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EDUCATIONAL SERIES

COMMUNITY EDUCATION A COMMON THEME CO-OP FOCUS CAFÉS

AT THE

BY LISA BANWARTH-KUHN, FOR THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS ou are cordially invited to attend a free Community Educational Series every third Tuesday of the month at Immanuel Presbyterian Church on Carlisle across from the Nob Hill store. Beginning March 15th the Study Hour will meet from 5:30pm–6:30pm before the Board business meeting and all Co-op owners are encouraged to attend.

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YOU’RE INVITED! EDUCATIONAL FUN FOR A VIBRANT

COOPERATIVE FUTURE This Community Educational Series is the outcome of what you, our member-owners, said you wanted at the three Co-op Focus Cafés last fall. A lot of work went into collating all the suggestions made at our Co-op Focus Cafés; every idea written down on paper, every sticky note left at the tables and every star-shaped sticky note presented at the end of each session was read, noted and submitted to a list of recurring topics. The top recurring theme from each Café was Education. The suggestions under the theme of education covered a wide variety of ideas: education about the cooperative model, water, climate change, farming, health, food and cooking. The Board’s Member Engagement Committee discussed how to address these suggestions and we realized that there is already an ongoing educational opportunity.

26TH ANNUAL

EARTHFEST

As we do every year, we're hoping for a beautiful day, and with Mother Earth's blessing we will once again take time to celebrate "Her,” reaffirming our commitment to restoring and sustaining our blue/green planetary gem and cultivating a sustainable future for us all.

CELEBRATION ON SILVER STREET BEHIND THE NOB HILL CO-OPOPBY BY ROBIN SEYDELOBIN SEYDEL

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As in years past, the Co-op’s 26th Annual Celebrate the Earth Festival in Nob Hill is a chance to get your bedding plants, talk

Here’s your opportunity to participate in an ongoing Co-op Community Educational Series brought to you by the Board of Directors every third Tuesday of the month from 5:30 to 6:30pm. Please come! For more information please contact the La Montañita Board of Directors at bod@lamontanita.coop.

allowed), be Co-op members, be juried if they have not set up with us before and be willing to participate in the “placement lottery.” Artists and crafters must also have their city business license (contact the ABQ City Treasury office for a temporary one if necessary). Some of our artists, activists and farmers will be setting up in front of Immanuel Presbyterian Church, our longtime community partner and EarthFest co-sponsor.

COME TOGETHER!

h joy! Spring is coming and the surest sign is that preparations are in full swing for La Montañita Coop’s 26th Annual EarthFest. Over the years this event has grown and grown, thanks to the support of you, our incredible Co-op community. From its humble beginnings years ago, this festival has become one of the largest, if not the largest, Earth Day festival in the state and one of the most beloved community-based festivals. It is La Montañita Co-op’s great pleasure to once again create a celebration that, in keeping with the cooperative principles of Community Education, Information and Training (Cooperative Principle #5) and Concern for Community (Cooperative Principle #7), provides an opportunity for us all to come together.

Members have always been invited to Board meetings. Most Board meetings have a study hour included. Research and preparation for discussion topics will be posted on the Co-op’s website one week before the meeting. The Board Study topic and reading material for discussion can be downloaded from the La Montañita Co-op website at www.lamontanita.coop/board-meetings.

to and learn from the farming and gardening experts in our midst, get educated on the important environmental issues we face, grow and strengthen our community, enjoy the creations of our gifted fine and performing artists, and get active and take action together to make our community and the world a better place for us all to share. EarthFest will be held on Sunday, April 24 this year. Our little street fills up quickly, so if you would like a booth please reserve your space early. We do give first priority to environmental, social and economic justice non-profit organizations as well as farmers and farming organizations. Artists and craftspeople must make and sell their own art (no kits or imports

Join friends and neighbors as we educate and inform ourselves, dance joyously in the streets to welcome the upcoming growing season and take action on behalf of our precious Mother Earth. Watch for more information in our April Co-op Connection News, and on social media outlets about the Co-op’s 26th Annual EarthFest! For more information or to reserve your FREE booth space, contact Robin at 505-217-2027 or toll free at 877-775-2667 or email her at robins@lamontanita.coop.

SAVE THE DATE! SUNDAY

APRIL 24

NOB HILL CO-OP

FINANCING A VIBRANT LOCAL FOOD SYSTEM

LA MONTAÑITA

FUND

LOAN APPLICATIONS FOR THE 2016 GROWING SEASON AVAILABLE NOW! BY ROBIN SEYDEL n 2016 the La Montañita Fund is celebrating its fifth year of operation and its fifth offering to Co-op owners who want to invest in the local food system and economy. Enrollment in this grassroots investment opportunity ends on March 31. We are pleased to have made loans to capitalize local food producers over the years totaling just over $200,000. We have nearly 70 Coop investors with a total investment of $151,750 and over the past years we have paid an average of 1.7% return on investment.

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The return on investment for 2015 activities was 1.669% which, for nurture capital, is a respectable return. The LaM FUND has loaned funds to food producers around the state for everything ranging from a few hundred dollars for seed to the purchase of a delivery truck, hoop houses, greenhouses, irrigation supplies, a bull with good genetics to increase herd size, goats, and bringing a value-added product market. One heartening aspect of the LaM FUND is the deepening relationships we are building with food producers in our midst. Many

farmers, ranchers and value-added producers have second and third loans with the LaM FUND as they continue to scale up their production, take on new enterprises to expand their on-farm income or develop their businesses in other ways. These are the kind of long term community relationships, we believe are at the core of renewal of a vibrant local food system, and we are most pleased to be able to foster them. Another exciting aspect of this relationship building is the fact that LaM FUND investors and Co-op member-owners know what farms, ranches and valueadded producers they are invested in. Investors can then complete their circle of support for the local food system by purchasing products from those farms and ranches when they see them on Co-op shelves, at growers markets and, thanks to the work of our Coop Distribution Center, at other retail locations and restaurants throughout the state. INVESTORS If you are interested in investing with the La Montañita Fund please contact us before our enrollment period for 2016 ends on March 31. We will be happy to send you a memorandum, the intra-state form of a prospectus, and the investor agreement, answer any questions you might have and help you get enrolled before the deadline.

LOANS TO CAPITALIZE YOUR FOOD BUSINESS NEEDS Want to expand your farm income, try a new crop, or put up a hoop house for four-season production? Our loan application process is quick and easy and we are happy to walk prospective food producers though the process. The loans are affordable and repayment terms can be tailored to the needs of the producer, their harvest and products. As noted earlier, many of our borrowers come back to LaM FUND for loans again and again saying it's easier than going to the bank and that we understand their food business needs. La Montañita's 40 years of experience and the services beyond capital that we can provide convey the support and empowerment for their endeavor of our caring Co-op community. If you are a food producer in New Mexico and want more information or are an investor interested in enrolling during our enrollment period that ends March 31, please contact me at 505-217-2027 or tollfree at 877-775-2667 or at robins@lamontanita.coop.


IN OUR MIDST La Montañita Cooperative A Community-Owned Natural Foods Grocery Store Nob Hill 7am – 10pm M – Sa, 8am – 10pm Su 3500 Central SE, ABQ, NM 87106 505-265-4631 Rio Grande 7am – 10pm M – Su 2400 Rio Grande NW, ABQ, NM 87104 505-242-8800 Gallup 8am – 8pm M – Sa, 10am – 6pm Su 105 E Coal, Gallup, NM 87301 505-863-5383 Santa Fe 7am – 10pm M – Su 913 West Alameda, Santa Fe, NM 87501 505-984-2852 GRABnGO 8am – 6pm M – F, 11am – 4pm Sa UNM Bookstore, 2301 Central SW, ABQ, NM 87131 505-277-9586 Westside 7am – 9pm M – Su 3601 Old Airport Ave, ABQ, NM 87114 505-503-2550 Cooperative Distribution Center 9am – 5pm, M – F 901 Menaul NE, ABQ, NM 87107 505-217-2010 Support Office 9am – 5pm, M – F 901 Menaul NE, ABQ, NM 87107 505-217-2001 Support Staff: 217-2001 TOLL FREE: 877-775-2667 (COOP) • General Manager/Dennis Hanley 217-2028 dennis.hanley@lamontanita.coop • Controller/John Heckes 217-2029 johnh@lamontanita.coop • Computers/Info Technology David Varela 217-2011 tech@lamontanita.coop • Special Projects Manager/Mark Lane 259-4396 markl@lamontanita.coop • Human Resources/Sharret Rose 217-2023 hr@lamontanita.coop • Marketing/Karolyn Cannata-Winge 217-2024 kcwinge@lamontanita.coop • Membership/Robin Seydel 217-2027 robins@lamontanita.coop • CDC/MichelleFranklin 217-2010 mf@lamontanita.coop • Operations Director/Jason Trant 242-8800 Jason.Trant@lamontanita.coop

March 2016 2

ELECTRIC GRID INDEPENDENCE

ONE WORLD CO-OP BY TOM KUHN he public electric utility industry is increasingly concerned about advances in rechargeable storage batteries. A 2013 Edison Electric Institute (a utility trade association) study stated “One can imagine a day when battery-storage technology or micro turbines could allow customers to be electric grid independent.”

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The utility's concerns are well founded. When net metered with the grid, a PV producer/homeowner will 'sell' excess power to the utility during the day, and use the grid for power at night. This allows the utility to preserve the homeowners dependence on the grid. And, not coincidentally, an ever-changing contract with the net metered user and public utility commissions. (For example, read this op-ed from a Nevada PV adopter blindsided by state regulators: http://lasvegassun.com/news/2016/jan/12/nv-energy-puc-price-solarenergy-beyond-residents/) With safe, long-life rechargeable batteries, the homeowner powers the household and stores energy during the day, then draws on the reserve power during low or non-producing times. This does not require the homeowner go off-grid, nor does it require net metering with the utility. The property owner simply produces/consumes energy with an autonomous system, and when required, uses the grid as any other consumer would. They will use much less grid energy, divorcing themselves from the fossil/nuclear fuels of conventional power production. One key consideration of net metering is often lost in translation. When your system is net metered and the grid goes down, your system must contractually stop feeding the grid. A small allotment of your PV may feed a 20amp household circuit, but your system is shut down. An autonomous system would not be affected and would continue to power your home. There are numerous available battery options available for the home PV supporter. Large-format lead-acid designs are widely used for storage in backup power supplies in cell phone towers, high-availability settings like hospitals, and stand-alone power systems. For these roles, modified versions of the standard cell may be used to improve storage times and

Membership Costs: $15 for 1 year/ $200 Lifetime Membership + tax Co-op Connection Staff: • Managing Editor: Robin Seydel robins@lamontanita.coop 217-2027 • Layout and Design: foxyrock inc • Cover/Centerfold: Co-op Marketing Dept. • Advertising: JR Riegel • Editorial Assistant: JR Riegel j.riegel@lamontanita.coop 217-2016 • Printing: Santa Fe New Mexican Membership information is available at all six Co-op locations, or call 217-2027 or 877-775-2667 email: robins@lamontanita.coop website: www.lamontanita.coop Membership response to the newsletter is appreciated. Email the Managing Editor, robins@lamontanita.coop Copyright ©2016 La Montañita Co-op Supermarket Reprints by prior permission. The Co-op Connection is printed on 65% post-consumer recycled paper. It is recyclable.

CO-OP

YOU OWN IT

Lithium-ion batteries (Li-Ion) are common in consumer electronics, and are one of the most popular types of rechargeable batteries. Li-Ion have high energy density, small memory effect, and only a slow loss of charge when not in use. Lithium-ion batteries can be dangerous under some conditions and can pose a safety hazard since they contain, unlike other rechargeable batteries, a flammable electrolyte. Because of this, the testing standards for these batteries are more stringent than those for acid-electrolyte batteries. Poor quality Li-Ion batteries will ignite when over charged (think hoverboard). As a result, Lithium-ion batteries are considered a hazardous material and cannot be disposed of or shipped by conventional means. The lithium iron phosphate battery is a type of lithium-ion battery which uses LiFePO4 as a cathode material. LiFePO4 batteries have somewhat lower energy density than the more common LiCoO2 (lithium-ion battery), but offers longer lifetimes, better power density (the rate that energy can be drawn from them) and are inherently safer. LiFePO4 is finding a number of roles in vehicle use and backup power. Because of its excellent thermal stability, safety characteristics, and electrochemical performance, lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries are the safest type of Lithium batteries. They will not catch on fire, and if punctured contain no hazardous materials. There are no shipping or disposal restriction, save common sense.

Store Team Leaders: • Valerie Smith/Nob Hill 265-4631 valeries@lamontanita.coop • John Mullé/Rio Grande 242-8800 jm@lamontanita.coop • William Prokopiak/Santa Fe 984-2852 willpro@lamontanita.coop • Leaf Ashley/Gallup 575-863-5383 leaf.ashley@lamontanita.coop • Joe Phy/Westside 505-503-2550 josephp@lamontanita.coop Co-op Board of Directors: email: bod@lamontanita.coop • President: Ariana Marchello • Secretary: Marshall Kovitz • Lisa Banwarth-Kuhn • James Esqueda • Jessica Rowland • Gregory Gould • Tracy Sprouls • Tammy Parker • Courtney White

reduce maintenance requirements. Gel-cells and absorbed glass-mat batteries are common in these roles. Although widely available, lead acid batteries require frequent maintenance, are considered a hazardous material and have limited life spans.

OneWorld Co-op currently stocks 5KWh and 10KWh Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) battery systems. In stock now with extra-special pricing for Co-op members, these batteries are very high quality double glass 260 watt Canadian solar PV modules.

SLOW FOOD EAT WELL, LIVE WELL BY REBECCA JO DAKOTA, SLOW FOOD ALBUQUERQUE Do you enjoy cooking fresh food in a warm kitchen to share with family and friends? Are you concerned about the bee population dying off? Do you wish that more people were supporting local growers, planting school gardens or protecting food-related cultural traditions?

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n short, are you into good, clean and fair food for all? If so, there is a group for you: Slow Food! Slow Food is an international, non-profit grassroots organization with a local chapter in Albuquerque. You are invited to join. We host six fun and educational food events each year. In the past, we have held a coffee tasting at a local coffee company, a farm tour, a backyard apiary tour and honey-tasting event, and a talk on the stresses on Laotian farmers due to unexploded ordinance (this event was served up along with a delicious, free Laotian meal). This year we are planning among other things a wine tasting, farm tour and visit to a

Our next One World Co-op monthly workshop will be held March 19, from 11am–1pm with hands-on training for producing your own power. For more information and to register for the workshop or for member pricing on panels go to www.oneworld.coop. Conservation is not about returning to the past, it is about managing the future.

local grain mill. Check out what we are doing at: www.facebook.com/SlowFoodABQ THERE ARE 4 WAYS TO GET INVOLVED: • Get the electronic monthly newsletter and learn about our events. Send an email to: slowfoodabq@gmail.com • Attend the free or low cost events. If there is a cost, Slow Food USA members receive reduced rates. Event notices are sent to the email list. • Join Slow Food USA! It is easy and important. Every organization needs at least a little funding to operate. You can go to the URL below to join (and be sure to indicate that your chapter affiliation is Albuquerque): www.slowfoodusa.org/join-or-renew-membership By joining Slow Food USA, you are supporting our local chapter, biodiversity and the work of school gardens. Your donation is fully tax-deductible. • Be an active member. Share your expertise on something related to food: gardening, making pickles, homemade bread, whatever it is. You know that everyone deserves food that is grown sustainably and ethically, prepared with care, and enjoyed in the community of others. By joining, you’re helping to make that happen, while also having a lot of fun and good company.


NATURE AWAKENS

March 2016 3

VETERAN FARMER

PROJECT OUR 5TH

GROWING SEASON the hoop house irrigation system meant the hoop house was not functional last winter. Additionally, a change in the Rio Grande Community Farm program will mean that the hoop house is also not available to us in coming seasons. But with their usual resolve and determination, our Veteran participants are undeterred and continue to move forward. BY ROBIN SEYDEL ith the perseverance and dedication that is characteristic of the men and women of our Armed Services, the Veteran Farmer Project continues into its fifth growing season. We continue to overcome obstacles and challenges with a camaraderie that is also characteristic of our New Mexican veterans.

This year we are pleased to be farming in four 4' by 36' plots near the community garden rows. For us this means the opportunities to build deeper friendships with others who have rows at the gardens and increase the sense of community Veterans experience as part of the project.

This year we will once again be farming at Los Poblanos Open Space in the area managed by the Rio Grande Community Farm. Last year we had ten 80-foot rows and harvested approximately 1,650 pounds of high quality vegetables to sell at the VA Growers' Market as well as several hundred pounds more that over the course of the season went home to feed participating veterans and their families.

In mid-February we cleaned out our old site, pulled trellises and piled bio-mass for composting. A big thanks goes out to Tom Kuhn of Bethany Organic Farm. A veteran himself, he stepped in to help us get our seeds started for this growing season in his greenhouse. We will once again be working afternoons from 3–5pm until May 1 on Tuesdays and Thursdays, then switch to early mornings in May. We hear from RGCF staff that our plots will be ready for planting in mid April.

While we were tremendously excited to have the opportunity to finance the move of a 30’ by 70’ hoop house (thanks to a grant from the New Mexico Department of Agriculture) and learn a new set of hoop house skills, sadly that didn't pan out. A crack in the cistern that was to provide water for

To get updates on work days and other VFP activities contact Robin at robins@lamontanita.coop or call 217-2027.

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For regular updates on VFP happenings, sign up for the weekly email at: www.lamontanita.coop/VFP. Veteran or not, all are welcome to dig the earth and join in the fun!

FRIENDS OF THE RIO GRANDE NATURE CENTER DONATE-A-DIME BY JR RIEGEL

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CO-OP PROGRAM Donate your BAG CREDIT!

Please bring your reusable bags and donate the dime to help support the Friends of the Rio Grande Nature Center. Donations will support educational programs, community events, and maintenance of the park and Nature Center. If you’d like to learn more, visit the Nature Center, or to become a Friend of the Rio Grande Nature Center, visit their website at www.rgnc.org or call 505-344-7240.

BRING A BAG... DONATE-A-DIME

IT ADDS UP

This month your bag credit donations go to Friends of the Rio Grande Nature Center: Conservation, education, and community enjoyment of a precious riparian habitat for this and future generations. In JANUARY your bag credit donations totaling $2,727.94 went to the New Mexico Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

DONATE-A-DIME TO

RIO GRANDE NATURE CENTER

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

Alamed a Blvd. Coors Blvd.

A great variety of birds, reptiles, insects, and mammals make their homes in the park or visit at certain times of year. Depending on when you visit, you can see animals as diverse as harriers, hummingbirds, porcupines, wood-

Keep your calendar open in May for the Annual Herbfest at Rio Grande Nature Center State Park! This annual celebration benefits educational programming at the park, and it includes guided nature walks, a native plant sale, garden tours, live music, make-n-take crafts for kids, and much more. This month, you can join in for educational bird walks led by interpretive naturalists every Saturday and Sunday morning.

COOP

The multifunctional building is an educational tool in itself as well. It serves as a showcase of green building techniques, and it’s a net-zero energy user thanks to high efficiency rooftop photovoltaic power panels. Cisterns store storm water for restrooms and for irrigation of native plants, and the building was constructed with materials including adobe, renewable straw and bamboo, certified sustainable wood, and recycled components. Built on a plot of previously bare dirt, it also creates new habitat for wildlife.

peckers, beavers, herons, turtles, lizards, muskrats, and bald eagles. The 0.8 mile Bosque Loop Trail provides an easy walk through the bosque with a spur to the river, and the 1 mile Riverwalk Trail runs along the river, through open meadows, and into some beautiful heavily wooded areas of the bosque.

Old A irport Ave.

pened in 2011, the Rio Grande Nature Center’s education building offers 5,500 square feet of space to meet the needs of the over 130,000 children and adults who visit the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park each year. The Center houses exhibits describing the bosque and its plants, geology and animals. The Discovery Room offers hands-on exhibits for children, and the Observation Room overlooks a three-acre pond offering up-close encounters with ducks, geese, turtles, and dragonflies. It also houses a reference library with publications on birds, herbs, trees, and other aspects of the area’s natural history. At the front desk, you can borrow trail guides, binoculars, and field guides.

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 Montañita Co-op Supermarket to provide information on La Montañita 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.


FARMING AND GARDENING

March 2016 4

THE FUTURE OF FOOD : TOWARD A

We want to grow our food in ways that RESTORE CIMATE STABILITY and REGENERATE

REGENERATIVE

SOIL, HEALTH AND ECONOMIES

REVOLUTION

ANDRÉ LEU AND RONNIE CUMMINS n October 2015, the website PoliticoPro reported that the US Secretary of Agriculture wants “farmers and agricultural interests to come up with a single definition of sustainability in order to avoid confusing the public with various meanings of the term in food and production methods." We agree with Secretary Tom Vilsack that the word “sustainability” is meaningless to consumers and the public.

diversity in the biological community, fewer annuals and more perennials, and greater reliance on internal rather than external resources. Regenerative organic agriculture is aligned with forms of agroecology practiced by farmers concerned with food sovereignty the world over.

BY

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But rather than come up with one definition for the word “sustainable” as it refers to food and food production methods, we suggest doing away with the word entirely. In its place, as a way of helping food consumers make conscious, informed decisions, we suggest dividing global food and farming into two categories: regenerative and degenerative.

‘Sustainable’ is that All We Want? The dictionary defines “sustainable” as: "able to be used without being completely used up or destroyed; involving methods that do not completely use up or destroy natural resources; able to last or continue for a long time." In other words, sustainability is about maintaining systems without degrading them. And it is about keeping things much the same without progressing. Industrial agriculture today, with its factory farms, waste lagoons, antibiotics and growth hormones, GMOs, toxic pesticides and prolific use of synthetic fertilizers, doesn’t come close to “not using up or destroying natural resources.” And even if it did, is that all we want, or need, to achieve? Or do we want to grow our food in ways that restore climate stability and regenerate soil, health and economies rather than merely maintain the status quo?

Greenwashing and the Labeling Game Corporations love to brand themselves, and label their products, as “sustainable.” The hope is that consumers will view “sustainable” products as superior to mere “conventional” products, or better yet, equate the word “sustainable” with “organic.” But when a widely discredited company like Monsanto co-opts the word “sustainable,” the word loses all meaning for consumers. It is the same with the certified “sustainability” labels promoted by corporations such as Cargill, Heinz Benelux, Mars, Nestlé, Unilever and Cadbury.

COZY GARDENS THE

PATIO

A “sustainability” label may mean the production methods behind a product inflicted somewhat less damage on the environment. But it doesn’t mean the product will cause less damage to human health. Numerous published scientific studies link exposure to the smallest amounts of “approved” pesticides to cancers, birth defects, endocrine disruption, reproductive problems, developmental neurotoxicity, ADHD, autism, obesity, type 2 diabetes, reproductive problems, immune system damage, epigenetic mutations, kidney, liver and heart disease and numerous other non-communicable diseases that are currently in epidemic proportions. A global ‘Regeneration Revolution’ is under way. In the 1970s, Robert Rodale, son of American organic pioneer J.I. Rodale, coined the term “regenerative organic agriculture” to distinguish a kind of farming that goes beyond simply “sustainable.” According to the Rodale Institute: Regenerative organic agriculture improves the resources it uses, rather than destroying or depleting them. It is a holistic systems approach to agriculture that encourages continual on-farm innovation for environmental, social, economic and spiritual well-being. Regenerative organic agriculture “takes advantage of the natural tendencies of ecosystems to regenerate when disturbed. In that primary sense it is distinguished from other types of agriculture that either oppose or ignore the value of those natural tendencies.” Regenerative organic agriculture is marked by tendencies towards closed nutrient loops, greater

DE LAVEAGA t about this time every year, the chilled, barren landscape begins to penetrate my bones. Like countless cultivators before me, I develop an overwhelming longing for warmth, for sunshine, and for green. The chile ristras, pine boughs, and mistletoe of the holidays have disappeared; growing things now wait below the cold windswept ground.

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My eyes scan the stoic mountains and then settle on our tiny patio of possibility. The winter-worn evergreen shrubs shrug their shoulders at the leafless mulberry and the twisted skeleton of honeysuckle. Three downtrodden planter barrels frame the boundary between us and the world beyond. Our potential garden area isn't much larger than an average living room.

LA MONTAÑITA FUND GROW THE REGIONAL FOOD SYSTEM GRASSROOTS INVESTING AND

LOAN PROGRAM

FUND! • 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 robins@lamontanita.coop.

The number one driver behind rising sales of organic foods is consumer concern about health, especially pesticides, growth hormones and GMOs. But as scientists issue increasingly dire warnings about the climate, and people throughout the world connect the dots between industrial agriculture and global warming, there is a growing contingent of farmers and consumers who want to do more. An increasing number of farmers want to grow food and raise animals using organic and regenerative farming and grazing practices that are not only better for human health, but that also cool the planet, feed the world, heal the soil, foster food sovereignty and strengthen communities. And consumers want to purchase those products, knowing that their production generated healing, not harm. It’s a Regeneration Revolution. And it goes well beyond “sustainability.” ANDRÉ LEU Is president of IFOAM Organics International, and on the steering committee of Regeneration International (RI). RONNIE CUMMINS is international director of the Organic Consumers Association (OCA), and on the steering committee of RI. Go to www.organicconsumers.org for more information on RI, to join OCA or make a donation.

POSSIBILITIES ON

BY KATIE

LaM

We opened this piece by stating that we agree with Vilsack—the word “sustainability,” in the context of food and food production, has led to consumer confusion. A “common understanding” of what sustainability is might better serve the interests of Monsanto and the agribusiness corporations—but it will do little to serve the interests of small farmers and consumers.

In the past, gardening was a luxury we relished. The children were little and afternoons were ours to spend at home, barefoot among dainty strawberries in their raised bed, burgeoning lettuces and winter greens in the terraces, and parsley, dill, and cilantro strewn among the poppies. This gardening season, things are different. First, time is short; we are all in school most of the day, including mom— the chief gardener. Second, there isn't a lot to work with besides the three empty tomato barrels and the dusty ground. Nonetheless, promises of cultivated earth beckon like Canadian geese calling to each other overhead on their way north. Fortunately for us, growing food to complement our dinner table doesn't require a ton of space. According to container gardening experts like Mel Bartholomew, Maggie Stuckey, and Rose Marie Nichols McGee, we need only enough space for a small garden box to grow a surprising amount of food. Exactly how much food depends on which plants you choose, eating habits and productivity, and of course your household size. This season, we're going to try the container garden approach. We'll start by building two raised containers, 3' by 6' each. Because a little height will make things easy when we come home from a long day, 19 inches should suffice. These boxes will be filled with the Square-Foot-Gardening Foundation's 3 part recipe of vermiculite, compost, and sphagnum peat moss. Starting with a layer of gravel at the bottom is a proven method of providing drainage to the bed as well as stopping burrowing visitors. Other great tactics include using a weed cloth or chicken wire as your base layer barrier, if drainage won't be an issue. We've been working on the compost already! In the winter, composting slows down. But on warmer days, I've been successful at turning the heap in our converted tomato barrel. When the time is right for planting, the vermiculite and peat moss can be added. As for the crops, the spring agenda is a plethora of greens: chard, kale, lettuces, garlic, and onions. When

A SMALL garden container can grow a surprising amount

OF FOOD June draws near, we'll start a pico de gallo garden. Cherry tomatoes, jalapeños, cilantro, bell peppers, and my favorite, an Armenian cucumber. If we can manage a trellis or two, we'll also try pole beans and snap peas. All on a dime-sized budget and a parlor-sized patio. To be continued! For further reading, try Square Foot Gardening, by Mel Bartholomew. Emmaus, PA: Rodale, 1981. His foundations website is very informative at: www.squarefootgardening.org/square-footgardening-method Also see The Bountiful Container: A Container Garden of Vegetables, Herbs, Fruits and Edible Flowers, by McGee, Rose Marie Nichols., and Maggie Stuckey. New York: Workman Pub., 2002. Print. Additionally, there are a number of garden bloggers out there. I love “Best Vegetables To Grow in a Container or Pot,” at: http://happyhouseandgarden.com/best-vegetablesto-grow-in-a-container-or-pot/


FARMING AND GARDENING

GROWING THE POWER OF

TOPSOIL

UNCONVENTIONAL

THINKING

I

Nearly two billion tons of topsoil erode annually from American farms and ranches, primarily due to poor agricultural practices. Most of this soil washes into creeks and lakes and out to sea. Actually, two billion tons is a big improvement. Twenty-five years ago the amount of topsoil lost annually to erosion was 40 percent higher. The difference is the adoption of a suite of agricultural practices—including the use of cover crops, no-till farming, and regenerative grazing—that reduce the erosive power of rain and wind. The goal of these practices is the conservation of topsoil for the future. In other words, if soil is a nonrenewable resource, the best we can do is slow down its rate of loss. But what if topsoil was also a renewable resource? What if a farmer or rancher could create an inch of biologically active topsoil in a decade? According to conventional thinking, that can’t be done—not with chemical-based agriculture, anyway. The Power of Unconventional Thinking Fortunately, unconventional thinkers have had other ideas. In Charles Darwin's final book, published shortly before his death in 1882, the great scientist focused his research on the lowly earthworm and the

THE JOYS OF BY AMYLEE UDELL

It wasn’t just intellectual curiosity at work, however. When a prolonged drought hit Australia, contributing to a devastating fire on Yeomans’s farm that killed his brother-in-law, he vowed to drought-proof his property—and by extension, all of Australia! Explaining his goals, Yeomans wrote, “The landman’s job is not so much to conserve soil as it is to develop soil and to make it more fertile than it ever was.” On a visit to Texas, he watched a chisel plow in action and realized that with modifications this plow was ideal for “ripping” keyline contours across farms and ranches. A chisel plow cuts a narrow, deep furrow (8 to 12 inches) without turning over the dirt and is used primarily to loosen rocky or compacted soils. Yeomans recognized its potential for encouraging water and oxygen infiltration in the soil—keys to “revving up” biological life underground.

Excerpted and reprinted from Two Percent Solutions for the Planet: 50 Low Cost, Low-Tech, NatureBased Practices for Combating Hunger, Drought, and Climate Change. BY COURTNEY WHITE s topsoil a renewable resource or a nonrenewable resource, especially in dry or degraded landscapes? The answer to this question is important because we’re losing topsoil every day—lots of it. Geologically, topsoil is produced by the physical and chemical weathering of rock as plant roots widen cracks made by freezing and thawing action and carbonic acid in raindrops breaks down the pieces into sand, silt, and clay particles (as does the grinding work of glaciers). Just add organic matter—carbon—and voila, topsoil! However, it may take as long as a thousand years to build an inch of biologically active soil through this process, which makes topsoil a nonrenewable resource on human time scales.

March 2016 5

role it played in the mystery of soil formation. By conducting a variety of experiments in his backyard over many years, Darwin discovered that topsoil can be expanded (deepened) in only a matter of years, largely as a result of the digestive work of earthworms. This was big news at the time. The idea that soil was biologically alive with critters transforming inert subsoil into rich topsoil by eating and pooping was rather revolutionary. Of course, Darwin had the advantage of living in England, where moist conditions can speed up biological processes. What about drier parts of the world? Sixty years later, the answer came from another unconventional thinker. P. A. Yeomans, a former Fuller Brush salesman in Australia, took a correspondence course in geology and became a mining engineer. In his new job, he carefully studied the way water moved across the land, especially gravity flow. After World War II Yeomans traded mining for agriculture and purchased a farm in New South Wales, where he began to test his unconventional ideas of water and land management, including the “keypoint” concept. A keypoint is the precise spot in a small valley or drainage where water slows down enough to be directed underground via a narrow “Keyline” ditch dug on the point’s contour line. His objective was to get as much water into the soil as possible, thus recharging the plant life, especially if the soil was degraded or compacted.

MULCH

His second innovation was what scientists today call “resilience thinking”—how to bounce back ecologically or economically from a surprise or shock. Yeomans developed a whole-systems approach to his farm, insisting that close attention be paid to all parts of the land under management, including proper grazing by livestock. Goal setting, design, testing, and retesting needed to be incorporated into every farming enterprise, he said, and appropriate scales needed to be respected. The primary ecological objective of all this planning was to increase the regenerative capacity of the land, and to do that people needed be treated as an integral part of any management system. Although Yeomans probably didn’t use the word resilience to describe his goals, it certainly bouncing back describes his intentions.

RESILIENCE THINKING: ecologically or economically

So, do Yeoman’s innovations actually build topsoil? The Yeomans Plow is a good tool for fixing a damaged water cycle, Owen Hablutzel, an expert in whole systems farming and ranching told me, by preparing compacted soil for rain. One or two 8-inch-deep rips by the plow below the labile (top) layer of soil jumps up the level of biological activity. The chances are good, he said, that the plow can increase soil carbon as a result. The Keyline strategy works well in dry country—perhaps especially in arid lands. That’s because every drop of water is precious, particularly in a drought, and any method that can get more of the wet stuff to the roots of plants, the better.

FROM SURPRISE OR SHOCK

Despite these successes, however, Yeomans’s ideas remain unconventional for many in agriculture. Nevertheless, in this era of rising environmental and social stress, we need more unconventional thinking— and quickly! To learn more: see: www.keyline.com.au, view a lecture by Owen Hablutzel on resilience science and Keyline design at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3twLVn7nss. For more great essays on regenerating planetary healthy look for Two Percent for the Planet by Courtney White at your favorite local bookstore or contact Chelsea Green Publishing at www.chelseagreen.com. Reprinted with permission from the author and Chelsea Green Publishing.

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very year about this time I am faced with a somewhat messy garden and yard, plus a few decisions: Do I want to do this again? How much do I want to do? How much should I spend? Should I try something new or stick with the tried and true? How important is a perfect yard to me? What is good enough? As with most things in my life, simple maintenance is tantamount to success. But before the maintenance comes that initial investment in getting started! I have come to realize that for me, it's realistic to make only one big backyard change or push each year. Otherwise, I get bogged down and make no progress. So I've come to accept small steps as success.

But I needed motivation for this year's yard and garden! So I sat down to talk with Jill Brown, a landscape architect who provides landscape coaching to homeowners and creator of Landscape Design Made Easy, an online design course and workbook. What I like about Jill's approach is that she strives to make landscaping attainable for everyone. Jill was generous enough to share her top 10 steps to transform your yard. One of the steps is to ADD MULCH: mulch might be the most important element for your garden. "Clients frequently come to me asking about eliminating weeds and mulch is one of the main defenses against weeds. Mulch also protects your plants from drying out quickly. There are two types of mulch and both are effective in helping with these struggles," says Jill. I never thought of gravel and stone as a mulch, but apparently they can be very effective. Stone mulch is used to cover your yard areas and pathways. Crusher fines are best for a tidy look and if compacted properly, make a great weed barrier. Pea gravel gives a modern look but isn't as effective against weeds, according to Jill. Crushed gravel varies in size and is perfect for areas with water flow, such as under your canale drains, as well as driveways.

THE CO-OP HAS QUALITY

SEEDS Organic mulch can be used for yards as well as your garden areas. While organic mulch such as leaves and bark can break down and feed your soil, it does need regular replacement. Stone mulch lasts much longer. Cost, of course, is another factor. Stone costs more, but lasts much longer. It also increases the heat around your warmer areas on hot days. Look for organic mulch in your own backyard. It keeps your garden weed-free and keeps your soil moist. Consider your grass clippings and leaves from the fall. You can supplement with shredded bark, pine needles, additional shredded leaves and straw mulch, all of which are affordable to buy and even free. You can call tree companies and ask to be put on their waiting list for a pile of tree clippings. Soilutions has several mulch options which you can pick up or have delivered. Take your vehicle out to the East Mountain Transfer Station and load up mulch for free. I asked Jill what she thought was the best mulch type for retaining water in a garden bed. Soilutions Forest Floor Mulch was the answer. My favorite take-away from Jill is to keep it simple. "Just get that dirt covered with somethings. Whatever you use will only help and improve your soil and your yard or garden." I like it. A simple step I can take that will reap multiple and long-lasting benefits. For more landscaping tips from Jill please visit: www.mylandscapecoach.com/coop

GET

GARDENING! • • • • •

OPEN POLLINATED ORGANIC HEIRLOOM GMO FREE UNCOATED GOOD FOR

ARID

CONDITIONS SEE PAGE 7 FOR DETAILS


CO-OP NEWS

March 2016 6

TOWARD A DIVERSITY OF COOPERATIVES

CAPITALIZING

COMMUNITY WEALTH EMPOWERING WORKERS

THROUGH OWNERSHIP EDITOR’S NOTE: In an effort to grow the community ownership economy in our region, we are pleased to welcome Nathan Hixson and the Local Enterprise Assistance Fund (LEAF) to the pages of our Co-op Connection News. This new feature grew out of conversations on how the La Montañita Fund can work with LEAF, increase our collective impact and grow community wealth through cooperation. BY NATHAN HIXSON, LEAF ocal Enterprise Assistance Fund (LEAF) is a national community development fund with a focus on cooperatives. Over the past 30 years, the nonprofit fund has invested and leveraged $98 million in food co-ops, worker co-op business, and resident-owned housing co-ops.

L

In spring of 2007, three taxi drivers in San Francisco were frustrated with their independent contractor status. They decided to join together to form an environmentally friendly taxi service, run entirely with hybrid vehicles. In contrast to venture capital-backed behemoths like Uber, these drivers opted for the worker cooperative model where every driver has a say in the direction of the company and a share of the profits. Thus San Francisco Green Cab was born. Seeking financing to purchase more hybrids and expand their operations, they reached out to LEAF for a loan. Over the past nine years, LEAF has lent more than a quarter-million dollars to the start-up, helping it grow to 20 workerowners. Well into the future, this successful, carbon-neutral business will operate democratically because drivers, not investors, manage the business and reap the profits. Worker co-ops are natural cousins with food co-ops! Both combine the power of people collectively owning and governing a business with the economic driver of small business. Plus, worker co-ops share many of the same values as consumer cooperatives like La Montañita. Both make decisions for the benefit of

their members and have socially conscious motives that go beyond profit maximization. Perhaps most importantly of all, both worker and consumer coops share the philosophy of cooperation, often banding together and sharing resources and best practices with other cooperatives in the same industry. Both models empower members to own and be part of something larger than themselves.

So what exactly is a

WORKER COOPERATIVE and why is it important? In basic terms, it is a business OWNED and GOVERNED by and for the BENEFIT of its

WORKER-OWNERS So what exactly is a worker cooperative, and why is it important? In basic terms, a worker co-op is a business owned and governed by and for the benefit of its worker-owners. The structure is similar to that of a consumer food co-op, except that instead of consumer-owners (e.g. a member of a food co-op), there are worker-owners. This means that the worker-owners elect a board and, when a profit is realized, the members receive a portion of the profits. Workersowners buy a membership share that entitles them to one vote in the co-op. The worker co-op model originated in the early 19th century in Europe, where it currently boasts several massive successes, most notably the Mondragon Corporation in Spain, which employs more than

700,00 workers and earns over $16 billion in annual revenue. While the model is still somewhat unknown in the United States, there are several examples that illustrate its growth potential. Cooperative Home Care Associates, for example, has 2,500 worker-owners who provide home care services in New York City. The worker co-op model is also flexible and has shown to be successful in many industries, from Alvarado St. Bakery’s wholesale operation in California to Black Star Co-op’s brewpub in Austin, Texas to Isthmus Engineering, in Madison, WI. These co-ops share a dedication to the wellbeing of their worker-owners because the workers themselves own and are responsible for the business! As a lender, LEAF is committed to helping consumer and worker cooperatives achieve their goals and we’re delighted that La Montañita has asked us to bring you more stories and information about the world of worker co-ops in future newsletters. Like you, we see the multiplicity of benefits cooperatives bring to their communities and we look forward to hearing your thoughts. For more stories about the world of worker cooperatives and cooperative lending, look for us in next month’s issue! If you can’t wait, check out LEAF’s website—leaffund.org; our sister organization, the ICA Group—ica-group.org; and a great hub for all things cooperative, the Democracy at Work Institute— institute.coop. Please feel free to send your ideas, questions or comments to leaf@leafffund.org.


CO-OP NEWS

March 2016 7

THE JOURNEY CREATE POSITIVE IMPACT AND VALUE

BY DENNIS HANLEY, GENERAL MANAGER s it always does, time is moving at a rapid pace! It is hard for me to believe that as I write this, I have already been at La Montañita for seven weeks! We have begun several projects to positively impact our owners' shopping experience and the larger community.

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Our journey is to grow the quality of our products and customer service, providing you, our owners and shoppers, with greater value. Many of you have already noticed our experiments with bigger buys and better prices on some of your favorite produce items. You responded most positively and these products are flying out the door. In addition to an increase in sales, the many calls and emails we are getting let us know we are on the right track. Yahoo!!! Watch for more exciting sales and promotions to come in a variety of departments. Another big change is our organizational mindset. We are working hard at the Support Office. Did

you notice we changed the name from Admin Office to Support Office? More important than the actual name is the idea and behavior it represents. It is our Support Office mission to serve, in the most dedicated way, the operational teams at each store so that each staff member and our stores overall can reach their full potential. In the coming weeks, we have many new initiatives that will be rolled out in merchandising, marketing and human resources. In the short time of seven weeks, one thing is for certain; I have been so very impressed with the heart and enthusiasm of the La Montañita team in the stores and the Support Office.

March Calendar

of Events 3/15 Community Education Series: Immanuel Presbyterian Church, 5:30pm 3/15 BOD Meeting Immanuel Presbyterian Church, 6:45pm 3/21 Member Engagement Meeting Co-op Support Office, 5:30pm 4/24 26th Annual Co-op EarthFest! Behind the Nob Hill Co-op, see page 1

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

IS YOUR CELL PHONE

We will continue to focus on growing our cooperative economy to positively impact lives in the neighborhoods we serve and the larger New Mexican community as well as creating greater return and more value for our member-owners!

MAKING YOU

SICK?

Santa Fe Co-op Community Room: FREE Wi-Fi technology is here to stay. Learn about patented products that help neutralize the effects of electromagnetic radiation and simple ways to decrease exposure. MARCH 913 West Alameda, Santa Fe Info: 505-780-8283

As always I love hearing your input and feedback. You can reach me at 505-217-2028 or dennis.hanley@lamontanita.coop.

29 6–7:30PM

GREAT LOCAL, ORGANIC AND WILD SEEDS!

GET GROWING

domain seed for home farmers and gardeners, organic growers and other bulk purchasers.

BY ROBIN SEYDEL ll Co-op stores have a great selection of local, organic and wild crafted seeds. Check out the following seed companies for your gardening needs.

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Family Farmers Seed Co-op: We are pleased to be offering these certified organic arid lands seeds. The Family Farmers Seed Cooperative (FFSC) is a farmerowned and operated cooperative with members in seven western states. Their mission is to produce high quality certified organic, open-pollinated (OP) and public

Their member farms are some of the best and most experienced certified organic seed growers in North America. They uphold high quality standards to ensure the viability and rigor of their seeds. Their seed allows farmers to save seed that will breed true, giving farmers access and control of their seed supply. For more information go to www.organicseedcoop.com. Botanical Interests: Since 1995 Botanical Interests Seed Company has been supplying gardeners with the highest quality seed in the most beautiful and informa-

tive seed packets. They offer over 600 high-quality varieties, including many heirloom seed varieties and a large selection of USDA Certified Organic seed. They have signed the no-GMO Safe Seed pledge. Native Ideals Seeds: Native Ideals Seed Farm grows high quality, native wildflower seeds that save water, conserve pollinators, and improve wildlife habitat. They grow and harvest all their seeds on their farm in western Montana in fields established with seed collected from healthy, wild Montana plant populations. By focusing on xeric species, their products are becoming more relevant as water becomes increasingly scarce and drought conditions continue.

CO-OP DISTRIBUTION CENTER GROWING THE LOCAL ECONOMY ONE FARMER, ONE BUSINESS AT A TIME SERVING LOCAL PRODUCERS AND BUSINESSES THESE BUSINESSES ARE VALUED CUSTOMERS OF THE

CO-OP DISTRIBUTION CENTER Please support these local businesses and enjoy the best that our community has to offer. When you are there, thank them for supporting the local food system by purchasing quality products from La Montañita Co-op's Distribution Center.

CENTRAL NEW MEXICO

La Posada Dining Hall Address: Campus Drive, UNM Campus Website: www.dineoncampus.com/unm Specialties: Pastas, panini station, Asian cuisine, vegetarian dishes What they buy from the CDC: F&A cheese, Akin pinto beans, Adams non-GMO canola oil, nest fresh eggs, Organic Valley heavy whipping cream They say: We serve fresh, delicious and nutritious food made from scratch. All you care to eat, open 24/7. We feed and educate. La Posada is open to the public. UNM Sustainability Intern Helene Tambet says: “My first three weeks working on sustainability at UNM Food have surprised me very positively. The supplies Chartwells uses—from hormone-free milk to local chile-— and the practices our kitchen implements—from efficient peeling of vegetables to composting—are all something one wouldn't expect from a college dining hall. The supportive environment for sustainability is exciting and gives hope for the future. I am thrilled to have been able to launch food donations to St Martin's Hospitality Center, zero food waste events and an awareness campaign about sustainable food.”

NORTHERN NEW MEXICO

Radish & Rye Address: 548 Agua Fria, Santa Fe, NM Phone: 505-930-5325 Website: www.radishandrye.com When Started: June 2015 Specialities: Seasonal menus created around sustainably and locally sourced ingredients. Our food compliments our bar, New Mexico’s largest bourbon program, and the state’s largest selection of half-bottle wine. What We Buy from the CDC: Kyzer Farm pork, Sweet Grass beef, Mary’s Poultry Products, Old Windmill Dairy, Rasband Dairy, Tucumari cheese, eggs, produce, locally milled flours, Tamaya polenta, cold pressed cooking oils They say: La Montañita makes supporting local ranches and farms convenient for our ever growing New Mexico restaurant community. Without La Montañita Co-op we would not be able to source most of the ingredients on our menu.


cleanse inspire strengthen relax rejuvenate * HERBAL HEALTH * detox ***************************

TRADITIONAL HEALING WITH HERBS WORKS IN GENTLE BUT POWERFUL WAYS. THEY HAVE BEEN USED FOR CENTURIES WORLDWIDE TO PROVIDE AND PROMOTE HEALTH IN BODY, MIND AND SPIRIT. THE FOLLOWING HERBS CAN BE GROWN HERE IN NEW MEXICO. YOU CAN USE THEM TO DETOXIFY, STRENGTHEN, SUPPORT, CLEANSE AND REJUVENATE YOUR BODY.

BORAGE

Borage is also known as starflower and bee plant because the blue purplish star-shaped flower attracts bees all summer long. Its natural sedative effects have been used for lifting the spirits. Leaves can be used to reduce a high fever or taken for lung problems, and they are strengthening to the heart. External applications can be used for skin irritations and mucous membranes.

FEVERFEW

This member of the daisy family has been used for centuries to treat arthritis, fevers and reduce inflammation. Feverfew has an impressive track record in treating migraines and chronic headaches, acting to mitigate the pain. It also lowers blood pressure, stimulates the appetite and improves digestion and kidney function.

LEMON BALM

Lemon balm has traditionally been employed against bronchial inflammation, earache, fever, headaches, high blood pressure, toothache and nausea. A perennial herb from the mint family, lemon balm is used for digestive problems and mild pain management. It is believed to have a calming effect and can be used for sleep, anxiety and restlessness.

MILK THISTLE

A remedy for a variety of ailments for the liver, kidney and gall bladder, milk thistle has also been shown to improve liver function and cell regeneration. In addition, it can be used as an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory. It can detoxify synthetic chemicals that find their way into our bodies, from alcohol to heavy metals and radiation.

PENNYROYAL

With its strong mint smell, this herb can be used to repel insects when used in combination with citronella. When consumed internally, Pennyroyal drives out heat and inflammation through the pores of the skin, reducing fevers and helping with circulation. Please consult with health professional before using, as it can be toxic. Do not use if pregnant.

BERGAMOT

The essential oil is a natural antibiotic and disinfectant inhibiting the growth of germs, virus and fungi. Used regularly in bath water and soap, bergamot protects the skin and hair from infections. It also helps fight infections of the colon, intestines, urinary tract and kidneys.

MINT

Consuming mint promotes digestion, soothes an upset stomach, and helps treat nausea or motion sickness. The ancient Egyptians, one of the most medically advanced ancient cultures, cultivated and used peppermint leaves for indigestion. The aroma of mint is also very effective in clearing congestion caused by respiratory infections and disorders.

ROSEMARY

Great for treating headaches, rosemary benefits the entire nervous system. The first record of rosemary’s use as a medicinal herb dates back to ancient times in the Mediterranean region. The herb was thought to have strong effects on memory and in strengthening the mind. The most prominent modern use of rosemary is as an antioxidant.

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WE CARRY A WIDE VARIETY OF HERBS AS OILS, LOTIONS, TINCTURES, TEAS, AROMATHERAPY PRODUCTS, FRESH PRODUCE OR SEEDS! BE SURE TO CONSULT WITH A DOCTOR OR QUALIFIED HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL BEFORE USING ANY HERB AS A MEDICAL TREATMENT. SOME HERBS USED IN TANDEM WITH OTHER HERBS AND MEDICATIONS CAN BE TOXIC, ESPECIALLY IN PREGNANT WOMEN.

THYME

People in ancient Rome used thyme to treat melancholy and added the herb to alcoholic beverages and cheese. The ancient Greeks used it in incense and during Medieval times, the herb was used to infuse the user with vigor and courage. When used internally, thyme helps with respiratory and chest problems. Its antiseptic properties act on fungal infections such as athlete’s foot.

SORREL

A perennial herb having the ability to boost eyesight, strengthen the immune system, improve digestion, build strong bones, lower blood pressure, increase circulation and heighten energy levels. The fresh and dried leaves of sorrel have been used to treat skin conditions. Sorrel is high in vitamin C and other antioxidant compounds. Intake should be regulated due to the high content of oxalic acid.

BURDOCK ROOT

Herbalists have long known that burdock has historically been used as a dietary aid, to treat sore throats, colds, hair loss and dandruff. It also is used as a “blood purifier” tonic to induse sweating and remove toxins from the bloodstream, promote kidney health and help eliminate excess water. Topical usage treats skin problems such as eczema, psoriasis, acne and dry skin.

OREGON GRAPE

The golden yellow root of Oregon grape is sometimes substituted for goldenseal, as the two herbs have similar constituent properties. Oregon grape has been clinically shown to reduce certain skin irritations when used externally. It is also traditionally used as a tonic to stimulate digestion and for its antimicrobial properties. Proper dosage is important.

HYSSOP

The leaves are used primarily for lung ailments, especially for coughs and congestion due to colds or the flu. Hyssop used externally can help treat wounds and promotes rapid tissue repair. Hyssop has been used for millennia as a holy herb, to purify sacred spaces and hung in homes for “protection.” It has a mint-like taste that makes it a delicious addition to salads, when used in small quantities.

VALERIAN

Valerian is well known for its sedative qualities and its ability to relax the central nervous system. It has been used as a sleeping aid for hundreds of years, especially when there is difficulty in falling asleep due to nervousness. It is calming without exerting too sedative an effect, although some people do experience a morning hangover.

SAVORY

Savory has many minerals and vitamins, making it an excellent herb to use for building resistance to illness. The shoots and leaves of this herb are a rich source of zinc, magnesium, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and selenium, vitamin A, vitamin B-complex, vitamin C, pyridoxine, niacin and thiamin. Savory tea is considered a powerful antiseptic, helping liver and kidney function.

CHAMOMILE

This widely consumed herb is mostly used to calm restlessness, nervous stomach and insomnia. Used externally, chamomile can soothe achy muscles and joints. Chamomile has been used for centuries in teas as a mild, relaxing sleep aid, a treatment for fevers, colds and stomach ailments and as an anti-inflammatory. It can be used internally and externally.

MULLEIN

The leaves are helpful in treating lymphatic and lung congestion and diarrhea. The essential oil made from the flowers is considered one of the best remedies for earaches. The flowering stem was dried by the Greeks and Romans and dipped in tallow to be used as a lamp wick or torch to ward off evil spirits and witches, though mullein was certainly not uncommon in a witch’s herbal garden.

NETTLE

The nettle plant has been used for centuries to treat allergy symptoms, particularly hay fever and asthma. The aerial parts of nettle contain biologically active compounds that reduce inflammation, helping arthritis pain. It supports the lungs, kidneys, bladder and blood. Nettle is rich in iron, silicon and potassium.

DANDELION

Dandelion assists the liver by clearing obstructions and stimulating it to detoxify poisons. But liver function isn’t the only use of this nutritious plant—it is also used to treat infections, swelling, water retention, and gallbladder problems. Studies have shown that dandelion is calming to the stomach and relieves intestinal pain. The leaf promotes healthy kidney function.

COMFREY

Comfrey has a healing effect on every organ and may be used both internally and externally. Comfrey aids in cell proliferation thus healing wounds and broken bones quickly. It also promotes healthy digestion. This herb is extremely versatile and a small piece of the root will reproduce itself in any shady, moist area.

LAVENDER

It is known for its scent but can be used as an antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic and analgesic. Lavender’s soothing natural scent calms coughs and colds, and protects against airborne viruses and bacteria. Used in bath water or cool mist inhalers, lavender can provide pain relief and treat insomnia and circulation problems.

OREGANO

A common household spice that also contains antibacterial, antiparasitic, antiseptic and antiviral properties. Oregano is a nutrient-dense immune-boosting spice packed with antioxidants. Oregano has also been shown to be a beneficial treatment for infections, including yeast infections. Studies have shown that oregano directly attacks microbes and inhibits the growth of Candida albicans.

Many thanks to herbwisdom.com, www.mountainroseherbs.com, organicfacts.net, umm.edu/health, The Way of Herbs by Michael Tierra. Product photo by Austin Mye

be local. BUY LOCAL.

OWNER read the newsletter VOLUNTEER support sustainable become an

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JOIN KNOW YOUR FARMER BE INDEPENDENT get a friend to

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VOTE. be inspired. learn about natural healing eat well. feel better.

BUY organic TALK ABOUT US exercise your democratic control

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SPRING GREENS

March 2016 10

FLAVORS OF SPRING DANDELION GREENS WITH WALNUTS AND APPLES Serves 6 / Time: 20 minutes Dandelion greens are a super powerhouse of nutrients, high in vitamin K, vitamin A, and many antioxidants. They have a strong flavor that is well balanced in this salad with the sweetness from the apples and the sharp tang of the apple cider vinegar dressing. Salad 1/2 bunch of raw dandelion greens, chopped 3 large granny smith apples, chopped 3 celery stalks, diced 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped 1/2 red onion, diced Dressing 1/2 cup plain yogurt Scant 1/4 cup raw apple cider vinegar 1 T Dijon mustard 2 T honey, to taste Combine all of the salad ingredients and toss. In a separate bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients and toss with the salad. NUTRITION INFORMATION: CALORIES 168; TOTAL FAT 7G; SATURATED FAT 1G; CHOLESTEROL 3MG; SODIUM 34MG; TOTAL CARBOHYDRATE 26G; DIETARY FIBER 4G; SUGARS 19G; PROTEIN 3G SAVORY GREENS FRITTERS Makes 12 3-inch fritters / Time: 40 minutes 1/2 bunch of greens, diced (dandelion greens, kale, or chard) 2 garlic cloves, minced 1/2 onion, minced 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped 2 tsp turmeric powder 4 eggs, whisked

1/2 cup flour (gluten-free flour works fine) 1/4 cup milk or water 1/4 cup Romano cheese, grated (optional) Optional garnish: chopped nuts and plain yogurt A bit like a variation on a warm salad, these fritters cook quickly, leaving the greens fresh tasting and crisp. You can experiment with adding various other veggies of your choice to this basic recipe, like grated carrot, diced mushrooms or sweet peppers as well as herbs, like oregano, thyme or tarragon. Combine all of the ingredients to make a loose, pancakelike batter. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Place 1/4 cupful of batter onto the skillet and gently pat down the middle of the fritter with the flat bottom of the measuring cup. When the underside edges of the fritter have turned a light golden brown, flip the fritter over, patting down again with the back of the spatula to flatten and cook until that side is also a light golden brown. Cook the rest of the fritters in the same manner. NUTRITION INFORMATION: CALORIES 119; TOTAL FAT 5G; SATURATED FAT 2G; CHOLESTEROL 129MG; SODIUM 119MG; TOTAL CARBOHYDRATE 11G; DIETARY FIBER 1G; SUGARS 1G; PROTEIN 8G SOUTHWEST KALE SLAW Serves 6 / Time: 30 minutes Salad with a kick! Don’t forget to julienne the stems and include them—they contain as lots of nutrients and add a great crunch. Salad 1 small napa cabbage, shredded 1/2 bunch of purple kale, shredded 1 small red onion, thinly sliced Dressing 3/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice 1 clove garlic, minced 1 T olive oil 1 tsp ground cumin


SPRING GREENS

March 2016 11

2 tsp ground chile (or to taste) Salt and pepper to taste

Taste the soup and adjust for salt and black pepper if needed.

Toss all of the salad and dressing ingredients together in a large bowl. This slaw can be eaten right away or left to marinate overnight before serving, making it a great make-ahead dish.

NUTRITION INFORMATION: CALORIES 165; TOTAL FAT 5G; SATURATED FAT 1G; CHOLESTEROL 0MG; SODIUM 515MG; TOTAL CARBOHYDRATE 28G; DIETARY FIBER 6G; SUGARS 18G; PROTEIN 4G

NUTRITION INFORMATION: CALORIES 74; TOTAL FAT 2G; SATURATED FAT 0G; CHOLESTEROL 0MG; SODIUM 132MG; TOTAL CARBOHYDRATE 13G; DIETARY FIBER 4G; SUGARS 6G; PROTEIN 2G

KALE AND BRUSSELS SPROUTS SALAD Serves: 8 / Time: 15 minutes

ROASTED BEET AND FENNEL SOUP Serves: 6 / Time: 40 minutes active, 1 hour 30 min-utes total You too can cook this amazing antioxidant-rich recipe! Chef Jan Laird of Jan’s on 4th cooking school recently prepared this tasty soup on the 2 KASA Style Show (www.bit.ly/KASArecipe) using ingredients all from your LOCAL La Montañita Co-op. Serve this rustic, French-inspired soup “a la vieille Russie” (hot with a swirl of sour cream or yogurt), paired with simple oven-roasted chicken, duck or potatoes. A sprinkle of savory fresh herbs, like dill, thyme or chives, adds even more character. 2 pounds medium beets, washed, unpeeled and trimmed 2 T olive oil 2 cups diced yellow onion 2 cups diced fennel bulb 2 tsp minced garlic 4 cups vegetable broth 1 cup orange juice Salt and black pepper to taste Preheat the oven to 350°F. Wrap the beets in aluminum foil and place on a sheet pan. Roast them in the oven for about 1 hour or until tender. Allow beets to cool, then peel and cut into small chunks. Set aside. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, fennel and garlic and sauté for 10 minutes until soft. Add the chopped beets and the broth and bring to a simmer. Simmer the soup for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and add the orange juice and a pinch each of salt and black pepper. Using a stick blender or carefully, in batches, in a regular blender, blend the soup until smooth.

2 large bunches of Tuscan kale (about 1 1/2 pounds total), center stem discarded 12 ounces Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 2 T Dijon mustard 2 1/2 T red onion, thinly sliced 1 small garlic clove, finely grated 1/4 tsp salt Freshly ground black pepper 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, or a bit less depending on preference 1/3 cup walnuts 1 cup finely grated Pecorino cheese Lightly blanch Brussels sprouts. Either massage or very lightly blanch kale. Toast walnuts either in a large pan over medium high heat (about 5 minutes) or on a baking sheet in the oven at 375° F (5–10 minutes). Cook until they brown and have a toasty smell. Keep an eye on them regardless of the method you use—they can go from toasted to overcooked very quickly. Combine mustard, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and a pinch of pepper in a small bowl. Stir thoroughly and set aside to let the flavors meld. Thinly slice kale and combine in a large bowl with Brussels sprouts and onions. Slowly whisk olive oil into the mustard and lemon juice mixture, then season dressing to taste with salt and pepper. Add dressing and cheese to the kale mixture, then toss to coat. Coarsely chop walnuts and distribute them over top of the salad. NUTRITION INFORMATION: CALORIES 250; TOTAL FAT 21G; SATURATED FAT 4G; CHOLESTEROL 10MG; SODIUM 424MG; TOTAL CARBOHYDRATE 10G; DIETARY FIBER 3G; SUGARS 2G; PROTEIN 9G


FARMING AND GARDENING

March 2016 12 things. It’s important to plan ahead and not get too ambitious when sheet mulching, because it has a very high organic matter input requirement. Start small, and once you’re comfortable with it you can get more adventurous. The exact technique is more variable than double digging, so do a little research on it to make sure you’re using the best material proportions for your growing goals. Though you can get complicated with it, the gist is pretty straightforward:

BACKYARD PERMACULTURE

TECHNIQUES

IT'S ALL ABOUT THE SOIL

BY JR RIEGEL oil is in these days. It’s been the topic of many a talk at farming and gardening conferences, and it’s been the focus of numerous recent books such as Two Percent Solutions for the Planet by Co-op owner and Board of Directors member Courtney White. It’s also been the subject of a growing body of research, and that’s proven what experts have been saying for a long time: plants are only as good as the soil they grow in. So what can you do to help your soil sing this Spring growing season? Good news—you’ve got options!

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Green mulching, hugelkultur, biochar, and carefully placed swales and sponges

CAN

Start by thoroughly wetting the area because you’ll be adding a layer soon that will stop water from dispersing downward normally. Apply any soil amendments you know your soil needs (lime, ALL HELP greensand, etc.—determined by soil testing). Add a thin layer of manure or another nitrogen-rich material, and then lay down the weed barrier. The idea here is to use a material that will block weeds in the soil from growing up while the organic matter above breaks down. Since you want a temporary but strong barrier, newspaper or cardboard are the best options. Layer on a quarter to a half inch of wet newspaper or a single layer of cardboard with edges overlapped at least 4 inches. Wet newspaper forms a pretty tight barrier, but cardboard needs the overlap to stop weeds from finding a way up. Add another thin layer of manure, then pile on 8 to 12 inches of carbon-rich organic material (old straw, leaves, etc. NOT grass clippings or other nitrogen-rich green material). Top with an inch of finished compost and a layer of straw or mulch to make things pretty. Let it sit.

BUILD SOIL LIFE

There’s always the classic “add compost as you plant” technique to give plants some rich material right around where they come out of the ground. However, even though your plants will like it, this technique doesn’t do that much to enrich the soil. Roots grow far and deep, so the best approach is to enrich all your soil, not just little spots. Spreading compost over everything helps a little, but this technique also lacks efficiency. The compost will eventually work its way into the soil, but the process will be slow with our low rainfall. Until then, plants can’t get much use out of it. To really get the most out of your compost, you’ll want to consider some more involved techniques. Double Digging This practice aerates and loosens soil while introducing new organic matter deep enough that long roots will still reach enriched soil. It also maintains the gradation between topsoil and subsoil, which is very important to microorganisms that function best at a certain depth. It is a bit labor intensive initially, but you’ll end up with rich, deep workable soil while maintaining its microecology. To double dig an area, you’ll want to separate and mark it in evenly-sized rows. Dig the first row to the depth of a shovel head and set the soil aside, taking care to place it rather than drop it to keep its original orientation as much as possible. Then, use a garden fork to loosen the subsoil in the area you just dug. You’ll want to go down to another shovel head of depth, and again make sure you don’t turn the soil over. As you loosen this subsoil, add your compost and work it into this bottom layer. Now move on to the next section, again digging with a shovel to a shovel head’s depth. Use this soil to fill in your original hole, and repeat the aeration and compost addition on the newly exposed section of subsoil. Keep repeating this process of shifting the topsoil and

enriching the subsoil until you’ve finished the last section. Fill the last hole in with the soil you dug from the first, and you’re all done! If you have bindweed or Bermuda grass, this is a great time to remove their roots since you’re already moving through an area systematically. If you don’t get all their roots out, they’ll just grow back, so pull them all and put them in the trash (don’t let them get another chance to grow in your compost).

It takes a while to break down into something you’d call soil, but in the meantime you can still plant. If you’re planting something with deep roots, dig down and make sure you break an opening in your barrier layer. Then dig out an area about three times the size of the root ball you’re planting, fill it with soil, and add your plant. The sheets mulch will continue to decompose and turn into fertile soil around your plant, and it will have some starting soil to take root in.

Sheet Mulching If you keep a compost pile, you’re already on your way toward understanding sheet mulching. Sheet mulching is essentially composting in place rather than composting in one spot and spreading it around later. It’s better to start in Fall so that the area is ready for use in Spring, but you can start any time if you know where you want to plant

There are many other options too, so don’t be afraid to look around and experiment. Green mulching, hugelkultur, biochar, and carefully placed swales and sponges can all help build soil life and carbon content. You don’t have to go big—try double digging or sheet mulching even a small area, and you’ll be taking a big step toward healthier soil and more productive plants.

ITCHY GREEN THUMB

ALTERED GENES ESCAPE

I TOLD YOU

SO...

N O C O N S O L AT I O N

BRETT BAKKER DEAR MONSANTO AND USDA, We hate to say “I told you so” but… Wait. Scratch that. Despite the habit of manners, no one really dislikes saying “I told you so”. There’s a warm and fuzzy feeling that—nope scratch that too. There’s a smug feeling that we all get when we say those words. But when the news is bad, being smug is no consolation. BY

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f you’ve spent any time at all in farm country (which could be the backroads of small NM towns like, say, Belen and not just our big ag centers like Las Cruces or Portales) you may have noticed alfalfa growing as a weed: feral on roadsides or persistent in fallow fields where no alfalfa has been planted in years. Alfalfa is hardy and adapts well to disturbed areas where human activity has churned up the soil a bit. Alfalfa seed is tiny and can spread by human error (spills) or bird and animal consumption. One alfalfa plant is capable of producing over 5,000 seeds so the potential for weediness is inherent although it is not classified as a noxious weed. A little weedy alfalfa is good. It is a legume that fixes nitrogen in the soil, provides plentiful nectar and pollen for bees and is a good source of nutrient for herbivores. What’s not to love? With funds and support from the USDA Biotechnology Risk Assessment Grant Program, researchers found that out of four hundred and four populations of roadside feral alfalfa studied in California, Idaho and Washington state, twenty-seven percent contained transgenes: Roundup-Ready GMO traits. I don’t really care that the highway department

can’t kill off a few wild alfalfa plants but let’s let the research speak for itself: “…our study is the first to confirm that alfalfa has joined oilseed rape (canola) as a genetically engineered crop that has dispersed beyond cultivated fields… Our data suggest that these populations are self-sustaining and that gene flow (cross pollination) is likely.” So, USDA researchers are saying that, yup, genetically engineered crops are escaping to the wild and there is indeed feral GMO cross pollination with nonGMO alfalfa. This is a far cry from USDA’s insistence that GMO and non-GMO can coexist with controlled management practices: keep the fields separate, don’t mess around and spill your seed and, for good measure, eradicate all weedy populations of alfalfa. Let’s look at these one at a time. Keep bee-pollinated fields separate? Let’s see… how far does a bee forage for nectar? Generally two miles but they have been known to go as far as seven. OK, simple! If you want to grow non-GMO alfalfa, make sure your farm is over seven miles from anyone who is

planting or will ever want to plant GMO alfalfa. Easy! Next! How big is an alfalfa seed? About 1-2 millimeters, more or less the size of a pencil tip. OK, how could any of those seeds get caught in farm machinery, pant cuffs, animal fur, or fall “into the cracks”? Naw, won’t happen. Next! Eradicate all weedy populations of alfalfa? Ok, form a feral-alfalfa strike force to patrol every possible place that alfalfa seed might end up, from farm country, to the More research yard of seed dealer to the parking means more time lot of your local grocers that for GMO GENES to carry alfalfa seeds for sprouts. SPREAD TO Since alfalfa roots typically delve WHERE about fifteen feet deep but have THEY ARE NOT been known to grow as far as twenty-five or more, digging is WANTED out the question so let’s spray them with Roundup! Oh wait. That won’t work since some of these plants are resistant to it so let’s try a stronger herbicide like 2,4-D which is the more toxic herbicide we’re moving towards anyway since Roundup-resistance is growing. Alright! Got that covered. No problem. Sigh!!! What never fails to astound me is that it takes a study worth who knows how many thousands of dollars to validate what antiGMO forces have been saying for years. It’s just a matter of biological common sense. How could anyone especially the so-called experts like USDA personnel (at least some of whom must have been farmers at some time) even entertain the notion that controlling the spread of genes (any genes, GMO or non-GMO) is possible? Heck, even non-GMO crops can spread their genes into GMO crops. Gene flow: we can mess with it, we can even occasionally block it but this is how nature works. Of course, the results of just one research project is not considered adequate so there will be calls for more studies, more funding and... more delays which will mean more time for more GMO genes to spread where they are not wanted. I’m not much of a conspiracy guy but sometimes wonder if stalling and allowing time for the GMO genie to fully and irreversibly escape is not part of the strategy. Who knows but I’m ready to say I told you so!


FARMING NEWS

March 2016 13

SO YOU THINK YOU WANT TO BE

GLUTEN-FREE BY TWO MOONS AND TOMAS KUJAT luten-free chips, dips, soups, stews, breads, croutons, pretzels, beer, cheese sticks, dog food, and yes, even pineapples and greeting cards have been labeled thusly. Such labels are being put on products that have never contained gluten. Market Research firm Nielsen estimated sales of products with a gluten-free label have doubled in the past 4 years.

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Gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley has been blamed for everything from arthritis and asthma to multiple sclerosis and schizophrenia. “No matter what kind of sickness that has taken hold of you, let’s blame gluten,” marvels April Peveteaux, author of Gluten is my Bitch. Until about 10 years ago, 99% of the population barely gave gluten a thought. Then along came books by neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter, Grain Brain... and cardiologist Dr. William Davis, Wheat Belly. Davis claimed that “the bread today is not the same bread that was on the table (over) 50 years ago.” And we should avoid it. When white bread started appearing on grocery store shelves in more abundant quantities than whole wheat bread, we began losing most of the nutritious, fiber rich elements of the bran and germ and a host of trace minerals. Although white flour was eventually enriched with some nutrients in the 1940’s as per the F.D.A. enrichment standards, it was much like lending someone $5.00 and getting back $1.00. Health or Hype? How could gluten, present in a staple food that has sustained humanity for at least 10,000 years become so threatening? Why has this protein become the demon after everything else we have subtracted from wheat flour? There are many theories, but no clear scientifically satisfying answers. But “gluten-free is the hottest trend in food today”, wrote Yale University lecturer Vikram Mansharamani, in the Fortune magazine article, We’re in a Gluten-Free Bubble That is About to Burst (5/5/2015). It competes with “non-GMO” and “local and organic.” “For those with celiac disease, (1% of the population) a gluten-free diet is an indisputably wise medical directive,” wrote Keith Chang in a New York Times article (2/4/2013) titled Gluten-Free, Whether You Need it or Not. But for those who don’t need it, (93% of the population that don’t have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity) it is not a healthier diet, according to Dr. Guandalini, in the same article. For

GLUTEN

a protein found in wheat, rye and barley has been blamed for EVERYTHING from arthritis and asthma to multiple sclerosis and schizophrenia.

example, Mansharamani discovered that a New York style (gluten-free) bagel (Glutino original) has 26% more calories, 250% more fat, 43% more sodium, 50% less fiber and double the sugar of a Thomas' plain (wheat) bagel. Further, Mansharamani said, “because many gluten-free products utilize rice flour, they are at risk of containing high levels of arsenic... None of this is to suggest that there isn’t a real underlying need for gluten free Products,” writes Mansharamani. From an economic point, gluten-free products cost up to twice as much as a comparable gluten product. US News and World Reports estimates that this cost equates to $4–$10 billion dollars a year. Mansharamani’s gluten free bagel cost 74% more than the wheat bagel. As a further note: These gluten-free markets are increasingly controlled by large corporations such as Goya, ShopRite, Glutino. Even General Mills and Kellogg are getting in on the action. As Fortune magazine (8/19/2011) wrote, “Food giants mine the gluten-free gold rush.” More alarming are the findings of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health “Avoiding (gluten-containing) grains puts one at risk of deficiencies of nutrients and minerals.” The food industry generally replaces such grains and flours with highly refined carbohydrates such as the starches of rice, corn, tapioca and potato, none of which are usually enriched with nutrients and minerals found in the whole grain. Their study also found that inadequate amounts of insoluble fiber (found in whole grain/whole wheat products) might lead to constipation as well as potentially alter the beneficial gut bacteria, which can negatively impact the immune system. But despite the facts that gluten-free products have higher prices and possibly less nutritional value, “the gluten-free craze continues.” A Scientific American poll showed that 30% of Americans want to cut back or be gluten-free,

and an astounding 21% are making an active attempt to be glutenfree, according to a Gallup poll. This gluten-free trend disturbs Katherine Tallmadge, M.A., R.D., a dietician and author of “Diet Simple.” “Most people should not eat a gluten-free diet. For most people, a gluten-free diet will not provide benefit.” She goes on to say that the main reason people initiate a gluten-free diet is because of lethargy or ill health. “People who try gluten-free may feel better because (while avoiding gluten) they cut out refined carbohydrates and sugar laden snacks and desserts. Of course they also see weight reduction. They mistakenly attribute these benefits to gluten elimination.” Heather Mangieri, a nutritionist and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics agrees. “There is nothing magical about eliminating gluten that results in weight loss. Any of us that... remove cookies and candies from our diet and replaces them with fruits and vegetables is going to lose weight and feel better.” In fact, as malfunctioning intestines of celiac patients recover, they often gain weight. Finally, in his newsletter dated March 2013, John McDougall M.D. (pillar of the health and plant based nutrition community) stated “gluten-free diets are unequivocally harmful for the general population except for one percent.” That one percent is people diagnosed with celiac disease. Dr. McDougall suggests that if a food allergy (like wheat or gluten) is suspected, to first try eliminating dairy products, eggs, chocolate, nuts, shellfish and fish; the five leading causes of food allergies. Then if the problem persists, try eliminating wheat, corn, citrus, fruits and strawberries, the most frequent causes of allergies in the vegetable kingdom. If you are not allergic to grains other than wheat, a wheat-free diet is less restrictive than a gluten-free diet. Lastly, Celiac disease cannot be self-diagnosed. If you suspect you are one of the one percent, you might consider getting tested by your physician before giving up on whole grains and other glutencontaining products you have grown to love. WRITTEN BY CO-OP MEMBERS TOMAS KUJAT AND TWOMOONS N.D. (author of Peace in Every Bite; A Vegan Cookbook)

MARCH 12TH AND 19TH WORKDAYS, 9AM–NOON BIG things are happening at the

DESERT OASIS TEACHING GARDEN!

HOME COMPOSTING

Thanks to a grant from the PNM foundation we are building a Welcome Center for the garden. This new space will serve as an informative and educational hub. Come lend a hand and help us build out our new space! We'll teach you basic construction skills, soil building, and water conservation techniques.

CLASSES FROM MASTER COMPOSTERS The Bernalillo County Extension Master Composter Program is offering a variety of classes throughout March, most of which are FREE to attend.

just dropping things in a pile though, so take advantage of this great resource while it’s available!

Want to start composting, or interested in other methods of composting to reduce smell and allow for a greater range of food waste inputs? These classes are an excellent opportunity!

For those just getting started, three Home Composting Basics classes will be offered at various locations around Albuquerque on March 5, 12, and 19. More advanced classes include Bokashi Bucket Composting and a class that delves into the soil amendment process.

Composting is a great way to reduce the amount of trash you send to the landfill while enriching your soils at the same time. It’s not as simple as

For locations, times, registration, and more information, visit the Master Composters online at www.nmcomposters.org.

DESERT OASIS TEACHING

GARDEN


INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY

March 2016 14

DR. ANN WIGMORE: THE MOTHER OF THE

LIVING FOODS MOVEMENT BY SUSAN LAVENDAR, DIRECTOR, ANN WIGMORE FOUNDATION RETREAT CENTER hose of the NOW generation may not know the great pioneer, Dr Ann Wigmore. Ann is the mother of Wheatgrass juice. Popularized in the early 1960's, wheatgrass juice healed Ann Wigmore of colon cancer! She set out to explain her use of wheatgrass juice and her “Energy Soup”, a sprout-based porridge, with the opening of her Hippocrates Health Institute of Boston. The name of her institute changed to Ann Wigmore Foundation and moved to New Mexico in 1998.

Dr Ann was one of the first natural doctors who produced a great parade of healing with wheatgrass juice. The basic laws of nature combined can often heal what are considered incurable diseases. On my path of 35 years, I had never seen the truth of how we grow and blossom as human beings so well presented until I learned the Living Foods way with its all-encompassing understandings. To become that transformed human who really cares and facilitates the healing of people and planet is to be one who knows, feels and is in action to the mission of serving the needs of an ailing and diseased world.

In Ann's Words “Purification is so vital! The mind and the body must be made free of pollutants. The body must be cleansed of the accumulation of toxins caused by eating unnatural, cooked food containing chemical synthetic additives. These foods are completely lacking in the natural elements needed to keep the cells functioning vigorously in their work of renewing and repairing the body and cleansing it of waste. The mind also must be purified from the inner turmoil of fears, doubts and confusion. We must overcome these blockages which prevent us from getting in touch with the universal law of harmony and which prevent us from experiencing the unity of life.”

At the Ann Wigmore Foundation we guide people through a detoxification program while offering educational classes

In My Words As the caretaker of the Ann Wigmore Foundation, I am a steward of Planet Earth and I found my mission of healing and serving at the age of 21. I am a holistic educator, a Living Foods health coach, and organic gardener, composter and recycler.

Features Contemporary Art. March 30: National Hispanic Cultural Center with Tricklock Theatre Company.

omen & Creativity is an annual, month-long series that celebrates women’s creativity across the disciplines. This year marks the 11th anniversary of the program. Women & Creativity places particular emphasis on the innovation, exchange and leadership of our community’s most visionary women. Their featured events are inventive, resourceful, and inspiring curated collaborations between women working in myriad creative fields.

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The Roving Table: Community Gathering, Family-Style Tables naturally bring people together to share food, tell stories, or work out differences. Presented by Women in Design: NM and UNM School of Architecture & Planning, this large-scale table of reclaimed materials will move around the city, offering a surprising invitation for community exchange. Saturday, March 5, 5–8pm at Harwood Art Center.

Five creative salons throughout March offer gatherings to build community and find points of intersection for creativity, work, and projects. Salons are lightly facilitated to encourage broad participation. Salons will be held every Wednesday in March from 5:30pm–7pm. March 2: Keshet Ideas & Innovation Center with Women in Design. March 9: SCA Contemporary at Sanitary Tortilla Factory with A Good Sign. March 16: Harwood Art Center with Shastyn Photography & Design and Tractor Bewing. March 23: 516 ARTS with Richard Levy Gallery and Central

Feast for the Senses: A Pop-up Dinner Join us at the table as we take you on an exploration of creativity during this pop-up dinner. In the unique gallery setting, music, art, poetry, theater and/or dance are integrated with the culinary arts. Presented by edible Santa Fe and Farm & Table, the menu will push the limits of the sensory experience. Tuesday, March 29, 7–9pm at SCA Contemporary at Sanitary Tortilla Factory ($/RSVP). For more information: www.womenandcreativity.org.

IN MARCH!

“Today, through “Living Foods,” we are experiencing a greater cosmic current which makes for the potential rebuilding of total physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. Worldwide adherence to a living foods diet would result in a new type of human being, capable of creating the required environment for a happy and prosperous "dis-ease" free life for everyone. The transformation of this earth will be accomplished through healthy minds nourished on “Living Foods!”

WOMEN AND CREATIVITY

allowing the knowledge that is innate in all to resurface. We offer an Energy Soup luncheon for $50 once a month, counseling sessions and discounts to New Mexico residents on tuition for the ten day transformational experience. Visit our website: www.wigmore.org for a free Living Foods pamphlet.

COMING

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COMMUNITY FORUM ROCK AND

March 2016 15

RHYTHM FOUNDATION

ROCK OUT MARCH 12

has proven to be just the inspiration needed for thousands of students, many of whom avoid traditional music programs but who have thrived under Janov’s guidance. Rock and Rhythm not only teaches music, it helps students create better lives for themselves.

BY LISA ELLIS, ADMINISTRATIVE DIRECTOR ROCK AND RHYTHM FOUNDATION eens love music. At an age often filled with emotional turmoil, they also seek a sense of belonging and empowerment. These elements come together in Rock and Rhythm, a decidedly non-traditional approach to music education developed over the last 20 years by Jefferson Middle School music teacher, Robb Janov. “If we could inspire kids to become compassionate and successful at just one thing,” states Janov, “I really believe that success will reverberate throughout their lives, beyond anything we could imagine.” The award-winning Rock and Rhythm Band program

Based on the success of Rock and Rhythm at Jefferson, and in response to requests by parents and students asking for a similar program for high school musicians, Janov created the Rock and Rhythm Foundation (RRF), a 501(c)(3) charity dedicated to making music education and performance opportunities more accessible. At the heart of the Foundation is the Rock and Rhythm Youth Orchestra (RRYO), a low-cost, community-based music program run in partnership with the City of Albuquerque’s South Broadway Cultural Center. RRYO combines string instruments (violin, viola, cello, bass) with rock band instruments (electric guitar, electric bass, keyboard, drums and vocals) in a non-competitive, team-based ensemble that includes

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high school students from across the greater Albuquerque area. Now in its second year, RRYO is already gaining rave reviews from parents for providing the safe environment that helps build confidence in teens while bolstering musical skills. RRYO gives students a voice and a place to belong. RRF provides additional music opportunities. The Rock and Rhythm in Your Schools program, now entering its 4th year of working with fifth grade beginning strings players in the Rio Rancho School District, is available to other schools. Janov also leads music workshops for students and educators. For more information see www.randrfoundation.org. You can help support Rock and Rhythm by joining us for a benefit concert at the South Broadway Cultural Center on Saturday, March 12, 2–5pm (doors open at 1:30pm). Proceeds support the Foundation’s scholarship and instrument funds. The concert will feature Baracutanga and includes an incredible line-up of local talent: Chris Dracup, Artha Meadors, James Whiton, Wendy Beach, Paul Salazar, Kevin 'Recycleman' Kinane, Chuck Hawley, Doug Bellen, Donne Lewis, Julian Singer-Corbin, Esme Vaandrager and our own Rock and Rhythm Youth Orchestra. Enjoy food from the Chocolate Dude and House of Bread and enter our benefit drawings to help Rock and Rhythm. We’ll be giving away an overnight getaway at Hotel Andaluz, an Epiphone signature acoustic guitar, a Chocolate Dude gift basket and more! Admission: $15 in advance, $20 at the door; $10 for 12 and under. Tickets are available at southbroadwaytickets.com or at the South Broadway Cultural Center Office 505-848-1320. See randrfoundation.org for details.

AVAILABLE MEDIA : GALLUP ’ S KNIZ COMMUNITY RADIO

THE BEAUTY OF NATIVE

VOICES

BY DAVID BARBOUR adio stations are either commercial or non-commercial. Commercial stations run commercials to stay on the air. Non-commercial stations can get money for “underwriting” which are very limited types of ads, but mainly they must subsist on donations and pledge drives.

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A dedicated community radio station can help identify particular problems facing the Native American community in Gallup and educate and inform appropriate solutions such as shopping for healthy alternatives at the co-op, supporting voter registration, and improving voter turnout.

Gallup, New Mexico has two non-commercial secular stations. One of them is KGLP which has mainly NPR programming supplemented with Democracy Now, Native America Calling and locally originated shows. KNIZ is the newcomer and has had a mainly music format with classical, local musicians, old time radio and old time jazz.

We broadcast at 90.1 and are streaming live on the web at http://listen.samcloud.com/w/71524/KNIZ. Available Media is based in Albuquerque, with a local board in Gallup consisting mainly of Native Americans and a Navajo station manager. Our format includes Pacifica programs, local news, Native Voice One programming, local musicians, educational programming, and provides our flavor of an alternative to commercial broadcasting. KNIZ is experimenting with crowd funding.

KNIZ is working at becoming a true community radio station with an emphasis on supporting the Native American community in Gallup. KNIZ comes from the Navajo word Nizhoni which means beautiful.

PLEASE CHECK OUT OUR PAGE AT: www.bit.ly/KNIZradio. We ask co-op members to advertise this link in your social media and donate if you can.

The station is owned by Available Media, Inc., an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to creating a community radio station to support the people of Gallup, especially Native Americans who make up 43% of the city as well as the people who come from the reservations around Gallup to shop on the weekends.

Although KGLP and KNIZ are separate entities, we are not in competition. We are working together to meet the community needs of the whole of the Gallup community. Ninety percent of commercial media in the United States is owned by 6 corporations. This is your chance to fund local media that cares about the community and is created by the community. Our administrative costs are low and are funded from other sources, so every penny you donate will go directly to the radio station. For more information email: room2@earthlink.net

KNIZ COMES FROM THE NAVAJO WORD NIZHONI WHICH MEANS BEAUTIFUL

EXPERIMENTS IN CINEMA V11.4

A BASEMENT FILMS PRODUCTION APRIL

5–10

BY BRYAN KONEFSKY Experiments in Cinema (EIC) is an annual, noncompetitive festival and Basement Films production that celebrates international cinematic experimentation. This year we are celebrating our 11th anniversary with a host of unique programs and a special focus on women in cinema. EIC will screen more than 100 films from 35 countries along with

special lectures, workshops and a program of films made by New Mexico middle school students. The goal of Experiments in Cinema is to bring the international community of cinematic experimentalists to New Mexico to then inspire a new generation of movie makers to recognize the value of their media-voices and create films in ways we never imagined possible.

NATIONAL FENCE

PHOTOGRAPHY SHOW

SANTA FE RAILYARD EXHIBIT: A CALL FOR ENTRIES BY GABRIELLA MARKS American Society of Media Photographers New Mexico is pleased to announce the open call for entries for the national photography exhibit called THE FENCE, and associated regional exhibit, THE FENCE NEW MEXICO. THE FENCE 2016 is an annual outdoor photography exhibition series with an annual audience of more than 3 million visitors. In 2016, Santa Fe is joining the roster of exhibition locations: Brooklyn Bridge Park in New York City, Boston, Atlanta, and Houston. THE FENCE NEW MEXICO will be presented in the same format in Santa Fe's Railyard Park during the summer 2016. Only New Mexico residents are eligible to apply for the FENCE NEW MEXICO. Photographers of all levels are invited to submit work that fits under one or more of our 6 thematic categories: Home, Streets, People, Creatures, Nature, and Play. If you are a resident of New Mexico you may submit for the national and regional exhibits at the same time. The deadline for submissions is March 7, 2016. A jury of photography professionals will review and select 40 photographers whose submitted work exemplifies the essence of “community” across cultural boundaries and geographical lines. Info at: www.fence.photoville.com/ or email gabriella@triggerfinger.com. Submit entries to www. fence.photoville.com/submit/

Featured in our special focus on women will be presentations by Ariel Dougherty (founder of Women Make Movies), Laura Mulvey (historic feminist writer and filmmaker), Caroline Koebel (presenting a program on Chantel Ackerman), Maarit Vanaanen Suomi, Kamila Kuc (artist in residence from the UK), Caryn Cline/Linda Fenstermaker/Taylor Dunne (presenting a program of Ovular films), and Patricia Sanchez Mora (representing the L’Alternativa Film Festival in Barcelona, Spain). EXPERIMENTS IN CINEMA will take place at the Guild Cinema, 3405 Central Ave. NE, ABQ. For info and tickets call 505-916-1635 or go to: www.experimentsincinema.org or


La Montañita Co-op Connection News, March 2016  
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