you have any known or potential conflicts of interest in serving as a La Montañita Board member? 4. Why do you want to serve on the La Montañita Board? 5. How do your personal values and choices reflect the values of La Montañita? 6. Describe where you would like to see the Co-op in the short and long-term. 7. Consider an experience you have had working in a collaborative setting (on a board, oversight committee, or other group). a. What was your role? b. What was the most challenging issue that you faced? c. What was your greatest success? 8. Please describe any other skills or experiences that directly contribute to the BOD that we may not have asked you about. 9. What is your experience with computers and communicating electronically? For Incumbent Candidates: 1. Why do you want to serve on the La Montañita Board of Directors again? 2. Can you commit to another three-year term of service? 3. After having spent some time on the Board, describe where you would like to see the Co-op in the short and long-term. 4. What have you helped to accomplished during your term on the Board? 5. What would you like to accomplish should you serve another term? 6. What do you think you could have done differently over the course of your current term? You may vote for up to 3 candidates.

After interviewing candidates, the Committee will nominate a slate for Board approval. It’s the Board’s intention to select all those candidates whom it considers adequately qualified. Thus, the board may select all, some, or none of the candidates.





Je ff healthy, fair, ecological and sustainable food system. In recent years, I have worked on biodynamic, organic and community farms in Albuquerque, Taos and Espanola. While pursuing my graduate-level degree in K-12 teaching, I served as the 2011-2012 student senate president at Northern New Mexico College, interned with Food and Water Watch New Mexico, and carried out research and planning to launch a studentrun farm-to-plate café with the Sostengal Center for Sustainable Food, Agriculture and Environment. In 2013, the journalistic New Mexico-focused blog that I produce won the Sustainable Santa Fe award for green journalism. In addition, I have worked as national media coordinator for the Cooperative Food Empowerment Directive – a group that trains and empowers college students to establish student-run food co-ops – and helped lead their first successful national fundraising drive. What do you see as La Montanita’s role in the broader community? I see La Montanita’s primary role in the broader community as demonstrating the economic viability and competitive advantages of the cooperative model while simultaneously achieving the realization of social and ecological benefits that make our world healthier, happier and more harmonious. In particular, I believe La Montanita plays a tremendously important role by increasing the regional accessibility and affordability of local and sustainable food, while also supporting the growers and other workers throughout the food chain who deliver this food to the consumer. I also recognize the Co-op’s critical role in educating consumers about the complex realities of our food system, the values that underline cooperative business, and the positive collective impacts we can accomplish by making more conscious and holistic choices in our interactions throughout the foodshed. Personal statement, including anything you feel is relevant to your candidacy. Since coming to New Mexico nearly a decade ago, I have been engaged in many different ways – from the farm to the café to the classroom – as a young person seeking to be nourished by, to cultivate and to expand the vitality of our local and sustainable food culture. Along the way, I have gained a wealth of knowledge, skills and insights that I hope to put into service on the Co-op Board of Directors. Perhaps unique among all of the applicants, I bring with me a special emphasis on educating, inspiring and empowering young people to take on their own roles as active citizens in food democracy. How do we nurture the next generation of sustainable farmers, culinary artists, food system entrepreneurs, and real food eaters who must continue developing and planting the seeds of tomorrow’s Co-op? Elect me and let’s work on it! Candidate participated in optional slate interview process? Yes. Candidate selected by the Board for inclusion in the slate? Yes.


ARE TRUE ECONOMIC DEMOCRACY KEEP cooperative economic democracy STRONG!



constantly changing environment and economy. We meet frequently to lift our heads and look at the big picture, improve our departments, plan the budget and examine our relationship to the community we serve. In addition, I have belonged to members-only storefront co-ops filling positions such as stocker, cashier, cleaner, produce buyer, you name it; working my monthly hours. I have managed a for-profit grocery store and been a professional cook. Though the BOD does not involve itself directly with day-to-day operations, knowing what the “little picture” entails certainly helps give scale to the big one. What do you see as La Montanita’s role in the broader community? Aside from its obvious role of being a premier provider of organic and local foods, La Montanita’s other major role is its demonstration of the efficacy of the cooperative business model in meeting the economic and social needs of the community on many different levels. The gravity of the simple fact that our stores are owned by the people who shop in them should not be lost on any of us. I am reminded of the effects of this fact every time I shop. The current economic situation would seem to favor the formation of more and different kinds of cooperatives. By the time of the election the Co-op will have it’s sixth location open on the west side. Management and board constantly promote cooperation as a business model and lend expertise to newly forming coops and work hard to educate the public at-large. The Co-op’s many programs give volunteer/members a direct hand in enlarging community capacity and demonstrating how cooperative principals benefit all of us. Personal statement, including anything you feel is relevant to your candidacy. Though the Board monitors the operations of the Coop to fulfill it’s fiduciary responsibility to owners, it’s the Board’s real work of studying and peering into the long-term future of the Coop that I enjoy the most. The fact is that our Ends policies, which are born from that studying and peering and are constantly being refined, have allowed for our co-op’s expansion, the Community Capacity volunteer program, the CDC and MoGro. They nourish the business of the Coop and the community at-large. “Where to next?” is the question that makes me want to keep serving. Candidate participated in optional slate interview process? Yes. Candidate selected by the Board for inclusion in the slate? Yes.

LEAHROCO ROCO LEAH Describe your involvement with La Montanita Coop. Include amount of time spent and specific activities, if appropriate. My involvement with La Montanita Co-op began when I was a little girl, accompanying my mother to the Nob Hill store, where my family are still members today. I can remember my first, electrifying sip of reverse osmosis water from that machine.

Continued on page 5

your voice

November 2013 5





Jessica Continued from page 4 Now, I am honored to hold the position of Produce ADTL at the Nob Hill store. Forty plus hours per week, I interact with coworkers, members and vendors gaining insight into the community's concerns. Conversations range from people's curiosity about new, local produce, to understanding what it means to make ethical purchases at the grocery store, to heated discussions on the impact of relevant food laws. I also write about our local vendors for the monthly newspaper. Outside of my work schedule, I spend several hours each month visiting farmers and learning about their farms. I photograph and write about the significant details that makes their work unique and beautiful. Describe any volunteer or paid experience relevant to serving as a co-op board member. My career in food began on a picturesque, fifty-acre organic vegetable farm in the Hudson Valley of New York. I already had years of NYC fine dining experience and restaurant review writing under my belt, but I still took fresh food for granted until I was planting it, watering it and digging it out of the ground sun up to sun down. After the growing season ended, I drove cross country visiting, photographing and working at organic farms. The agrarians I met were preserving and teaching the craft of a hands on lifestyle, and because of them I began to understand the importance of stewardship and community, two values I hold in high regard. My experience crossed borders when my husband and I moved to Asia. For two years, I consulted for nonprofit and community based organizations in Burma and Thailand. I worked to secure funding and develop sustainable agriculture projects in active conflict zones and refugee camps for villagers affected by civil war. It was an important transition when I realized I was not only a teacher, but a student. I learned to sacrifice selfish pursuits for the community's greater good. What do you see as La Montanita’s role in the broader community? As a long established community pillar, La Montanita plays a major role in growing the local food system. By opening channels for its members and the community to support farmers and businesses within our foodshed region, La Montanita is fostering a sustainable local economy. This model is an educational platform for the greater community, and because of the trusting and mutually beneficial relationships that have been built, the Co-op's model and values are esteemed locally and nationally. Personal statement, including anything you feel is relevant to your candidacy. Wherever I am in the world, working to promote a sustainable community while practicing environmental stewardship is the essence of my life's pursuits. I genuinely enjoy collaborating to understand the needs of a community and working to transform those needs into a useful solution. Candidate participated in optional slate interview process? Yes. Candidate selected by the Board for inclusion in the slate? Yes.

JESSICA ROWLAND ROWLAND JESSICA Describe your involvement with La Montañita Coop. Include amount of time spent and specific activities, if appropriate. As a relative newcomer to Albuquerque, I have been a La Montañita Co-op member for just a few years, a Co-op Advisory Board member since January 2013, and a full Board member as of July 2013. I enthusiastically support the coop’s trifold mission of educating about the cooperative model and sustainable living, strengthening the local economy and building a strong community, and supporting local agriculture. Much of my connection to the Co-op has been through my work as a lecturer and education coordinator in the UNM Sustainability Studies Program. Since 2009, I have had numerous opportunities to connect our students with the La Montañita community, both in the classroom and out. Guest speakers from the Co-op often visit our classes to teach about local foodshed development. Many of our students become Co-op members, and a few are

now store employees. Through the generosity of Coop hosts, our students have toured the Co-op Distribution Center Warehouse and the Veteran Farmers’ Project to gain firsthand knowledge of our local food system. I’m passionate about facilitating community connections: to that end, our program collaborates with the Co-op to host special programming (for example, the Beyond Pesticides 31st Annual Meeting in April and Brad Lancaster’s Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands event in June). Describe any volunteer or paid experience relevant to serving as a co-op board member. As a Co-op Board member I have worked on the Member Engagement and Board Development committees, and have completed the Cooperative Board Leadership training. I bring a fresh voice to the table, and experience working as an advocate and facilitator in the local food community. As an educator, I’ve enjoyed learning the nuances of an effective system of governance. I’ve especially appreciated being involved in an engaged community that delves into complex issues of sustainability and equity and takes steps to create a better future. What do you see as La Montanita's role in the broader community? I see La Montañita as a key player in strengthening New Mexico’s food value chain. The Co-op is not simply a great place to purchase local and organic food; it is a significant resource for community development, economic growth and sustainable agriculture education. The Coop is working to build food-based infrastructure and distribution systems throughout the region, growing farmers and producers, and educating consumers about a more sustainable future. On a broader level, the Co-op leads by example with its viable business model and community-driven mission. Cooperatives, in general, embody an equitable and sustainable way of doing business in which we all can participate. Personal statement, including anything you feel is relevant to your candidacy. Considering the success that La Montanita has had with putting vision into practice, I see it as a distinct privilege and honor to serve as a Board member. I am excited for the opportunity to participate in co-op governance and become a more knowledgeable practitioner in the Co-op community. I look forward to continuing to foster strategic, diverse partnerships between the Co-op and the local community that will facilitate lasting, sustainable change. Thank you for your support!

This year, the Board is requesting that the membership approve two amendments to the Co-op’s bylaws. The changes are detailed, complex and lengthy. Below are summaries and justifications for the proposed amendments. You can find the exact wording for the amendments on the Co-op’s website, here: elections/2013-proposed-bylaw-changes. This same document is available in paper form at the information desk at all stores. You can find the current bylaws on the Co-op’s website here: www.lamon s.pdf. Paper copies of the current bylaws are available at the information desk at all stores.

and a retained portion which is held by the Co-op and listed on each member’s account. The dividend is proportionate to the member’s business with the Coop and is non-taxable for the member as long as the purchases were for ordinary household use. Acknowledging the importance of member economic participation in co-ops, the IRS treats the entire dividend—20% cash as well as 80% retained—as non-taxable to the Co-op. La Montanita has utilized this system for many years and the 80% retained has been essential to our growth and our ability to do good work. This is how patronage dividends have been handled in the past and nothing in the proposed amendment changes this.

Proposed Bylaw Amendment #1 Lifetime Memberships The proposed amendment deals with how requests for refunds of lifetime membership are handled and how much will be refunded. Lifetime memberships are optional one-time payments of $200. Currently, anyone requesting a refund is entitled to the full amount, subject to the approval of the Board of Directors. The proposed amendment would allow the Co-op to deduct $15/year for every year the lifetime membership was in effect; the balance would then be refunded. This deduction would only apply to lifetime memberships purchased after November 19, 2013, the day that this amendment would take effect. Lifetime memberships purchased before that time would be eligible for a full refund. The other change is that the General Manager, in consultation with the Board President, would have the authority to decide whether or not to allow the refund.

We do propose a name change, substituting the term, “Patronage Dividend,” for the existing, “Patronage Refund.” The dividend term more accurately reflects the ownership aspect of the transaction. Operationally, nothing will change.

The Board feels that the $15/year deduction is fairer to the Co-op because a lifetime member will have received a year’s worth of benefits such as discount shopping days and the patronage dividend while the Co-op will have borne the corresponding costs. When the Co-op first offered the lifetime memberships, promotional materials stipulated that the $200 was fully refundable. We wish to honor that promise to anyone who has bought a lifetime membership under that assumption. The $15/year deduction will be noted on any materials created after the proposed amendment is accepted. Since the Board delegates to the General Manager decisions about the appropriate level of capitalization, the Board feels that the GM is the best person to decide about refunds, in consultation with the Board president. To date, the Co-op has about 520 lifetime members and since the program started in the late 1990s we have had about 11 requests for refunds. Proposed Bylaw Amendment #2 Capitalization As determined by the Board, patronage dividends are distributed to members at the end of sufficiently profitable years. The dividend consists of a cash portion, which must be at least 20% of the total dividend



Candidate participated in optional slate interview process? Yes. Candidate selected by the Board for inclusion in the slate? Yes.

Personal statement, including anything you feel is relevant to your candidacy. I aim to represent two groups of people. The first group consists of people who want to feed themselves and their families well but on a limited budget. I will explore ways to combat the generally held perception that the Co-op is too expensive, including by setting policies that would reduce prices or offer a wider range of differently priced options for whole beans, grains, fruits and vegetables. Some ideas include working with farmers to help harvest and transport A-grade vegetables before they turn into B-grade ones, and offering B-grade vegetables for sale at a fraction of the A-grade price. I will introduce a proposal for a policy to make sure that

Section 9.4 clarifies the terms under which Member Investment Certificates shall be issued. The Co-op has never issued any Certificates and has no plans to do so, since it now has sufficient access to capital through other means. However, should the Board ever choose to issue Member Investment Certificates, the amended process is more consistent with how we handle other member contributions. The Board of Directors recommends voting yes on both proposed amendments. If you have questions or comments, please contact Marshall Kovitz, Nominations and Elections Committee and Bylaws Amendments Committee. 256-1241 or marshall@






Describe your involvement with La Montañita Coop. Include amount of time spent and specific activities, if appropriate. I am a member/shopper.

What do you see as La Montanita's role in the broader community? Serving the community by selling either wholesome nutritious foods or better quality alternatives to less wholesome foods in a way that protects workers, growers and the natural and business ecosystems around us.

A significant change is the acknowledgement that the 80% retained will most likely continue to be held by the Co-op. This point is emphasized in the amended section, 9.3.5 and in new section 9.6. The Co-op has never returned the retained portion and given its importance to the Co-op, the Board has no plans to do so. However, the Board does retain the ability to refund this money and the process it would use is described in Sections 9.5.1 through 9.5.3. As previously mentioned, these proposed bylaw changes will not affect our current process for distributing the cash portion of the patronage dividend. You will continue to receive your patronage dividend checks after profitable years.



Describe any volunteer or paid experience relevant to serving as a co-op board member. I don't have any directly related experience.

Another change is to formally note that the record of each member’s retained dividend will be shown on the member’s cash refund check stub, satisfying our requirement to provide a Patronage Dividend Retain Certificate.

B ALLOT AT A N Y I N F O D E S K Harry weekly member specials include a fruit, two vegetables, a legume and a whole grain. Through these policy proposals and others like them, I hope to increase vastly the appeal of shopping at the Co-op for members and non-members alike and make the Co-op much more popular than any of its close competitors. The Co-op shouldn't aim to supply only the nutritional and grocery needs of a limited subset of the population, but everyone who wants to eat and live ethically and well. The second group of people consists of people who want to shop ethically and want their food to be relatively free from harmful substances but who are having a hard time with the complexity of doing this. For example, it recently came to my attention that organic foods can be sprayed with "organic pesticides." Does this mean that these are in fact worse for you than conventionally grown foods that haven't been

sprayed with pesticides at all? If your eggs are free range, how big is the range and how often are the chickens allowed to wander in the range? These are just some of the issues that worry me and the kinds of issues that I hope to clarify for members so that they don't have to think so much before buying something. Some ideas I have for simplifying the process of shopping include clear and extended labeling next to every product so that there is a simple method of comparison, and manager/buyer recommendations where the Co-op has reason to believe that some product has better quality, ethics or taste. If elected, I will use all of my persuasive skills to help advance these two goals on the board in the next three years. In addition, I will work to improve the coop privacy policies, and try to get the crosswalk restored at Carlisle and Silver, which many shoppers in Nob Hill need to get to the Coop safely. Candidate participated in optional slate interview process? Yes. Candidate selected by the Board for inclusion in the slate? Yes.


co-op news


CO-OP HAS A TURKEY for every taste! Your

Come to your favorite CO-OP LOCATION and choose the TURKEY that best fits your palette and your pocketbook!

EMBUDO Valley Organics: Again this year the Co-op is pleased to be able to offer the famous Embudo Valley Organics Turkeys. Embudo Valley Organics owners David Rigsby and Johnny McMullen and their staff hand raise and hand care for every one of their birds. These locally raised birds have free access to acres of pastureland and live their whole lives outside doing what healthy happy birds do. When they are grain fed they eat the certified organic barley, wheat, rye and oats grown right on the farm. To supplement their feed when necessary they are fed certified organic corn and soy mixed with certified organic molasses and high omega-flax seed. Embudo Valley also sells their certified organic poultry feed through our Co-op Distribution Center’s Food-Shed Project to many of our local egg producers. The Embudo Valley Farm pledges that all “our turkeys are family farmed, raised using humane and environmentally responsible methods to provide you with the freshest, safest and most flavorful meats available.” Their birds are plump and happy, not de-beaked, declawed or disfigured in any way and are harvested in the most humane way possible.



Scrumptious Thanksgiving Food Tastings at

ALL Co-op locations on Sat., November 16 from 1-4pm! SAMPLE traditional and gourmet local Thanksgiving dishes, organic fresh turkeys, vegetarian specialties, home baked healthy pies and so much more. Get great ideas on what to cook or let us make your holiday feasting easy—sample a wide variety of dishes, and then order them from your Co-op Deli (See menu on this page).

LOCAL ORGANIC ALL NATURAL ference Mary's offers. Mary's Free-Range birds begin life on a farm in California’s Central Valley. The Pitman family has built its reputation by growing fewer, but superior, Free-Range turkeys year after year. MARY’S CERTIFIED ORGANIC TURKEY Mary's Free-Range Organic Turkeys are never caged, eat only certified organic feed and are raised in the most humane farming practices for healthful eating. Certified Organic feeds must be Certified by the USDA and everything that goes in them must be certified as well. Mary's Organic Turkey feed does not contain any of the following: • NO Animal By-Products • NO Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) • NO Antibiotics • NO Pesticide Treated Grains • NO Grains Grown with Chemical Fertilizers • NO Synthetic Amino Acids

If you haven’t yet tried an Embudo Valley turkey, make this the year you treat yourself to the best. Not only will you keep local New Mexican family farmers on the land and farming, but you’ll get to eat what will no doubt be the most delicious holiday turkey you have ever eaten. These turkeys come fresh directly from the farm to our Co-ops and are not frozen. Look for them in the meat cases at all Co-op locations, no need to special order. For more information contact Grace in Santa Fe at 984-2852, Dave at Nob Hill at 265-4631, Elena in the Valley at 242-8800, Michael in Gallup at 863-5383 or Oz at the Westside at 503-2550.

at your Co-op!

November 2013 6

MARY’S TURKEYS: Choose from Certified Organic or All Natural Since 1954, the Pitman Family has raised turkeys for the Thanksgiving holiday. Today, with more and more companies introducing "free range" products, we want every consumer to experience the dif-

ALL OF MARY’S FREE RANGE TURKEYS ARE: Free-range, vegetarian fed, gluten free, are NEVER given antibiotics or hormones, or animal by-products. Mary’s Free Range turkeys are raised on healthful grains and allowed to roam in areas four times the size of the average commercial turkey ranch. Their high protein diet provides the optimum amount of nutrients for healthful growth. These all natural turkeys provide great quality at an excellent price point for La Montanita shoppers. Come to your favorite Co-op location and choose the turkey that best fits your palette and your pocketbook. Look for local organic fresh EMBUDO TURKEYS, or MARY’S ORGANIC or FREE RANGE in the meat cases at all Co-op locations. They will be arriving on November 18.

FROM THE CO-OP DELI FEASTING MADE No Muss, No Fuss: Just Great Holiday Food Made Easy by Our Expert Deli Chefs. Holiday Dinner Specials Let our prepared-food chefs create or complement a holiday meal just for you. We’re offering a special selection of entrees, side dishes and desserts.

Entrees A pound serves 2 people min. order: 1 lb • All-Natural Sliced Turkey Breast • Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas



$11.99/lb $9.99/lb

Side Dishes


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

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

Desserts Pies and Dessert Breads serve 6-8 min. order: 1 • Maple Pecan Pie • Pumpkin Pie • Vegan Pumpkin Pie • Cranberry Walnut Bread Loaf • Banana Nut Bread Loaf • Vegan Cranberry Walnut Bread Loaf • Bread Pudding

Let us make your holiday deliciously



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

$13.99 $12.99 $12.99 $9.99 $9.99 $9.99 $7.99

ORDER IN PERSON OR BY PHONE AT THESE CO-OP LOCATIONS NOB HILL 3500 Central SE, ABQ 265-4631 VALLEY 2400 Rio Grande Blvd. NW, ABQ 242-8880 SANTA FE 913 West Alameda, Santa Fe 984-2852 WESTSIDE 3601 Old Airport Ave., ABQ 503-2550

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

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

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

co-op news THE INSIDE

November 2013 7


Opening the new location on the Westside has been a long road and a lot of work, but the opportunity to serve all the wonderful people who have been so excited to welcome the Co-op to the Westside has made it all meaningful. Even while we worked on all the tasks that it takes to build out a store from an empty shell, neighbors kept stopping by when they saw us to welcome us to the community. We are most grateful for all the support and the warm reception and look forward to serving our new neighborhood with all the benefits a co-op brings to the community. I especially want to thank all the many hard working people I have had the pleasure of working with to make it happen, including our contractor, Hart Construction, and his excellent team and our consultants from the National Cooperative Grocers’ Association Development Corporation. I also want to thank Bob Tero, our operations manager, Mark Lane, the Westside store manager, Joseph Phy, the

assistant store manager, Edite Cates and her marketing and design team and all our dedicated new staff for their good work getting everything done in a timely fashion. We are most pleased to be adding nearly 50 new employees, many of whom live on the Westside, to the Co-op staff. If you have not already checked out the Westside location, we hope you will do so. My thanks and appreciation to all the above and anyone I might have forgotten to mention and a very special thanks to you, our members, who make everything we do possible. We look forward to serving the new Westside community and all our other neighborhoods during this upcoming holiday season. As always, please let me know if I can be of service, my email is terryb@lamon, or give me a call at 217-2020. -TERRY B.

november Calendar

of Events Nov. 1-14 ANNUAL BOARD OF DIRECTORS ELECTIONS, see page 4-5 11/10 Veteran Farmer Project FILM SCREENING, see page 1 11/16 Scrumptious Thanksgiving SAMPLING DAY at all locations 1-4pm 11/19 BOD Meeting, Immanuel Church, 5:30pm

Nov. 28 Co-op stores CLOSED, HAPPY HOLIDAY

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.


PECULIAR FARMS FEEDING the neighborhood! BY LEAH ROCCO, NOB HILL PRODUCE DEPARTMENT armer Thomas Dollhite is a good neighbor who loves to open his farm to everyone he meets. He welcomes people into his home and feeds them freshly picked veggies. Some may consider an open invitation to a farm to be unconventional these days, especially considering the recent exposure of unethical practices amongst industrial farms. But Thomas and his business partner, Adam, love having an approachable farm. In direct response to their community's feedback, they are experimental, flexible and accommodating. They consistently work through several community based initiatives as well as directly with consumers to sell their produce, meat and eggs.


Peculiar Farms thrives on the 100-acre plot in Los Lunas where Thomas' great-great-great-grandfather settled in 1820. This year 20,000 vegetable plants are growing on nine acres of land. There are orchards and honey bees, and the majority of the land is low-water-use pasture for raising cattle, pigs and laying hens. That's enough land and animals to keep Thomas, Adam and Josh, the three farm hands, from getting their beauty sleep. The gents do maximize their job load by implementing a "full circle system." They grow clover between rows of veggies, with flowers that feed honey bees while cutting down on weeds and which is frequently harvested to feed the livestock. Within this agricultural continuum, replenishing the land is just as important as what is reaped from it. While they have created a self-sustaining atmosphere, the farmers still rely heavily on their community to help them determine their next steps. As members of the Sweet Grass Co-op (beef products carried at La Montanita), their cattle are rigorously tested by ultrasound scanning to ensure tender, evenly marbleized meat. “Good marbleization” reveals the meat's fat and cholesterol quality, a direct result of the cow's diet and lifestyle. To continue improving the quality of their meat, the Peculiar farmers are currently cross breeding Black Angus cattle with Brown Swiss.


COOKING on a Budget! NEW TWIST ON HOLIDAY FAVORITES! Many people want to include more organic and local foods in their meals, but feel it’s not within their budget. Let Local Organic Meals on a Budget show you how to shop for and prepare delicious local, seasonal meals —for less! Enjoy a demonstration on how to prepare simple, fast and easy meals, and share strategies on how to save money. Packed with tips and easy to follow recipes, these classes educate and inspire the chef within you! Classes are a wonderful collaboration between the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market Institute, Kitchen Angels, Home Grown New Mexico and this year the Santa Fe School of Cooking, 125 North Guadalupe Street, Santa Fe, where all classes are held. As they can

They hypothesize that the rich milk produced by the Browns will have a great effect on the classic beef characteristics of the Blacks. So far the calves have a calm and friendly disposition, if you consider their sloppy, wet licks the act of affection, that is. If you're hungry for more than a steak, you can buy a whole or half animal directly from the farmers through their website: Peculiar's blueish-green, nutrientrich Araucana eggs fly off the shelves at La Montanita's Nob Hill and Rio Grande locations. One women's buyer group, in Albuquerque, has struck a deal by gathering the dirty eggs from the farm just to be sure they can get their hands on some. Thomas explains that these ladies, representing about twenty-five families, are very committed to local growers, organic food and healthy families. La Montanita's Co-op Distribution Center (CDC) is another strong supporter of Peculiar Farms. The CDC is a sister operation to the Co-op’s retail stores. Thomas looked to the CDC when he realized that he'd grown 3,000 eggplants, and the goods were quickly divvied up and distributed on CDC trucks to our stores and throughout the region. Keep your eye out for an abundance of their local sweet potatoes this month. Perhaps Thomas' most optimistic ambition for the greater Albuquerque community is that people will be "so inspired by the flavors of our food that they plant a couple of plants in their backyard." Until our home gardens are established, Thomas and the coworkers warmly welcome inquisitive consumers to tour their farm where they can enjoy green eggs, ham, veggies and grass-fed beef. Look for Peculiar Farms products in the produce, dairy and meat departments at all Co-op locations.

accommodate only 55 people for each class, please get your registrations in early. COOKING HOLIDAY FAVORITES On November 20 come to: A New Twist on Holiday Favorites, Turkey Day Timesavers, Tips & Treats, with Andrew Cooper, Executive Chef, Terra, Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado. The class fee of only $22 includes tastings, recipes and a raffle. A big supporter of farmers’ markets and local foods, Chef Andrew incorporates seasonal offerings in his menus and culinary creations. In this class he'll be showing us some great twists on dishes for the holidays, including boned-out turkey, fast and easy cranberry sauce, plus all the holiday fixins! If you are a WIC or EBT client, class is free: please call Mae at Kitchen Angels to reserve your space at 505-471-7780. All others please register at



La Montanita


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

Come visit our new location on the Westside of Albuquerque 3601 Old Airport Ave, NW

Joe Phy Assistant Store Leader

Mark Lane Store Leader

Ashley Torres Produce Team Leader

Katherine Talavera HBA Team Leader

Willy Cookson Bulk/Bakery Team Leader

Robert McLaughlin Deli Team Leader

Cory Minefee Front End Team Leader

Ozz Snoddy Meat & Cheese Team Leader

Claudia Nardi Diary/Frozen Team Leader

Let us Do the Cooking this season!

FIND ALL THE MENU DETAILS ON PAGE 6 Our Co-op staff makes it easy for you to enjoy a worry-free holiday gathering. Pre orders will be accepted up to three days before the holiday.

Holiday Dinner Package • Holiday Plate • Vegan / Vegetarian Plate • Entrées • Side Dishes • Desserts!

Call Frank/ Nob Hill, 505-265-4631 • Robin/ Valley, 505-242-8800 • Robert/ Westside, 505-503-2550 • Jeff/ Santa Fe, 505-984-2852

For those do-it-yourself folks cooking at home

h o l i d a y m e a t s O R v e g a n C HOI C ES VEGAN! Field Roast Hazelnut Cranberry Roast En Croute

Made exclusively for the holidays – a rich, hazelnut-infused vegetarian grain meat stuffed with Field Roast sausages, crystallized ginger,cranberries and apples – wrapped in a savory puff pastry. Hazelnut Cranberry Roast En Croute is a centerpiece for any festive holiday meal.

LOCAL Embudo Turkeys

Located in Rinconada, New Mexico Local certified organic turkeys that are fed certified organic corn, soy barley, wheat, rye and oats, mixed with high omega-3 flax see, much of which is grown right on the farm. Embudo turkeys are family farmed on seven acres of pasture lands providing the freshest and most flavorful meat available.

Mary’s Certified Organic Free-Range Turkeys & Mary’s All Natural Free Range Turkeys These turkeys are allowed to roam in areas four times the size of the average commercial turkey ranch. Their high protein diet provides the optimum amount of nutrients for the turkey to grow into a bigger and more flavorful turkey than one typically found in the supermarket.

Kyzer New Mexico Pork

LOCAL from New Mexico - Slow, natural growth produces solid, quality meat. On the farm from birth to market, raised in an old world style, Kyzer animals are grain-fed, supplemented with local vegetables and, occasionally, whey. Try their sausage links in this year’s stuffing!

Local Grass Fed Lamb

From CO & NM - Lamb raised on a free-range and fresh grass, native grazing environment resulting in meat that is tender and flavorful.

Sweet Grass Co-op Beef

Sweet Grass Cooperative grows and markets regional grass-fed, grassfinished and pasture raised beef products of exceptional quality and value. Ask our meat department for your favorite cut.

Santa Fe Seasons Red Chile Cranberry Sauce

Cervantes Green Chile Sauces & Salsas

No artificial colors in this sweet and spicy treat! Use as a glaze on chicken, pork, fish or serve with cream cheese and crackers for an easy appetizer. Now at your favorite Co-op store.

A hearty blend of guaranteed New Mexico grown chiles, tomatoes, and spices. This award-winning culinary sauce offers an appetizing and healthful ingredient to any poultry, meat or vegetable dish.

Members! Don’t Forget! Your Bounce Back Volume Discount is good until friday, November 15th!

Looking for the Perfect Gift? CO|OP Gift Cards, fill them out for any amount

From bath salts to barley, from flowers to figs, there are so many choices. Over 1400 local products from which to choose. Ask your cashier!



Mary Alice Cooper, MD

November 2013 10



PLANNING! Timing is the greatest challenge in preparing a holiday meal. Most holiday meals involve a number of dishes, and several courses, so making a game plan will help ensure you don’t find yourself overloaded when it comes time to put dinner on the table. The following recipes include directions for how to prepare, but also suggestions on when to prepare, if they are part of a large meal. The recipes follow in a recommended order of preparation rather than order of consumption. Day 1 Snacks Prepare a plate of dried fruit, nuts and strong cheeses. This is great insurance if you’re running behind in food preparation, or if you’re getting hungry while you cook. Having several snacks around will whet appetites, but won’t leave your family and guests full before the main event. Prepare this the day before and set in the fridge so it’s ready to go when you need it. Stuffing Makes enough to stuff one medium turkey or four medium acorn squash. Consider baking this stuffing in acorn squash and leaving the cavity of your turkey hollow. This will speed up cooking time, and you can put them all in the oven at the same time. Prepare stuffing a day ahead of time to reduce the chaos in the kitchen when you make your turkey or squash. Try this stuffing without all the bread.

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted 1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped 2 medium shallots, finely chopped 4 celery stalks, finely chopped 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, minced 2 cups wild rice, cooked 2/3 cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped 1/4 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped salt and pepper to taste Heat the butter in a large frying pan over medium heat. When it foams, add the onion, shallots and celery, season with salt and pepper, and stir to coat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until just softened, about 6 minutes. Stir in the thyme and cook until just fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the rice, pecans, cranberries and salt and pepper. Let cool, place in a sealed container, and keep in the fridge until you’re ready to stuff squash or turkey. Bean and Corn Soup Soups generally taste better the second day, so prepare this Wednesday afternoon before Thanksgiving, so all you’ll need to do the day of is reheat and add croutons. Serves 6. Croutons One loaf crusty sourdough bread, cut into 1-inch cubes 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter Salt and pepper to taste Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add bread and pepper and stir to coat. Sauté until croutons are golden and crisp on all sides, stirring occasionally, about 12 minutes. Sprinkle with salt. (Can be made a day ahead. Cool completely; store airtight at room temperature.) Soup 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter 2 cups chopped leeks (white and pale green parts only; about 3 medium) 1/4 cup minced shallots 3 garlic cloves, chopped 6 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano 1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch pieces 8 cups low-salt chicken broth 1 1/2 cups frozen baby lima beans (about 8oz.) 1 14 3/4-ounce can creamed corn 1 1/2 cups frozen white corn kernels (about 8oz.)



Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add leeks, shallots and garlic; sauté until leeks are soft, about 5 minutes. Add 4 tablespoons parsley, thyme and oregano; sauté until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Mix in red bell pepper. Add broth and lima beans and bring soup to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until lima beans are tender, about 10 minutes. Add creamed corn and corn kernels and heat through. Remove soup from heat; season to taste with salt. Ladle soup into bowls. Top each with croutons and some of remaining 2 tablespoons parsley. Day 2 Classic Pumpkin Pie The perfect time to make pies is first thing in the morning. They will be cool by dessert time, but you won’t need to refrigerate them before you serve them. Crust One pre-baked pie crust

November 2013 11 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth 3 sprigs rosemary Heat oven to 425° F. Pat the turkey dry with paper towels. Place the wings underneath the body. Place the rosemary and parsley in the cavity. If you like a tidylooking bird, tie the drumsticks together using the kitchen string. Place the carrots, celery and onions in a metal roasting pan. Transfer the turkey to a wire rack and place it on top of the vegetables. Drizzle the skin with the oil and, using your fingers, spread it on evenly. Season with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Roast the turkey uncovered until browned, 30 to 45 minutes. Add the broth to the pan. Cover the turkey loosely with foil. Reduce oven temperature to 350° F. Roast until a thermometer inserted in a thigh registers 165° F, about 2 hours. Let the turkey rest for at least 30 minutes before carving. Reserve the pan drippings and vegetables for the gravy. Stuffed Squash

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease a shallow pie pan. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into a 14-inch circle. Fold into quarters, and unfold in the prepared pie pan. Poke all over with the tines of a fork. Line shell with tin foil, and add pie weights, beans or rice to hold it down. Bake for 7 minutes, remove weights and foil, and bake for 7 minutes more, or until the crust is set and hasn’t browned in the least. Remove from oven and set aside while you make the filling. Filling 1 1/4 cup pumpkin or squash puree 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted 2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon sea salt 3 eggs, separated 1/2 cup sugar 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 3/4 cup buttermilk Preheat oven to 350° F. In a large bowl, combine the puree, butter, lemon juice, ground ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon and sea salt. Beat with a whisk until wellcombined and fluffy. In a small bowl, combine the egg yolks and the sugar, whisk together for a minute or so, and set aside. Pour the egg yolk mixture into the puree mixture, and beat with a whisk until smooth and light. Slowly fold in the flour, and then the buttermilk. Meanwhile, with clean, dry beaters, whisk the reserved egg whites to soft peaks, and fold into the filling. Spoon filling into the prepared shell, and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. I look for the very center to be set, so that it is not jiggling, but isn’t yet solid. Cool for 2 to 3 hours, slice, and serve. Baked Bird Perhaps the hardest part of making a turkey is simply being patient while it cooks. Use the time while the bird bakes to clean the kitchen, set the table and put on your clothes. Serves 6 to 8. 1 12- to 14-pound turkey, giblets removed 1/2 bunch flat-leaf parsley Kitchen string (optional) 4 small carrots, cut into quarters lengthwise 2 stalks celery, cut into 3-inch-long strips 2 medium yellow onions, cut into wedges 6 tablespoons olive oil Salt and pepper

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Santa Fe










4 acorn squash Wild rice stuffing Preheat the oven to 350° F. If you’re baking a turkey, your oven should already be this temp. Slice about 1/4-inch off the bottom of the squash, and about one inch off the tops. This will allow the squash to stand upright on a baking dish. Fill each squash with wild rice stuffing and place it in a rimmed baking dish. Put in the oven about 1 1/2 hours after adding the broth to your turkey pan. Let cook for about 50 minutes, or until the squash is easily pierced with a fork. Spicy Cubed Sweet Potatoes Surprise your guests by preparing traditional holiday foods in new and unusual ways. Serves 4 to 6. 4 medium garnet sweet potatoes, washed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes 2 tablespoons molasses 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon honey 1 tablespoon lemon juice Pinch cayenne pepper Salt to taste Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a 13 x 9-inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment. In a large mixing bowl whisk together all ingredients except the sweet potatoes. Add the potatoes and stir until completely coated. Distribute potatoes over the baking sheet and bake for about 30 minutes or until the potatoes are soft. Serve hot drizzled with additional olive oil and course sea salt. You can bake potatoes while the turkey rests.


BEST quality!



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LEGENDARY EATING BY ARI LEVAUX hile legend has it that the original Thanksgiving was a virtual love-fest between the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag Indians, by now we’ve probably all heard that, in reality, the pilgrims and Indians were not, in fact, as nice to each other as we would like to remember. The pilgrims gave thanks, so the story goes, to the Wampanoag Indians for helping them survive their first winter in the New World. The story doesn't usually report that for the Pilgrims, this party was a matter of survival, as they were vastly outnumbered by their hosts, who could have easily wiped them off the face of the map. And winter was just around the corner. The part of the Thanksgiving story about how the Indians helped the pilgrims through the winter is true, something the Wampanoag tribe came to regret very soon.

FLASH IN THE PAN The recipe below, adapted from the Plimoth Plantation website (, also calls for hominy—aka, posole corn. I’ve also added green chile to the recipe, for an even more Southwestern feel. The Plimoth Plantation version also contains clam juice, a fishy nod to the flavors of the sea, which have inexplicably been dropped from our collective memory of Thanksgiving.


In a sermon at Plymouth two years after the original Thanksgiving, a Pilgrim preacher named Mather the Elder thanked God for smallpox, which had by that point wiped out many of the Wampanoag. A few years later, the Pilgrims and what was left of the Wampanoag were fighting each other in King Philip's War, which by today's standards would be considered more a massacre than a war. At the time of the first Thanksgiving, Native Americans of the region had, in fact, already domesticated turkeys—centuries before European contact. Nonetheless, the first historical record of turkeys being on the original Thanksgiving table was in the 1827 novel Northwood, by Sarah Josepha Hale. And the use of turkeys at Thanksgiving really took off in 1947, when the National Turkey Federation began giving a few turkeys to the American president in advance of every Thanksgiving. More recently, Tofurkey has had great commercial success as well, giving vegetarians a seat at the mythical Thanksgiving table, and allowing




AMYLEE UDELL he holidays are right around the corner. Baking traditions often tie us to our ethnic roots with the warmth of the kitchen and smells of ingredients coming together to draw out our nostalgia. It’s natural to want to pass down these memories and flavors to the next generation and to share our efforts with friends.



But alas, wheat has become the enemy of many! Maybe you feel horrible the day after a gluten-fest. Perhaps you or a loved one is allergic, has been diagnosed as having Celiac disorder or has embraced the Paleo world of grain-free eating. Is baking even possible? Where to begin with grain free-baking? First, let's be realistic: you cannot always replace wheat flour with a grain-free option and get a comparable substitute for your favorite holiday cookie. You will need to do some experimenting and may even need to adjust your expectations when it comes to old favorites. But I'll bet you can find some yummy new favorites that are easy to make. Most people use almond flour or coconut flour for their grain-free baking. Nut butters are another common ingredient. Coconut flour uses much less flour for most recipes and is safe for nut allergic individuals. You can grind your own almond meal from almonds though it will yield a course flour. Most people prefer blanched almond flour that is finely ground. If your flour is course, the resulting texture will be nutty, but that is not necessarily bad, depending on the recipe and your preference. Almond flour does relatively well in cakes, muffins, pancakes, tart shells and pie crusts. I have an admitted chocolate chip cookie weakness and have done an embarrassing number of experiments with grain-free versions. Almond flour has yielded the best results by far. The higher price of almond flour is what saves me from a daily chocolate chip cookie habit! With cakes and muffins, expect a crumblier result. And be aware almond flour burns easily, so keep an eye on your recipe the first time through! While I have not substituted almond flour in a favorite wheat flour recipe, you can try converting recipes by using a one to one replacement by VOLUME. You will then need to use slightly more rising agent than called for by your recipe. To replicate gluten's elasticity in the dough, most suggest adding 3/4 tsp. of xanthan gum to almond flour in bread recipes, 1/2 tsp. in cakes, or 1/4 tsp. in cookies per 1 cup of white flour replaced with almond meal. Not having xantham gum on hand at my house, I have skipped this and still had yummy results. This would be more important if you're trying to impress someone or trying to help someone adjust to a grain/gluten-free diet. Though it's not really baking, you can typically replace all of the wheat flour in coatings, breadings and batters with an equal amount of almond flour, as well.

And, given that venison was actually eaten at the first Thanksgiving—the Indians brought five deer—rather than turkey, hunters might want to substitute deer or elk for the turkey. Sobaheg (aka Thanksgiving Posole) them to participate in what is sometimes referred to as “Genocide Appreciation Day.” In addition to the absence of turkey, and genuine goodwill, the original Thanksgiving did not include cranberries, pie, women or children (nor did the men play football). But if tradition is what you’re after, many recipes exist for dishes that were legitimately on the first Thanksgiving table. Many of them include seafood, like oyster stew or boiled cod, which was plentiful on the East Coast at the time. While there was no pie, there was likely pumpkin—a Pilgrim recipe for stewed pumpkin exists. Other Pilgrim contributions to the three-day feast were boiled bread and cheese curd fritters. The Wampanoag recipe Sobaheg is still being made by descendants of the tribal members who managed to survive King Philip’s Massacre. It could also be considered a seasonable dish in the Southwest, as it contains corn, beans and squash—aka the Three Sisters.

1/2 pound dry beans (white, red, brown or spotted kidney-shaped beans, are what the recipe calls for, but why not pinto?) 1/2 pound posole corn 1 pound meat (turkey, deer or elk) 3 quarts cold water 1/2 pound winter squash, trimmed and cubed 1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds, pounded to a course flour Dried onion and/or garlic to taste Clam juice and/or salt to taste GREEN CHILE, to taste!!!! Combine dried beans, corn, meat, seasonings and water in a large pot. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, turn down to a very low simmer, and cook for about 2 1/2 hours. Stir occasionally to be certain food is not sticking to the bottom of the pot. When dried beans are tender, but not mushy, break up turkey meat, removing skin and bones. Add squash, and simmer very gently until they tender. Add sunflower or nut flour, stirring until thoroughly blended.

Coconut flour is a by-product of coconut milk production. The leftover coconut meat is dried and finely ground, leaving a powdery, yellowish flour-like substance with a “coconutty” scent. You usually do not need very much for your recipe, especially compared to wheat flour. It's very dry and absorbs a great deal of liquid. Many people are quite surprised at how much oil, eggs and other cooking liquid it absorbs. This fibrous flour does not come with an easy formula for direct substitutions for traditional wheat flour recipes. The only thing we DO know is you'll be adding more eggs and liquid and that you will need to experiment to find what works. Most bakers experienced with coconut flour suggest NOT trying to adapt a favorite recipe, at least not at first. Instead find recipes already tested with coconut flour and experience will soon teach you what is normal in texture and consistency for this type of flour. Coconut flour does well in pancakes and waffles and I've had good success in breakfast muffins and cakes. I've also made breakfast cereal with it. There are some recipes that use BOTH of these flours, taking advantage of the properties of both.

I've found all grain-free baked goods to take a little more patience to get out of the bakeware in one piece. Quality bakeware might be worth your investment. Well seasoned stoneware (I like can yield good results. This holiday season, discover new family favorites and create your own new baking traditions. With or without grains, you can indulge in the treats of the season. Molten Chocolate Lava Cake from 3 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate 6 tablespoons butter 2 eggs 1/3 cup honey 1 tablespoon coconut flour, firmly packed Preheat your oven to 450F. Grease 4 ramekins. Gently melt together chocolate and butter. Whisk in eggs, honey and coconut flour. Pour into greased ramekins. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes. You want to take it out immediately after the center slightly puffs up. Watch carefully at the end or you will just end up with fudge cakes (equally delicious, just not oozing). Gently run a knife around the ramekin to release the cake from the sides and invert onto serving plate. Serve warm with fresh berries and whipped cream. Add a few minutes to the baking time if your batter was kept in the fridge.

The Greenhouse Bistro & Bakery NOW OPEN Tues-Sat, 11-8pm Serving Dinner from 4-8pm Join Us for Our 2nd Annual Winter Light Labyrinth starting Thurs, Nov. 7th Opening Celebrations 6pm

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The light labyrinth will be open to the public throughout the holiday season Tues-Sat from 5:30-8pm. Come by and walk the labyrinth. Enjoy a 3-Course Mystical Celebration Dinner Nov. 7, 8 & 9th 4-8pm at the Green House Bistro & Bakery

(505) 866-1936 05 Thomas Rd., L.L., NM

food &



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from a feudal system. There are people who own land and people who farm it. Rarely are the farmers working urban farmland the same people who own that land. And even more rare is the prospect that a tenant



This is the time of year I dwell on death. As the first frosts come, I watch cities of bugs and plants that took a season to construct freeze and then obliterate with one cold night. How can something that takes years to create be destroyed so quickly? Another friend is moving his farm this fall. We tour some plots that have space at Erda and he tells me, “It sucks to move a farm.” I agree. We joke about digging out the lush, fertile topsoil he has created. I know a girl who did that once. Trucked away as much as she could before watching the condos rise.

n the nine years I’ve farmed, I’ve had seven plots of land, and I’ve lost four of them for various urban reasons,” laments Casey O'Leary, owner of Earthly Delights CSA and Seed Farm in Southern Idaho. Last week I had the chance to speak to my longtime friend and colleague about her most recent move. Landowners thought the farm looked “too messy” and after negotiations turned sour, they made a dramatic decision to bulldoze the entire garden right at harvest time. Casey told me many of her seed crops were lost but she is not disheartened. This story could be any young, urban farmer’s, growing on borrowed land and borrowed time. A death in the property owner’s family and the recipients of the land cut down heritage apple trees to build a house because, “that spot is so pretty.” New tenants promise, “the land owners know about you and they love that you're farming here” and it turns out to be false. The farmer ends up jumping the fence to pick lettuce and spinach. The current owner decides to sell the property and the farmer has to move. These are all real scenarios and they happen to urban farmers every day. I hear the statistic about the average age of farmers in New Mexico being 60 and the call to action for those who want to work the earth and create a more sustainable future. How do we begin to do that? What I see when I look around at my community and colleagues is, for the most part, not too far

thousands of bees and other pollinating and beneficial insects. To think of this patch of heaven under a concrete slab makes my heart hurt, not just for me but also for the sparrows dipping their sharp beaks into a sunflower supper.

farmer will ever buy that property. Most of them acknowledge they will have to leave eventually. Currently, one of Erda Gardens’ plots, where I farm, is bequeathed to a young man who will one day build a house there. The soil is beautiful. Seven years of hard work and compost and care has left it rich and black. One of our smallest plots, it consistently produces a bounty of flowers and perennial herbs, and it attracts

When we throw the word “sustainability” around, what does it really mean? Are we rooted and poised to create a new food system? Do we have a longterm vision in mind? Erda Gardens, with the grace of the current owners, and the help of our community, has the opportunity to become truly sustainable: A community farm, bought and owned by the community and one that we never have to jump the fence to harvest from or cart away humus as we are forced to leave, or cry over tree stumps that used to produce pollen and apples for everyone. We at Erda Gardens ask for your help to become the farmers and owners of our future. To find out more, view the property or donate www.erda

This year you will find a wide assortment of delicious pies at all our Co-op locations. We offer pies from some of our favorite bakeries, and our amazing deli pastry chefs.



Specialty Pies... Our Co-op deli pastry chefs will whip up some delicious specialty pies using alternative sweeteners; or look for everything you need to create your own pie, including local unbleached flour, bulk nuts and dried fruit, frozen and fresh berries, apples, pie pumpkins, sweet potatoes and other pie fillings throughout the store!



GMOs in the news Consumer Common


BY BRETT BAKKER here are plenty of articles, posts and newsbites about GMOs that feature lists upon lists of brand names and products to buy or avoid; but it's much simpler than that. Knowing what’s what and using common sense is key.


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what we’re getting, loopholes and all. A private sector group, the Non-GMO Project (NGP) and its regulations aren’t subject to multiple layers of oversight (like the NOP). NGP does have a good track record, though, and appears about as trustworthy as you can



For comparison, gluten-free labels are everywhere these days but they are useless on foods that can’t contain gluten (gluten-free water anyone?). Gluten is prevalent in grains like wheat, rye and barley, so most flours, pastas and malted products are sure to contain gluten. Don’t bother looking for gluten-free labels on produce, beans, meats, etc., unless, of course, these foods are processed and packaged. There are a zillion hidden ingredients in processed foods. Much of this same reasoning applies to GMOs. The first thing you need to know is which are the most common GMO foods. GMO’s in Production as of December 2011: Alfalfa (first planting 2011) Canola (90% of US crop) Corn (88% of US crop in 2011) Cotton oil (90% of US crop in 2011) Papaya (most of Hawaiian crop; approximately 1,000 acres) Soy (94% of US crop in 2011) Sugar Beets (95% of US crop in 2010) Zucchini and Yellow Summer Squash (25,000 + acres) If you’re consuming any of these foods (directly or by buying a packaged item that contains any of these) and they’re not certified organic or verified non-GMO, you’re likely eating GMOs. Farms, food processors and distributors realize the marketing potential of non-GMO food. Because of this, there’s little need to scan or memorize lists of non-GMO companies. If they care enough to go through the cost and hassle of certification/verification, it will say so on the label. This may be organic certification or it may be Non-GMO Verified. Organic certification is controlled by the USDA/National Organic Program (NOP). Since no one really trusts the government, we can be skeptical, but at least the rules and regulations are public so we know



LAUNDERING BY RONNIE CUMMINS, ORGANIC CONSUMERS ASSOCIATION ou know what they say. You can’t fool mom. When a group of pro-labeling moms in Washington, DC, figured out that the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) was breaking the state’s campaign finance disclosure laws to defeat the Washington State GMO Labeling Initiative I-522 they did something about it. They formed a grassroots group, Moms for Labeling, and they sued the GMA for violating state disclosure laws by laundering money for big corporate interests.


Savor the



Nov. 16!

SAMPLE THE FLAVORS OF THE SEASON at your favorite Co-op location! Sample traditional and gourmet local Thanksgiving dishes, organic fresh turkeys, vegetarian specialties, home baked healthy pies and so much more. Get great ideas on what to cook or let us make your holiday feasting easy—sample a wide variety of dishes, and then make your Thanksgiving dinner stress free by ordering them from your neighborhood Co-op Deli (See menu on page 6).


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get. There are also self–proclaimed “GMO Free” labels, which are only as reliable as the self-proclaimers, so be skeptical. Note that being certified organic does not guarantee there's been no GMO cross pollination. It merely means the farmer did not use any GMO seeds/plants. Cross pollination and gene flow are natural and can't be completely avoided. That said, be aware that certain “inputs” are allowed that may come from GMO sources. For example, organic livestock may only be fed cottonseed meal if it is certified organic. However, certified organic farms are allowed to use non-organic (and likely GMO) cottonseed meal for fertilizer. Non-GMO Verified means there are no detectable GMO residues above 0.9%. Detecting GMOs is a newer science than GMOs themselves so there are limitations. Although many food processors are nonGMO verified, a non-GMO label on, say, cranberries or a can of beans is a bit dubious. Sure, the company is showing (and advertising) their support, but if there

is no such thing as GMO cranberries or the can of beans just contains beans, water and salt (all non- GMO), it smacks of marketing ploy and pandering. This may sound harsh but consider this: non-GMO verified beans were not intentionally raised without the use of GMOs, so it’s not like the farm or the processor has gone out of its way to do anything special except buy verification (advertising). On the other hand, the producers of organic and Non-GMO Verified corn chips have gone through two rigorous and ongoing processes. I suppose one could argue that non-GMO verification of products that couldn’t possibly contain GMOs serves to familiarize the average consumer with the concept. While that’s true it’s still the ol’ status quo: sound bites, blips and catchphrases rather than education. Before I totally gag myself with a foot-in-mouth, non-GMO verification of processed multi-ingredient products is essential. Corn, soy and sugar are hidden ingredients in many processed foods. Starch, lecithin, soy, canola oil, corn syrup and all that are somewhat obvious but don’t forget about the ingredients of the ingredients. Nonorganic oils, for example, are not merely extracted by pressing the seed or what-have-you. Synthetic extractants are routinely used to squeeze every last marketable drop, but since these are “processing aids,” they don’t show up on the ingredient panel. Organic certification prohibits such aids but non-GMO verification won’t catch them unless they are derived from and contain detectable levels of GMOs. Just because something was raised or processed without GMOs doesn’t mean it was raised or processed organically. Non-GMO Verified meat may come from the animals that ate GMO feed. Biofuel from GMO corn? They are not growing lower yielding native blue corn but the latest and most productive GMO variety that has been bred for that purpose. The takeaway here is that neither Organic Certification nor non-GMO verification is foolproof. Each has strengths and weaknesses, as do all other labels. Organic does not mean there’s been no GMO cross pollination. Non-GMO doesn’t mean organic. Local does not mean organic. Fair Trade does not mean grown without pesticides. Verified pesticide free does not mean no synthetic fertilizers were used. I could go on and on.

Their complaint? The GMA conceals the identities of out-of-state corporations, namely Big Food companies, which funnel donations to the NO on I-522 campaign through the multi-billion dollar Washington, DC-based lobbying group. These actions would have made the GMA a PAC subject to all the appropriate laws and fillings. The Moms had a whistleblower lined up to testify. But then the judge dismissed the case, on a technicality.

The NO on I-522 campaign has so far raised $17.1 million to blanket the airwaves with lies, as it tries to scare voters into voting against the I-522 GMO labeling initiative. The GMA, which represents over 300 corporations, including Kraft, Kellogg’s, Monsanto, Dupont, Starbucks, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, ConAgra and General Mills, has kicked in $7.2 million so far—$5 million more than the lobbying group spent last year in California, to defeat a similar GMO labeling initiative.

You’d think that would have been enough to make the GMA happy, but no. The lobbying giant went after the Moms with a countersuit, prompting a judge to slap the Moms with a $10,000 fine (not including attorneys’ fees), under a law that is supposed to protect citizens from frivolous suits by big companies. The new countersuit by NO on I-522 asks a judge to decide whether the Moms' lawsuit is a "strategic lawsuit against public participation"— that is, a lawsuit aimed at denying or intimidating someone from exercising their right to free speech. It's known as a "SLAPP" suit statute and the law's goal is generally to protect citizens from frivolous suits by big companies who try to make it difficult to fight them. But in this case, the law is wielded by big companies against citizens.

END OF STORY? Not yet. In dismissing the suit, the judge ruled that under the circumstances, only the state attorney general now has the authority to sue the GMA for violating Washington’s Public Disclosure Act. ACTION ALERT: Help the Moms for Labeling by insisting that Washington’s attorney general force the GMA to comply with the state’s campaign disclosure laws. Send a message to Bob Ferguson, attorney general for the state of Washington. Ask Mr. Ferguson to investigate the GMA’s money laundering scheme. To help the Moms go to and sign the on-line letter to Attorney General Ferguson or write him at: 1125 Washington Street SE, PO Box 40100, Olympia, WA 98504-0100.

Amy Biehl School Science and Engineering MENTORS wanted for the 3rd Annual Mentor Project

Work with science minded high school students on their research projects. Mentor slots in all branches of science and engineering throughout November. For more details contact Katie Barnett-Rivas at

agua es vida

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PROTECT BY SANDRA POSTEL, GLOBAL WATER POLICY PROJECT Reprinted with permission from the National Geographic’s online blog Water Currents and the author. Please go to to read the original article.





eptember’s record-breaking rainfall and floods brought tragic loss of life and property to parts of Colorado and New Mexico. The devastation has been hard to fathom. But for a river like the Rio Grande, which has suffered through years of drought, the floods produced a welcome reunion in parts of New Mexico: the river once again connected with its floodplain forests, a vital component of its overall health. The Rio Grande, the second largest river in the southwestern United States, boasts a remarkable bosque, or riverside cottonwood forest, which extends some 200 miles (320 kilometers) through New Mexico – from Santa Fe south to the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, famed for its overwintering population of sandhill cranes. By some accounts, the bosque of the Rio Grande is the largest continuous cottonwood gallery forest in the world. Derived from the Spanish word for woodlands, the bosque is literally a ribbon of green in the desert landscape. For many centuries, its tiered layers of trees and vegetation, all nourished by the river’s natural floods, provided habitats and homes for a rich diversity of birds and wildlife, including whooping cranes, wild turkeys, beaver and mink. Some 24 native fish species lived in the river and the adjacent wetlands of the bosque. But the construction of dams and levees over the last halfcentury has severed the river’s natural connection to its floodplain forest. The annual spring flood, driven by melt-

ing snows in the headwaters, largely disappeared as dams captured and stored the floodwaters. Without the nutrientrich sediment brought in by the annual floods, the riverside ecosystem – and its diversity of life – declined. And so it was with some excitement that I headed to the middle Rio Grande on Saturday, September 14, when the river was raging higher than it had in decades. The floodwaters pouring out of the canyons upstream had dumped an enormous volume of water into its channel. While Cochiti Dam upstream of Albuquerque and the levees along the floodplain did their jobs of preventing catastrophic flooding of property through the middle Rio Grande valley, the river flowed high enough in places to spread out into its adjacent forests, rejuvenating this aquatic ecosystem after years of drought. I walked through the bosque outside the town of Los Lunas, some 25 miles south of Albuquerque. There, stately cottonwoods stood in saturated soils, soaking up vital nutrients as they drank in the floodwaters. The groundwater below, which sustains the trees through the dry spells, was getting replenished as the floodwaters seeped into the earth.



A Vision of Protection The scene was a timely reminder of the bosque’s ecological needs, because Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry has proposed a new and much debated vision for the city’s stretch of the bosque that, in its attempts to make the river more accessible to residents, risks further damage to this unique ecosystem’s long-term health. Chiming in on the debate is Estella Leopold, whose father, the great conservationist Aldo Leopold, was instrumental in developing a plan to conserve the bosque of the Rio Grande. In 1918-1919, Leopold served as Secretary of the Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce and pushed for the creation of a bosque nature park that would protect this critical ecosystem – a vision realized in 1983 when the New Mexico legislature created a state park encompassing 4,300 acres (1,740 hectares) of the riverside woodland. In a recent letter to the mayor, Dr. Leopold, an emeritus professor of biology at the University of Washington in Seattle, wrote: “We at the Aldo Leopold Foundation are deeply alarmed by the new plan that would, if enacted, work against the goal of having an extensive area of wild nature and bird habitat along the river bordering the city. We feel that the Rio Grande Vision discards the protective mechanisms for the existing park— the City’s Bosque Action Plan which established policies to ensure the conservation of the bosque in its natural state.” Preservation of the Rio Grande’s cottonwood forests will require not only a more ecologically sound strategy for people’s use of them, but changes in river management as well. But hopefully the City, with the Rio Grande running through it, will step back and develop a plan that preserves the legacy of Aldo Leopold and his land ethic—and protects the ecological richness of the bosque for generations to come. SANDRA POSTEL is a dedicated Co-op member and shopper, and a director of the Global Water Policy Project, Freshwater Fellow of the National Geographic Society, and author of several books and numerous articles on global water issues. She is co-creator of Change the Course, the national freshwater conservation and restoration campaign being piloted in the Colorado River Basin by National Geographic and its partners. Please pledge your support as for every personal pledge to conserve (the pledges don't cost anything), they promise to return 1,000 gallons to a depleted portion of the Colorado River basin. TAKE THE PLEDGE ONLINE at, or by texting River to 77177


WATER PROTECTION By Michael Jensen, Amigos Bravos MICHAEL JENSEN, AMIGOS BRAVOS t’s easy to feel discouraged, frustrated, even overwhelmed thinking about all the threats to water from climate change, contamination and overuse. Being in “fight” mode seems like the normal way to look at things. But there is a lot to be thankful for. Here is a very partial list of things I’m thankful for (in no particular order). BY


The September Flood in the Albuquerque Area In mid-September, the Rio Grande had less than 10 cubic feet per second (cfs) flowing in it. At the end of that week, there were more than 5000 cfs flowing at Central Bridge. People, me among them, were so happy to see a real river again. We learned that the restoration work done for the silvery minnow and to reconnect the Bosque with the river also works to minimize flood impacts. We are going to see more fluctuations between a dry river and a flooding river, but the flood made it clear that we do know something about how to help the river be more resilient and that people want to help because the river matters to them. Citizens Organizing to Preserve the Bosque Mayor Berry’s “ABQ The Plan” is about economic development in Albuquerque. In May, the “design and implementation plan” document was released and spurred a strong and fast-growing grassroots effort to push back against what was a clear effort to turn the “wild” Bosque (the Vision’s own word) into an urban park. Community groups are holding meetings and gathering signatures opposing the plan. Several hundred people came to a public meeting held by the City and insisted that public comment be heard. When the second public meeting was cancelled by the City, the community held the meeting anyway. The local Sierra Club ( has hosted a listserv (RioCentral-Bosque@Lists.Sierraclub.Org) to help coordinate community input, education and action. Comments on the Rio Grande Vision can be sent to: or mailed to The Mayor's Office, PO Box 1293, Albuquerque NM 87103. The Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge The Trust for Public Land ( has spearheaded the effort to turn the 570-acre Price’s Dairy in the far South Valley into the first urban national wildlife refuge in the southwest. For more information connect with the Friends group ( The BEMP Program The Bosque Ecosystem Monitoring Program (www.bosque is an incredibly valuable resource for the Rio Grande and for students across the state. BEMP operates sites along the entire Middle Rio Grande that monitor surface and groundwater resources as well as plants and animals. BEMP works with students from across the state to educate

them on river and bosque ecosystem issues and provide them real-world get-your-hands-dirty experience. It’s a model for what all (science) education should be. The Gila Resources Information Project (GRIP) and the Gila Conservation Coalition (GCC) The Arizona Water Settlement Act (AWSA) threatens the Gila River in New Mexico. GRIP ( and the GCC ( have led the effort to prevent AWSA implementation from diverting water out of the upper Gila – New Mexico’s last free flowing river into Arizona and to Las Cruces and other cities outside the basin. GRIP, the GCC and their allies have developed a comprehensive set of non-diversion alternatives that would help guarantee water supply for the basin and keep the Gila flowing. The Multicultural Alliance for a Safe Environment Communities in the Grants/Milan Mineral Belt and on the Navajo Nation have suffered extensive environmental and public health effects from the legacy of uranium mining. The prospect of new uranium mining in the region has deeply divided people, with some public meetings descending into ugly racist attacks against Native peoples who largely oppose new mining—at least until all the old mining sites are cleaned up. MASE developed as a conscious effort to bring diverse communities in the region together over common concerns like cleaning up the uranium legacy, building cross-cultural bridges, and advocating for alternatives for economic development. MASE has educated the local media and some local legislators and opened space for dialog in the community on these critically important issues. Isleta Pueblo There has been a contentious process in the Middle Rio Grande as the EPA develops a new approach to dealing with stormwater: a watershed-based permit process. Some jurisdictions, such as the City of Albuquerque and AMAFCA, have said they can live with the proposed permit process. Others, like Bernalillo County and the entire building industry, oppose the entire idea even though a watershedbased permit could lead to more efficiency and lower costs while creating better stormwater pollution management. Isleta Pueblo ( stands out: in its very brief comment to the EPA, the Pueblo stated that it was going to ask for a waiver to formal participation based on its very small size, but would continue to carry out and extend its stormwater management activities because it was the right thing to do.

Non-Profit Environmental Law Firms It would be impossible to fight corporate polluters and their government enablers without the incredible help of environmental nonprofit law firms. Hats off to the New Mexico Environmental Law Center (www., the Western Environmental Law Center (, EarthJustice (, and High Desert Energy + Environment Law Partners (http:// Amigos Bravos It’s a shameless plug for the organization I’ve worked with for 8 years, but Amigos Bravos ( is an amazingly effective organization that for 25 years has held polluters and government agencies accountable for harming the environment and the public health and provided a constant voice for rivers and the communities that depend on them. And MANY THANKS to La Montanita Co-op for all their support over the years.

Co-op Connection News November, 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 November, 2013  

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