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G R O W I N G A C C E S S T O H E A LT H Y L O C A L P R O D U C E

DOUBLE UP

FOOD BUCKS BUY ONE, GET ONE REDUCING HUNGER, IMPROVING NUTRITION

May’s Board Community Education Series Topic:

BY ROBIN SEYDEL Double Up Food Bucks ll of us at La Montañita Co-op are thrilled to announce the start of our participation in the Read about it Double Up Food Bucks (DUFB) program. This and healthy food access program provides a "buy one, get one" match on New on page 7. Mexico grown produce for (SNAP) Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program recipients who use an EBT card. This program has been in use at area farmers' markets for several years, and now La Montañita Co-op will be the first grocery store Other details included working with cashiering staff in the state that will be able to offer this EBT benefit to shoppers to ensure the two-for-one discount would be applied on a daily basis all year long. People using their EBT card at any of correctly before shoppers swiped their EBT card, our Co-op locations will have access to the program at all of our updating signage in our produce departments to show cash registers. the DUFB logo on appropriate New Mexico-grown produce, and the generation of the necessary reports We are able to provide this program thanks to a collaboration with for the NMFMA in their management of the funds for our longtime friends at the New Mexico Farmers' Marketing the program. Association (NMFMA). Last fall NMFMA Executive Director Denise Miller and Double Up Food Bucks Program Coordinator Despite budget difficulties at the state legislature this Lucy McDermott approached the Co-op about our participation. year, thanks to the dogged determination of Denise, We were immediately excited by the thought that we would be able Lucy and their legislative supporters, the program, to provide more healthy fruit and vegetables to shoppers on a limwhile initially being recommended for cuts in funding, ited income while expanding the local food economy. It is a brilended up with approval of $390,300 in 2016. liant opportunity that provides a means to meet our Board-directed mission of expanding healthy food access to a larger segment of Thanks to the expertise of David Varela, our Inthe New Mexican population, with the added bonus of working formation Technology Director, Sylvia MacGregor, with longtime friends to expand the local food movement and Director of the Co-op's Scanning department, produce improve nutrition in the community. teams and Front End Coordinators at our Albuquerque and Santa Fe locations, details that once Crafting a Process seemed daunting have been worked out. At a series of DUFB meetings last fall and in the early winter 2016, it rapidly became clear that there were a number of techMAY 1: EBT Shoppers Get a "Buy One, Get nical issues to be overcome in how our point of sale system One" Discount at Your Co-op would separate the necessary subtotal of New Mexico-grown This month we are pleased to announce that the produce from the regional foodshed produce we often carry. DUFB program, with its "buy one, get one" discount

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on local produce for EBT shoppers, is now live. If you or people you know use EBT, encourage them to come to the Co-op to get great deals on local produce. As another bonus of the program, La Montañita produce purchaser Bob Veilleux and produce staff will all be looking to increase the amount of New Mexico-grown produce at all of our locations all year long to meet what we hope will be an increased demand from our EBT friends. Informational handouts on the program are available at all La Montañita Co-op locations—ask Co-op cashiers, or for more information contact Robin at robins@lamontanita.coop or 217-2027 with questions or input. The Double Up Food Bucks Program is the subject of this month's Community Education Series. Hear from Lucy McDermott, Double Up Food Bucks Coordinator for the Santa Fe Farmers' Marketing Association on Tuesday May 17 at 5:30pm at Immanuel Church across from the Nob Hill Co-op's back door. Read more on Double Up Food Bucks and healthy food access on Page 7 of this newsletter.

Membership is Ownership

STRATEGIES FOR OUR CO-OP FUTURE RELEVANCE IN A CHANGING

MARKETPLACE

EDITOR’S NOTE: If you wrote to the Board of Directors about the changes taking place at the Co-op, you may have received an email with a version of this article as a response. The Board has decided to share this perspective with our wider Co-op ownership as a means of continuing the dialogue on strategies for our cooperative's future.

impact on our financial health. Those smaller patronage dividends you’ve been receiving are evidence of the impact of declining sales and profit. What are the short-term and long-term strategies the Co-op could deploy to reverse this situation? How can we thrive in the “new normal” of retail grocery? La Montañita has one big competitive edge. We are a co-op. Our stores are owned by the people who shop them and our profits are seen in benefits to our community. So, diversifying and adding to our membership is a key strategy for a strong future.

BY ARIANA MARCHELLO, BOARD PRESIDENT n the second half of last year, La Montañita’s Board of Directors hosted three focus cafes to gather member input around a very compelling fact—there are many, many more outlets at which to purchase natural and organic foods than ever before, including retailers of the largest scale such as Walmart, Costco and Target. The Co-op has been feeling the pressure from this increased competition and its

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Many of the changes you have noticed in the stores of late have all been geared to increasing the assortment of natural, organic and local products that the co-op carries. We’ve made changes in pricing too. The introduction of the “Clean 15” is also part of this program. These are conventional produce products that have been assessed by the Environmental Working Group on their pesticide residue. The “Clean 15” were found to have the least amount of residue in the spectrum of available conventional produce. Better prices and wider assortment of organic and local products in our produce departments are geared to provide greater access Our deepest thanks to you, our wonderful to affordable, healthy foods for all our neighbors Co-op community, for coming out year after in our community. year and helping to grow the EarthFest! We are lucky to be a part of this very special New Mexican community. It is inspiring to see the farming community growing by leaps and bounds and all the interest in environmental, social, and economic justice action. A special thanks to all our artists for sharing their gifts, our volunteers who help throughout the organizing process, during set up and clean up and all through the day. And of course hats off to our wonderful staff for all they do at EarthFest and every day to make the Co-op the amazing place that it is—you are terrific!

EARTHFEST

Our most sincere thanks for making our 26th Annual EarthFest the amazing day it was. With love, Robin Seydel

THANKS

A 26TH ANNUAL EARTHFEST THANKS! YOU MAKE IT HAPPEN!

We took a good look at our Ends statement to see how we are doing to accomplish their intent. We revisited how commitment to those Ends could help steer our cooperative so it remains a healthy sustainable business to fund and support all the local projects, community development, and outreach we value. Our Ends • Increased access to, and purchase of healthy foods. • A strengthened cooperative community. • A thriving and sustainable local economy that benefits members and the community. • A growing regenerative agriculture sector that uses sound environmental practices. The first End, increasing access to healthy foods, required a strategy for lower pricing. Our selection of produce and products that co-

op member-owners have grown to expect continue to be on the shelves. Some of our favorite ORGANIC fruits and vegetables have been very affordable lately. This took hard work and strategy from our buyers. We have always sold local CLEAN products at our store. Local produce is often not certified organic. It is grown with attention to standards; no pesticides or artificial fertilizers, but local growers cannot afford organic certification. Education was the recurring theme of the focus cafes. When revisiting the next three Ends statements it became clear that we must change the belief of a large part of our community that thinks of the Co-op as very high priced for the same products available elsewhere. It is important to realize that this perception is exaggerated and perpetuated by those who believe this is all we have to offer. We want to create an opportunity for everyone to discover the Co-op difference. Educating our neighbors on the benefits of the Co-op is only accomplished if they can hear our story. The local impact of the Co-op’s success, which includes the availability of local products that supports local growers and vendors and strengthens our community, should be a part of the story shoppers understand when they come through our doors. Changes will continue as La Montañita discovers the strategies that work the best and have the widest acceptance with member-owners. We need to hear more. The board and management truly seek and appreciate your continuing feedback as things progress. Contact us at bod@lamontanita.coop.


HAPPENINGS

May 2016 2

La Montañita Cooperative A Community-Owned Natural Foods Grocery Store

GMO-FREE

Nob Hill 7am – 10pm M – Sa, 8am – 10pm Su 3500 Central SE, ABQ, NM 87106 505-265-4631

MEW MEXICO’S

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

"Farmers, Food and Friends," and at the end of the event, the best works will be auctioned to support the cause. Also, bring your dancing shoes—there will be live music.

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

THREE WEEKENDS OF ACTIVITIES AND ACTIONS

Westside 7am – 9pm M – Su 3601 Old Airport Ave, ABQ, NM 87114 505-503-2550

NEW MEXICO!

Cooperative Distribution Center 9am – 5pm, M – F 901 Menaul NE, ABQ, NM 87107 505-217-2010

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 Store Team Leaders: • Bob Veilleux/Nob Hill 265-4631 bob.veilleux@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 • Treasurer: Tracy Sprouls • Lisa Banwarth-Kuhn • James Esqueda • Gregory Gould • Tammy Parker • Courtney White 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.

FOR A GMO-FREE

BY KYLE JOHNSON itizens across the US are currently experiencing unprecedented success in their efforts to promote GMO labeling, especially in state legislatures like those in Vermont, Maine and Connecticut. Combined with the federal government's lack of follow-through on preemptive legislation that would ban states efforts to enact their own labeling legislation, New Mexicans have never had a better opportunity to promote the GMO legislation that we want, and we may never get the opportunity again. Genetically modified foods may have significant personal health effects as well as disastrous consequences for the food chain. The chemicals that are either sprayed onto our foods or engineered directly into their DNA are destroying the biodiversity that is key to our resilience and threatening all of the world's pollinators, without which most of our foods are unable to reproduce.

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Support Office 9am – 5pm, M – F 901 Menaul NE, ABQ, NM 87107 505-217-2001

This May the opportunities abound to educate ourselves on the issue and speak to our communities, families and friends about how GMOs can affect us personally, our communities and our planet. GMO-Free NM is hosting events 3 weekends this month that celebrate good clean food and contribute to our own nutritional autonomy at the grassroots level. ART Fight May 13 starts the celebration with ArtFight at Tractor Brewing in Wells Park. Come watch all kinds of artists create their art in front of a live audience. The theme artists will be portraying is

Bees and Seeds Festival Finally, the piece de résistance, the Bees and Seeds Festival will be celebrated on May 28, again at Tractor Brewing in Wells Park. The festival is a family friendly event with local farmers, advocates and crafts celebrating the wonderful diversity of food and culture in New Mexico and especially in Albuquerque. There will be snacks and food trucks, children's activities like button and seed bomb making, free vegetable plants to take home to your garden, and beekeepers to answer questions about the most important species on the planet. The Seed Broadcast Truck will be present to give you an opportunity to share your seed and food stories with the world. There will also be live music from Element37, Keith Sanchez, and BuddhaFunk, as well as spoken word and poetry. The Bees and Seeds Festival is sure to be a fun and positive way to celebrate our diverse and growing local food, beverage and agri-cultures! For more information please go to facebook.com/gmofreenm for all the up-to-date information during this exciting month-long celebration. Join us further by writing to your local, state and federal legislatures that you have had enough of their culinary subversion! Please follow us on facebook.com/gmofreenm for all the up-to-date information during this exciting month-long celebration.

THE DAILY PRACTICE OF SUSTAINABILITY BY AMANDA BRAMBLE

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mpersand is a living demonstration site for permaculture, appropriate technologies, and sustainable practices. It is also the home of Amanda and Andy Bramble and whoever we are hosting at the time. Our off-grid site demonstrates sustainable systems including land restoration, organic gardening, passive solar design, and wise water techniques. We build with natural and salvaged materials, cook with solar ovens, and rely on rain catchment. Our whole approach to sustainability is about your relationship with your resources. We start with the basics: water, food, shelter, and energy. We are simply gathering, experimenting with, and demonstrating sustainable solutions for living in harmony with our bioregion. Ampersand hosts workshops and community events, retreats, residencies, and internships for everyday folks wanting to respond intelligently to the state of the Earth. People often come to learn a specific skill, and discover they also build confidence and find inspiration for their next sustainable project at home. We offer a place where people connect, share resources and meet like-minded folks in order to encourage wise practices to grow roots everywhere.

UPCOMING WORKSHOPS Sustainable Kitchens and Solar Cooking. May 22, 10am–4pm: Learn about the range of solar cookers, cooking techniques, appropriate cookware, canning in solar ovens, and safe temperature ranges. We'll taste our solar cooked creations. Also, preservation techniques like solar dehydration and vegetable fermentation. We'll discuss how to integrate these into your current life style. Details and RSVP at ampersandproject.org. High Desert Gardening May 28, 10am–4pm: Grow food successfully in our harsh climate. Focusing on timing for starting seeds indoors and outdoors and surviving the spring winds, pests, and sun. Prepare your soil, extend your growing season. Get the most out of small growing areas through staged plantings, inter-cropping, perennial plants, and appropriate permaculture strategies. Details and RSVP at ampersandproject.org. For more information or to register for the above classes go to www.ampersandproject.org. Find out about additional events at Ampersand: ampersandprojectblog.wordpress.com.

DESERT OASIS BY KAREN BENTRUP

S CO-OP

March Against Monsanto The following Saturday, May 21, GMO-Free NM is hosting the International March Against Monsanto. Albuquerque will be one of 428 cities in 38 countries on all 6 habitable continents that will be protesting the business, health and ecological practices of Monsanto. Come express your solidarity with the cause! Bring your signs, slogans, hollering voices, friends and family. This will be an excellent opportunity to learn more on an individual oneon-one basis. Please keep checking facebook.com/gmofreenm for details on times and locations.

AMPERSAND SUSTAINABLE LEARNING CENTER

TEACHING GARDEN

YOU OWN IT

MERRY MAY

pring is officially here and, oh boy, has the past month been a whirlwind! While gusts and gales have been busy kicking up dust, here at the DOT Gardens we’ve been busy moving mounds and building out our Welcome Center. The 12,000 square foot area is quickly transforming from a lawn monoculture into a water harvesting and erosion control project.

Thanks to the dozens of volunteers who have lent a hand, we’ve been able to move hundreds of yards of earth to form a series of berms and swales and lay the foundation (literally) for the shade structures to come. Desert Oasis Teaching Garden PLANT SALE: Saturday May 7: Check out all their plants and plan your garden. Support their gardens by buying your plants at the sale. FOR MORE INFORMATION go to: info@thedotgarden.org or call 505-858-8873. The Dot Garden is located at 6400 Wyoming Blvd. NE, on the Albuquerque Academy campus.


FORWARD INTO THE FUTURE

May 2016 3

MAY’S DONATE-A-DIME ORGANIZATION

ENCUENTRO:

EDUCATING IMMIGRANTS FOR A MORE PRODUCTIVE COMMUNITY BY ANDREA PLAZA ncuentro’s mission is to transform New Mexico into a thriving community for all of its residents. We do this by engaging Latino immigrant adults in educational opportunities that build skills for economic and social justice. Encuentro is committed to the belief that quality education should build both individual and community knowledge, and with that knowledge comes individual and community power.

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Since 2010 Encuentro has supported over 1,200 immigrant parents and workers to strengthen their English language skills, obtain their HSE/GED, master computer technology and develop small businesses. Along the way we’re building bridges that connect our students with people and resources throughout the community—from healthy homes to financial institutions and legal services, to community organizing and more. This combination of building skills and relationships in a new country is the cornerstone of making the immigrant experience successful and supports parents and workers to build strong and engaged families for generations to come. Encuentro is proud to have been selected as the featured non-profit for La Montañita Co-op during the month

COMMITTED to quality education and social and ECONOMIC

JUSTICE of May. May is a very special month for us as we will be graduating over 300 students from our educational programs, including 24 women who will be receiving their state certification as Home Health Aids through our newly launched collaboration with CNM that provides access to this valuable training and certification in Spanish.

RIO GRANDE 2400 Rio Grande. Blvd. NW 505-242-8800

Visit our website at www.encuentronm.org or contact us at 247-2920 if you are interested in learning more about our work in the community. We welcome volunteers and have a variety of ways you can become involved with the organization.

SANTA FE

PREVENTION ALLIANCE MAY 7

CONFERENCE

NM’S OPIOID AND OVERDOSE EPIDEMIC n response to overdose deaths in New Mexico, Santa Fe Opiate Safe, a committee of the Santa Fe Prevention Alliance, is hosting a conference on Saturday, May 7 from 8:30am– 4:30pm at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center.

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Too many New Mexicans are dying of drug overdoses, a preventable and tragic public health crisis. In 2014, a total of 547 New Mexicans died from a drug overdose, a 20% increase over the previous year. In the past two decades, New Mexico has had one of the highest drug overdose death rates in the nation in almost every year; nearly double the national average. One

county, Rio Arriba, has the highest drug overdose death rate of any county in the nation: 158 deaths per 100,000 people. Alexander Y. Walley, MD, MSc., internist and addiction medicine specialist at Boston University Medical Center, Medical Director for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health Opioid Overdose Prevention Pilot Program and co-author of over 40 research papers about addiction will share his experience and wisdom addressing opioid addiction and overdose. The Santa Fe Prevention Alliance is a coalition of 25+ local and state organizations whose shared vision is a Santa Fe County in which no one under 21 drinks alcohol, adults model low risk use of alcohol, no one drives while impaired and no one abuses drugs. The Prevention Alliance received national recognition as the 2015 recipient of the prestigious Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America Chairman’s Award for their exemplary leadership in the field of substance abuse prevention. Register at: https://southwestcare.ejoinmen.org/SOS. email: SantaFePreventionAlliance@gmail.com, or 505-470-9072.

RAILYARD STEWARDS WORKSHOPS

CO-OP PROGRAM

DONATE your BAG CREDIT!

These FREE workshops take place at Railyard Park Community Room located directly behind SITE Santa Fe. For more information contact: Jason Jaramillo, Program Coordinator at 505-316-3596 or jason@railyardpark.org. Visit www.railyardpark.org/events-calendar/calendar

THIS MONTH YOUR DONATE-A-DIME DONATIONS GO TO: ENCUENTRO: Education to build individual and community knowledge for engaged families and upcoming generations. Your March bag credit donations of $2,739.41 went to the Friends of the Rio Grande Nature Center.

YOUR DIMES ADD UP!

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

Alamed a Blvd. Coors Blvd.

The Railyard Stewards are pleased of offer the following workshops: NATIVE BEE HOUSE TOUR AND BEE WALK WITH DR. OLIVIA CARRIL, MELITTOLOGIST Saturday, May 14, 10am to 12pm The Railyard Park’s first large-scale Native Bee House will be installed this spring. Join Dr. Carril on a Bee Walk and Native Bee House Tour in the Railyard Park

BUG WALK AND PEST IDENTIFICATION WITH VICTOR LUCERO, CITY OF SANTA FE INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT PROGRAM MANAGER Saturday, May 21, 10am to 12pm Victor will introduce participants to common Santa Fe area pests, how to control them, and lead a Bug Walk through the Railyard Park. Bring samples of garden pests and Victor will identify them.

COOP

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he Railyard Stewards are the nonprofit conservancy organization responsible for the specialized horticultural care of the gardens and landscapes, public programming, and temporary art installations at Santa Fe's largest, cultivated public Park—the Railyard Park.

to identify and observe our native bees up-close and how to help their diminishing populations by building your own back-yard habitat.

Old A irport Ave.

SANTA FE RAILYARD PARK

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.


SIGNS OF THE SEASON

May 2016 4

CLEANING CLEAN:

MAKING HEALTHY

PRODUCTS

PRODUCTS

the you already have AT HOME to get EVERYTHING

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Vinegar Vinegar cleans as well as most all-purpose cleaners. All you need is to mix a solution of equal parts of water and vinegar in a spray bottle and you have a solution that will clean most areas of your home. It is also a natural disinfectant and deodorizer. It does an excellent job on windows and when mixed with a little ash can clean those hard to clean windows in your wood stove. The one downside is that it can discolor or damage some surfaces so testing on a hidden area first is a good idea. When used undiluted it can eat away at tile grout. The smell disappears when it dries. In bathrooms, you can clean the bathtub, toilet, sink, and countertops. Use pure vinegar in the toilet bowl to get rid of unsightly rings. Flush the toilet to allow the water level to go down before pouring the undiluted vinegar around the inside of the rim. Scrub down the bowl. You can also mop the floor in the bathroom with a vinegar/water solution. Vinegar will eat away the soap scum and hard water stains on your fixtures and tile leaving them shiny and beautiful. In the kitchen, clean the top of the stove with equal parts vinegar and water. Most appliances can be cleaned with this same all purpose mix of vinegar and water. Use vinegar to clean floors and be amazed at the fresh, shiny results. Finally in the laundry use a 1/4–1/2 cup of vinegar as a natural fabric softener in the rinse cycle.

SQUEAKY CLEAN your sneakers. Baking soda makes a great addition in the laundry room as well. Baking soda is actually one of the most versatile cleaners on the planet.

Lemon Juice Lemon juice dissolves soap scum and hard water deposits and can clean and shine brass and copper. Try mixing lemon juice with vinegar or baking soda to make a cleaning paste. Cut a lemon in half and sprinkle baking soda on the cut section of the lemon. Use the lemon to scrub dishes, surfaces, and stains. Be aware that lemon juice can act as a natural bleach. It's a good idea to test it out on a hidden area first. Mix 1 cup olive oil with 1/2 cup lemon juice and you have a furniture polish for hardwood furniture. Lemon juice can also be used to treat stains because of its natural bleaching qualities.

Using Other Natural Cleaners: There are quite a few other options for natural cleaners. You might be surprised to learn that things like ketchup, rice, coffee grounds, and other kitchen ingredients can actually do a fantastic job at cleaning house. You can also always buy commercially available natural cleaners, but be aware of what you need to look for in a green cleaning product before you buy. Be sure to learn about how to read labels on the products you are shopping for. Many of these commercial products use natural ingredients that you may have in your home, but not all green cleaners are created equal. Join us at the Westside location for a Cleaning Clean Workshop on May 14th at 11am

Baking Soda Baking soda can be used to scrub surfaces in much the same way as commercial non-abrasive cleansers. Baking soda is great as a deodorizer. Place a box in the refrigerator and freezer to absorb odors. Put it anywhere you need deodorizing action including inside

SEEKING BOARD MEMBERS

culture, growing food for and with our community, providing education and training opportunities in agriculture, RGCF IS ACTIVELY SEEKING NEW BOARD MEMBERS to enhancing urban wildlife habitat, and growing and celehelp with the mission to improve the health of our com- brating the farming community. munity through sustainable agriculture, fresh food, and education. We carry out our mission through our work in For more information about joining the board, please five strategic areas: demonstrating sustainable urban agri- visit http://riograndefarm.org. FOR

RIO GRANDE COMMUNITY FARM

TWO GREAT LOCAL COMPANIES

EARLY

SUMMER SKIN CARE

SOS... SAVE OUR SKIN

EDITED BY ROBIN SEYDEL FROM A VARIETY OF SOURCES eard about all the contaminants and toxic ingredients in many cleaning products? Looking for clean cleaning products? La MontaĂąita Co-op has a wide variety of clean cleaning products to use throughout your home. But you can go one better and use the tried and true products that you already have at hand to get everything squeaky clean. Just open your pantry and refrigerator and the products that your grandmother and great grandmother used to keep her house will be there for you as well. Vinegar, lemons, baking soda and others do a terrific job of cleaning, disinfecting, removing stains, and more.

You can use the tried and true

Super Salve Company Based in the southwestern mountains around Mogollon, NM, Super Salve is the brainchild of Denise Cowan, a longtime observer and fan of natural medicine and plant-based healing techniques. Denise pursued formal study at the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine, cultivating her knowledge and experience and graduating in 1988 as a clinical herbalist. Her first foray into creating a skin care product was a salve to help treat foot fungus suffered by rafters. This spurred her to create the Super Salve Company. Super Salve has a wide range of products, including sun screens, skin creams, balms and ointments made with organic ingredients, earth-friendly packaging and the greatest care. Super Salve is a healthy, caring enterprise devoted to helping maintain natural, healthy skin. A Sunshine Garden Emily Bharatiya is the creator of this local line of clean body care products. She says, "I began making natural body products when I was pregnant with my first son. I wanted to work for myself so that I might stay home with my child. I make all of my products from my home. Natural ingredients are an integral component of all Sunshine Garden body and home care products. This dedication to natural ingredients includes the foods Emily and family eat and grow as well. All A Sunshine Garden products are made in small batches and with the utmost care. Look for a wide range of body care and healthy home products in your LOCAL Co-op's Wellness department.


FOOD FOR THE SEASON

May 2016 5

C R E AT I N G O P T I O N S I N F L A V O R A N D V A L U E

FOUR DAUGHTERS

County to be finished on high quality grains and legumes that are grown right on their ranch.

LAND AND CATTLE

COMPANY

BY ROBIN SEYDEL he aroma of dinner on the grill has been wafting through my neighborhood for the past few weeks. It's a telltale sign of the change in seasonal eating. Given grilling season's arrival, it is with great pleasure that we introduce our owners and shoppers to the newest addition to our meat department offerings: Four Daughters Land and Cattle Company.

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Located west of Belen, Four Daughters Land & Cattle Company is a family-owned and -operated ranch, started in 1986. Owners Mike and Kathy Mechenbier have four daughters, hence the name of the ranch! Four Daughters was created by the purchase of contiguous and adjacent ranch land over the decades. Now Four Daughters is home to 2,000 or more cows on thousands of acres; 156 sections to be exact! It takes a lot of land to support even a single cow in our semi-arid ecosystem. The stocking rate at Four Daughters is one cow per 50

acres. Four Daughters also maintains 25% of their ranch land for wildlife habitat, and their carefully managed grazing plan assures that their environmental stewardship is top of the line. Four Daughters cow calf operation has all their cows grazing on their vast ranch lands eating the famously high-protein New Mexico blue grama grass for the majority of their lives. Four Daughters cows wander alongside elk, antelope, wild horses, fox, a wide variety of birds and other wildlife and are herded the traditional way; on horseback. No loud motors or ATVs to scare the cows. Electricity on the ranch is provided by solar panels and harvested rain water supplements the scarce water supplies out on the range. When the cows reach appropriate weight, the Mechenbier's move the cows to their small family-owned feedlot in nearby Valencia

Four Daughters Ranch is DEDICATED to compassionate animal welfare, environmental stewardship and AFFORDABLE,

QUALITY BEEF

Ownership of the finish lot means that the Mechenbier Family makes sure that cows are well-fed and cared for throughout their lives. This is a far different experience for the animals from conventional feedlot meat production methods. Along with their grain finishing, this family's attention to the details of animal care is what provides the exceptional flavor of Four Daughters beef. Creating Options in Flavor and Value Since the cows are not transported long distances to a finish lot, their stress levels and resulting illnesses as well as the cortisol levels in their meat are low, making Four Daughters beef a higher quality, delicious product. The marbling that is created by the grain finishing adds to the traditional flavor that some people find missing in grassfed, grass-finished beef. La Montañita Co-op is pleased to be able to expand markets for another hardworking New Mexico ranching family in addition to our long-time friends at Sweet Grass Cooperative. The Mechenbier family's process that finishes on grain in a small family owned feed yard, is less costly than grass finishing. Working with the Mechenbier's allows La Montañita to pass on production costs savings to our owners and shoppers while expanding our flavor and value offerings in the beef products we carry. Four Daughters Ranch provides a consistently high quality product throughout the year. Our growing relationship with Four Daughters Ranch helps us maintain our dedication to the very best in New Mexico raised and processed beef as we provide access to a high quality local product at a great value price. Look for special pricing on a wide variety of traditional and specialty cuts of delicious Four Daughters beef at your favorite Co-op meat counter; just in time for your Mother's Day and other merry month of May grilling adventures.

BEAUTY AND FLAVOR

MERRY MONTH OF MAY EDIBLE FLOWERS BY JR RIEGEL he warmer months are approaching, and with them comes the annual peak of plant productivity. The best months for picking up local produce at the Co-op are ahead of us still, but many of our gardens are already kicking into gear and putting up shoots, leaves, and depending on the plant, possibly flowers. We may not yet have the hefty fruits and veggies that come later in the growing season, but there is plenty to enjoy before those start filling out. It’s a great time for spring greens and fast-growing cool weather crops like radishes, but this time of year offers something less commonly enjoyed too—an array of tasty, colorful flowers.

T

There are a number of reasons that flowers are a rare sight on dinner plates, but that just makes it all the more impactful when they’re included. The beautiful elegance of their delicate forms and riotous colors can immediately transform a dish into something completely new. In many cases, they contribute subtle, interesting flavors as well. With all they can do as a food, one would think they’d be used much more frequently. Because there isn’t much of an established market for edible flowers, you are pretty much on your own for producing food-safe flowers. Store-bought flowers are often laden with pesticides to ensure they grow blemish-free, even if they’re organic (OMRI-certified pesticides are still pesticides, though of course they’re not as bad). Different varieties of a plant can have significant differences in floral flavor, so even if you’re sure something is pesticide-free, you still might be gambling with its taste. More importantly though, many flowers are used medicinally, and if you’re not after those medicinal effects, you might be in for an unexpected side effect when you eat them. The absolute most important thing to know when selecting a flower to chow down on is whether or not it’s actually edible. While there are some plants whose every part is edible, there are even more plants with some edible bits and some bits to be avoided (and of course, there are many plants of which no parts should be eaten). Some flowers, such as apple blossoms, can be eaten only in moderation (they contain cyanide precursors, though it’s fine to eat just a few). The key to eating flowers is to do plenty of research before you take a bite. I’ll include a couple of helpful websites at the end of this article.

oughly, beat an egg white until it’s slightly foamy. Using a small paint brush, completely coat a petal in egg white and then sprinkle it with superfine sugar (grind up some granulated sugar in a food processor) until it’s thoroughly coated. Lay the coated petals on a wire rack to dry, or alternatively use an empty egg carton and place them in such a way that they dry with some dimension rather than This time of year flat. Be sure you let them dry fully—it can take up to 36 hours. offers something less

commonly enjoyed too—an array of

TASTY,

COLORFUL FLOWERS!

So, you’ve done your research, ensured you have pesticide-free flowers (pick them in the morning for best results), and now you’re ready to eat them. What’s the next step? You can eat them as-is, but they are more impactful when used in concert with other ingredients or techniques. In most cases, you’ll first want to remove the stamen and pistil and very gently wash the flowers (there are some flowers, such as elderberry, that you don’t want to wash because you’ll lose their flavor—that’s where the research comes in). Once that’s done, you can do all sorts of stuff. One of my favorite things to do is to make ice cubes, each with a single flower inside. Boil the water for a couple minutes first to remove dissolved gasses, let it cool to room temperature, place a flower in each compartment in your ice cube tray, and then fill each compartment half full with the water. Let this freeze, fill with water the rest of the way, and then freeze it again. This two step freezing ensures the flower is embedded in the center of the ice. The finished cubes look great in cocktails, but they’re nice in water too! One of the simplest options is a lightly dressed salad with flowers on top. This lets their flavor stand out more than many other preparations, and it makes for an exceptionally beautiful salad. If you’re willing to put in a bit of prep time for some great dessert additions, it’s not too difficult to candy flower petals. After separating the petals and letting them dry thor-

As for which flowers to use, I’d suggest reviewing what you have available and researching if it’s a viable option. Some tasty flowers that are pretty common in home gardens include violets, arugula, pansies, nasturtium, and rose. Many common herbs have edible flowers as well, usually with a similar but milder flavor to the herb. Try eating the flowers of rosemary, chives, oregano, mint and thyme.

For more information and resources on edible flowers in your garden, visit: www.bit.ly/NCSUflowers eattheweeds.com/edible-flowers-part-one/ www.brit.co/edible-flower-recipes

MAY

7–8, 10AM–4PM

Herbfest 2016 offers herbs, wildflowers, native plants and arts and crafts for sale; a speaker program; guided bird and nature walks; live music; bird ID with the Audubon Society; live birds with Wildlife Rescue; crafts for kids; a plant sale and refreshments.

ANNUAL HERBFEST RIO GRANDE NATURE CENTER www.rgnc.org


CO-OP NEWS

May 2016 6

DOUBLE UP FOOD BUCKS BOARD STUDY SESSION ON MAY 17

food education and access, La Montañita believes it has found a way to level the playing field in our current local food movement.

COMMUNITY EDUCATION SERIES:

ACCESS TO FOOD AND INFORMATION BY JEFF HERTZ ccess to food and access to information go hand in hand—that is why La Montañita Co-op is cordially inviting you to attend this month’s Community Educational Series at the Immanuel Presbyterian Church at 5:30pm on May 17 to join our Board of Directors to discuss the rolling out of the cooperative’s Double Up Food Bucks program. The the mechanics of the program from the customer side is quite easy, for every $10 of SNAP benefits that you spend on locally grown food, you will receive a $5.00 discount on that purchase. The technicalities of the program from the grocer’s side is quite complex. In order to optimize the effectiveness of this food access initiative, La Montañita wants to use this month’s Board Study to provide member-owners and the community with as much information about the implementation of the program as possible as well as provide an opportunity for management and the Board of Directors to coordinate their efforts.

A

Access has always been one of the most critical Ends policies for La Montañita’s Board of Directors throughout its 40 years of operation—yet, as consistent as the cooperative has been in providing the community with healthy, organic, and locally-grown foods, it has struggled providing this same quality product assortment to lower income populations. Identifying appropriate marketing methods, strategies, and channels for reaching these populations is sometimes an even more difficult task. At the intersection of the cooperative’s Ends policies dedicated to

Lucy McDermott and Denise Miller of the New Mexico Farmers Market Association (NMFMA) have worked closely with La Montañita staff in order to initiate this program and Lucy will be giving a presentation at the Board of Directors meeting on May 17th, in which she will share experiences implementing the Double Up Food Bucks program among various farmers markets throughout the state. She will also discuss their experiences of advocating for the program at the state legislature and how La Montañita Coop can help secure funding for next year’s state budget. As tight as the state budget was this year (as result of extremely low oil and gas prices), legislators on both sides of the aisle recognized the true value of Double Up Food Bucks by appropriating $390,300 of the state budget toward this match program for SNAP participants. This program has both an economic and a social impact on the community in two ways: it helps New Mexico’s low-income residents improve their nutrition, and it helps local farmers, ranchers, and other direct market food producers increase their sales while stimulating the local economy. Double Up Food Bucks also has long-term economic implications in the way it promises the spending match of more than $2 million in federal dollars over the next four years (through the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive, or FINI, Grant Program). While securing consistent state and federal funding is a huge accomplishment for New Mexico’s food community, it only makes it that much more important for La Montañita members and the community at large to utilize this program at the local level! Over the years, it has been a hard fight secur-

LEXINGTON CO-OP MARKET: FOSTERING THE LOCAL

COOPERATIVE COMMUNITY P6: COOPERATION AMONG COOPERATIVES BY BEN SELDEN, LOCAL ENTERPRISE ASSISTANCE FUND (LEAF) ooperatives do not exist in a vacuum. Community members form co-ops out of common interests and needs, and this new space, in turn, becomes an established resource for future iterations of the process. This month, we look at how an established cooperative can help grow and nurture startup co-ops and drive positive change in a neighborhood.

C

The Lexington Real Foods Community Co-op was founded in 1971 and has long been a staple of West Buffalo. LEAF has had a long history with the co-op. In 2004, LEAF helped finance part of a $3 million project to relocate to a new 7,500 sq. ft. store. The relocation was extremely successful, and the co-op is now in the final stages of opening a second store in Buffalo, with financing help from LEAF and others. Buffalo has a rich history of cooperative culture reaching back to the 1960s and ‘70s, which resulted in multiple credit unions and agricultural cooperatives that exist today. In the past few years, cooperatives have again seen a revival in popularity both nationally and in Buffalo. “Lots of people are wanting to start

co-ops in a way they haven’t in the last forty years” said Tim Bartlett, General Manager of Lexington. “We haven’t seen a wave of co-ops like this since the early ‘70s.” One Buffalo co-op from this new wave is BreadHive, a worker-owned artisanal bakery with a wholesale kitchen in West Buffalo. They opened in April 2014, selling long-ferment sourdough bread, bagels, granola, and soft pretzels to customers through a retail window, as well as in bulk to several local restaurants and grocery stores. Their yeasty delights became an instant hit, gaining attention in local blogs, magazines, and newspapers. BreadHive currently provides goods to three grocery stores—the largest being Lexington Cooperative Market—as well as numerous restaurants and breweries in the surrounding area. Lexington Co-op gave BreadHive’s original worker-owners a $5,000 start-up grant, as well as technical and financial support, and, of course, room on their shelves to sell their bread! When BreadHive made the decision to open up a second retail location in 2016, Bartlett referred them to LEAF for financing. One of BreadHive founding co-owners, Emily Stewart, said support from Lexington and LEAF “has provided the stepping stone we needed to move our business and the worker cooperative model forward.” As BreadHive continues to grow, Emily and the

ing funding for the Double Up Food Bucks program, but with this year’s program expanding to over 70 retail sites, including farmers’ markets, farm stands, grocery stores, mobile markets, and Community Supported Agriculture outlets, La Montañita’s growing customer base and membership has a great opportunity to utilize a market-driven strategy to leverage long-term public investment. A recent policy brief by New Mexico Voices for Children reported that SNAP benefits not only improve food security but also directly added $630 million to the New Mexico economy in 2014. In general, the USDA estimates that every $5 spent in SNAP benefits generate $9 in local economic activity. Private market forces and public government intervention have continually interacted in ways that put quality food beyond the reach of lower income populations, but the Double Up Food Bucks program proves that these same forces can also be used to bring it back within their grasp.

LY TIVE I S O PS P CO-O CT

A UNITIES IMP M COM THE SERVE THEY

other co-owners hope to pay it forward by their business becoming a co-op incubator itself. “They’ve made it a priority to have each of their owners on co-op boards to broaden their perspective on what a co-op can do or be,” said Bartlett. Lexington’s support of BreadHive is just one example of how co-ops can support one another to further the growth and success of a cooperative economy. Bartlett spoke to this commitment: “For as long as I’ve been involved with the [Lexington] Co-op, it’s been part of our mission to build or nurture the co-op economy and the local economy.” Lexington Co-op formalized this goal into a central tenet: “A thriving co-op in every community that wants one.” Lexington Co-op has offered consulting and financial support to other co-ops, such as board training to the East Aurora Co-op Market (a food co-op opening soon 20 miles from Buffalo), and Urban Roots, a co-op community garden. Lexington’s strategy of giving accessible and honest advice, technical support, and small grants provides enterprising young co-ops with a supportive backdrop that eases them out of the start-up phase and into the regional co-operative economy. A young worker coop needs committed and hardworking owners to be successful, but they don’t have to do it alone!

THE HARWOOD SUMMER CAMP is an adventure in innovative art-making and performing and visual arts. Open to children Grades 1-9 Sessions begin June 6 and run every two weeks through July 29th. Family membership discounts and financial aid are available. To register go to: www.HarwoodArtCenter.or g or call 505-242-6367.

HARWOOD ART CENTER SUMMER

ART CAMP

The Harwood Art Center is located at 1114 7th Street NW, in Albuquerque.

LETTER TO THE

EDITOR

DEAR CO-OP NEWS READERS, I'm delighted with the aggressive moves to lower prices at the Co-op. While prices on comparable superb quality food are not out of line with other providers, I would like to do most of my shopping at the Co-op and not just make special trips for expensive heirloom tomatoes and other luxuries while doing the majority of my shopping at Smith's, Sprouts, Trader Joe's, etc. Providing pretty good reasonably priced organic and even some non-organic products (carrying "clean 15" items, for example) would let me make the Co-op my main store. Which I would love.

UNLEASH

IMAGINATIONS

In that direction, one of the things our competitors are doing is to use house brands—Trader Joe's of course is all house brands, but Smith's has Simple

Truth, Whole Foods has 365, and so on. For generic staples like tofu, soy milk, non-GMO but not organic canola oil, and so on, this makes sense. The competition's fierce—Smith's (Krogers) house brand is very good. I'm glad we're getting into the game with Field Day instead of just fading off into hyper-politically-correct irrelevance. I've been noticing the value (both Field Day and produce), and so has everyone I've talked with. I commented to some friends that Co-op prices seem to be getting better, and people say, "Yeah, I've noticed that too. I got a great deal on something yesterday." We who have been pushing against the system (whole foods vs. over-processed crap) for years or sometimes decades are used to being outsiders and tend to be a bit touchy. Let's stay all science-y and data driven—if people are buying the stuff, and if more people are using the Co-op, let's stay with this approach. BEST WISHES, STEVE ZABINSKY


CO-OP NEWS

May 2016 7

A BUSY MONTH AT OUR CO-OP FROM THE

GENERAL MANAGER BY DENNIS HANLEY It's been a busy month at our Co-op. Marshall Kovitz: A Friend and a Leader We are all deeply saddened by the passing of our board member Marshall Kovitz. Many of you knew Marshall as a founder and long time Co-op leader who contributed 40 years of service to La Montañita. Although I knew Marshall for only 5 months, he made an incredible impact on me and I will forever treasure my time with him. Throughout his passing he retained his good humor and deep compassion for all of us who loved him and for the Co-op that he shepherded through the decades. We were all blessed to have him in our lives and I hope you had the opportunity to meet, work and engage with this fine man of courage and inspiration! He remains alive in our hearts and in the spirit of Co-op he loved. Produce Departments: Quality, Assortment and Value Our produce departments continue to expand quality, assortment and value. These produce department changes are necessary for the organization’s long-term viability and came as a result of customer feedback that we were priced high and not accessible to many families. With membership trending downward—it’s about 17,000 today, down about 1,000—from its peak in the Fall of 2015, the Board of Directors organized a series of cafe-style meetings with members in Albuquerque and Santa Fe. An estimated 300 people took part, and a recurring complaint emerged: prices were too high. Over the last few months, we began increasing a few conventional produce items known as the Clean 15 to provide price point options for our shoppers. Many of the local produce items we previously carried were not certified organic and from time to time we offered a few other conventional produce items to provide a full assortment of fruit

and vegetables. La Montañita has specifically incorporated nonorganic versions of eggplant, avocados and other fruits and vegetables identified by the Environmental Working Group as the “Clean 15” for having the lowest or no pesticide residues in tests. Offering some lower-priced conventional products makes it more affordable for some people to shop the Co-op. We are receiving many positive comments from our team members and memberowners, and sales of these products are telling us that people do appreciate having these lower-priced options. We are working to make La Montañita more accessible for healthy choices and are introducing Double Up Food Bucks this month. This initiative is a way for EBT customers to buy more local New Mexico-grown produce. Such tweaks also make the Co-op, currently celebrating our 40th anniversary, more competitive in an increasingly crowded natural foods marketplace. We know that our average member, based on our annual member survey, shops at least two or three other locations on a regular basis based on price and assortment. The new additions haven’t come at the expense of organic offerings. When this process began a few months ago, La Montañita had an estimated 130 organic produce items. Now it has about double that, with a goal of hitting 300 organic produce items on a regular basis. The lowered prices on our organic selections came through buying power. When I came to the Co-op we created a process with produce department teams in which we began buying produce for all six locations together, rather than having each store do its own purchasing. This economy of scale helped us get better prices on organic produce. All we’re trying to do is have access to healthy choices for our customers. For our dedicated core shopper and others who want only organic, we will continue to lead the way in the marketplace. Shoppers will find what they are looking for as well as having many more choices. More great deals are coming on organic produce and the introduction of the national Co-op based private label “Field Day”—all natural and organ-

May Calendar

of Events 5/14 Healthy Home Cleaning Workshop Westside Co-op, see page 4 5/17 Community Education Series DOUBLE UP FOOD BUCKS, Immanuel Presbyterian Church, 5:30pm 5/17 BOD Meeting Immanuel Presbyterian Church, 6:30pm 5/23 Member Engagement Meeting Co-op Admin. Offices, 5:30pm

CO-OPS: A Solution-Based System A cooperative 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.

ic products. These Field Day products provide great value and will help us continue to get our prices in line. Union Activity We were served a Union petition from the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) at our Rio Grande store. We fully embrace, support and respect their right to investigate if the union is right for them. We have held nine meetings to answer questions and educate the staff on the Co-op’s position on unionization. We felt we needed to provide a press release as there were inaccurate documents claiming we were not supportive of our team's right to unionize circulating. We reiterate here that we are in full support of their rights consistent with the standards established by law. Our news release also noted our Co-op's commitment to “democratic control, autonomy and independence, education, information and training and concern for the community.” We care deeply about our Co-op team members, often thinking of ourselves as a cooperative family dedicated to Co-op principles and values, and we make every effort to create a work with dignity atmosphere for all. With Rio Grande store staff voting for unionization, we are now in contract negotiations with UFCW. We continue to believe that our cooperative values and principles and our dedication to them provides the healthiest and most supportive workplace available. As always I look forward to hearing from you. Please get in touch anytime at: dennis.hanley@lamontanita.coop.

CO-OP DISTRIBUTION CENTER GROWING THE LOCAL ECONOMY ONE FARMER, ONE BUSINESS AT A TIME SERVING LOCAL PRODUCERS AND BUSINESSES CENTRAL NEW MEXICO

The Grove Cafe and Market Address: 600 Central Ave. SE, Suite A, ABQ Phone: 505-248-9800 Website: www.thegrovemarket.com When Started: July 2006 Specialties: Local and organic foods, breakfast, brunch and lunch What we buy from the CDC: Eggs, milk, buckwheat, quinoa, oats, other grains, dairy, beef, pork and vegetables. They say: We are delighted to be a cornerstone of the community to enjoy good food among friends & family. It's a pleasure working with a company such as the Co-op who supports our vision of sourcing the best ingredients for our cafe & customers.

THESE BUSINESSES ARE VALUED CUSTOMERS OF THE

CO-OP

DISTRIBUTION CENTER

NORTHERN NEW MEXICO

State Capital Kitchen Address: 500 Sandoval st. Santa Fe, NM Phone: 505-467-8237 Website: www.statecapitalkitchen.com When Started: February 19, 2016 Specialities: Artisinal American Dim Sum What we buy from the CDC: Mary’s Organic Chicken and Duck, Kaiser Pork, Sweet Grass Beef and Bison. They say: Come try the newest restaurant in town!

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.


Sunday brunch

MAY DAY 5.01 • MOTHER’S DAY 5.08 • 135TH DAY OF THE YEAR 5.15 NATIONAL BUY A MUSICAL INSTRUMENT DAY 5.22 NATIONAL DIGESTIVE HEALTH DAY 5.29

1

st

New Mexico grocery store to offer this special program to EBT shoppers

2 for 1

• providing more healthy fruit & vegetables to shoppers on a limited income while expanding the local food economy.

LA MONTAÑITA CO-OP

party on & have some fun in may with these choice recipes using exceptional ingredients from la montañita.

ORGANIC MAMA VEGGIE FRITATTA www.organicvalley.coop

1 tsp butter 1 medium red onion, chopped 1 large red bell pepper, chopped 2 cups spinach leaves, torn 9 large brown eggs 1/2 tsp black pepper 1 cup chopped tomatoes 1/4 tsp paprika 1 T chopped basil 1/2 cup feta cheese crumbles

BAKED APPLE PIE TAQUITOS WITH CINNAMON

SERVE WITH KYZER FARM NEW MEXICO PORK SAUSAGE

Preheat oven to 350º F. Oil a 9 x 12” casserole dish with coconut oil and set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine apples, flour, 1/4 cup coconut sugar, lemon, coconut oil, 1/2 cup water, 2 teaspoons cinnamon and nutmeg.

COMMUNITY EDUCATION SERIES: DOUBLE UP FOOD BUCKS with Lucy McDermott, Double Up Food Bucks Coordinator for the Santa Fe Farmers’ Marketing Assoc.

Tuesday, May17th at 5:30 pm Immanuel Presbyterian Church across from the Nob Hill Co-op’s back door. More on Double Up Food Bucks and healthy food access on pg 7.

www.epicurious.com

6 T olive oil, divided 1 medium leek, white and pale green parts only, chopped 1/2 tsp kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 1 cup grated peeled squash (such as butternut or kabocha) 1 large egg 3/4 cup chickpea flour 1/4 tsp baking powder 1/2 cup plain yogurt 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)

16, 4” flour tortillas 4 cups apple, peeled and finely diced 2 T whole wheat flour 1/4 cup + 3 tsp coconut sugar Squeeze of lemon 1 T coconut oil 1/2 cup + 2 T water 3 tsp ground cinnamon, divided 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg 8 medjool dates, pitted Pinch of salt

Because La Montañita is able to provide a wide variety “"Nothing is more of New Mexico-grown produce in our stores, we will important than our be part of the Double Up Food Bucks program, which New Mexico enables customers who use SNAP EBT Card dollars growers, farmers and to purchasew fresh NM-grown fruits and vegetables local businesses." to double their purchase dollars on those fruits and — Dennis Hanley, La Montañita’s veggies. This program began at all La Montañita General Manager. locations on May 1.

CHICKPEA PANCAKES WITH LEEKS, SQUASH & YOGURT

Preheat oven to 400° F. Wash and tear spinach, chop and shred all other veggies. Whisk eggs, sea salt, pepper and paprika in a medium bowl to blend. Grease the inside of a 9” baking pan with butter. Add prepared vegetables and egg mixture, leaving some tomatoes aside. Stir gently to combine. Bake at 400° for 35 minutes or until fluffy, golden and set in the middle. Sprinkle with tomatoes, fresh basil and feta crumbles.

ORGANIC GRILLED, STUFFED PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS

www.simplyorganic.com/recipes

DOUBLE UP FOOD BUCKS: Growing Access to Healthy Local Produce BUY ONE • GET ONE Improving Nutrition, Reducing Hunger

with the stem sides down. Make sure the grill is coated with coconut butter or cooking spray. Cook each side for 5 minutes (or until soft). Add the tomato mixture into the mushroom caps, cook until the cheese melts.

Turn heat to medium-high and let mixture cook down until a thick sauce forms (about 5 to 7 minutes), stirring

www.organics.com

often. The apples should still be a bit crunchy at this point. Prep taquitos by placing 1 to 2 tablespoons of the apple pie mixture into the middle of each 4” tortilla. Tightly roll up each tortilla to create a taquito and place into the casserole dish. In a small bowl, mix together remaining coconut sugar and cinnamon. Rub tops of taquitos with coconut oil. Sprinkle tops of taquitos with cinnamon sugar. Bake for 35–40 minutes. In a high-speed food processor combine dates, remaining water and salt. Process on high until a paste forms. Add more water if needed. Cool and serve with date caramel and ice cream.

don’t forget the flowers !

Organic portobello mushroom caps 1 tsp organic olive oil or raw coconut butter 1 tsp organic fresh parsley, minced Organic black pepper 1 T of fresh organic lemon juice Organic garlic clove, crushed Finely chopped organic rosemary Diced organic tomatoes Organic shredded mozzarella cheese Heat up the grill, toaster oven (about 375º F) or oiled skillet. Combine the tomatoes, cheese, oil, rosemary and garlic in a small bowl. Remove the dark gills (edible) from the mushroom and the stem. Discard them. Combine 1/2 teaspoon of oil and lemon juice. Brush the mushroom inside and out. Add the mushroom caps to the grill,

choose from our beautiful assortments of fair trade & local flowers

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet, preferably nonstick, at medium-high. Add leek, season with kosher salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally until leek is softened and starting to brown, about 4 minutes. Add squash and season again. Cook, stirring often, until squash is cooked through and softened, about 4 minutes. Transfer vegetables to a plate and let cool. Wipe out skillet and reserve. Meanwhile, whisk egg, chickpea flour, baking powder, 1 tablespoon oil, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/2 cup water in a medium bowl. Season with pepper and let sit 5 minutes for flour to hydrate. Stir vegetables into batter just to coat. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in reserved skillet over medium-high. Add batter by the 1/4-cupful to make 4 pancakes, gently flattening to about 1/4” thick. Batter should spread easily—if it doesn’t, thin with a little water. Cook until bottoms are lightly browned and bubbles form on top (4 minutes). Use a spatula to carefully flip pancakes over and cook until browned and cooked through (2 minutes or longer). Transfer to a plate and tent with a sheet of foil to keep warm. Repeat with another 1 1/2 T oil and remaining batter. Serve pancakes topped with yogurt, parsley, sea salt and pepper. Do ahead: Leek and squash can be cooked 2 days ahead; cover and chill. Batter can be made 1 day ahead; cover and chill.


SPRING INTO FLAVOR

May 2016 10

PICNIC FAVORITES REDUX SWEET POTATO SALAD Serves 8 / Prep time: 15 minutes A twist on the old-fashioned potato salad, this recipe is perfect for a do-ahead dish to take along to a potluck or picnic because it is best served at room temperature. 1 medium to large sweet potato, cut into 1/2 to 1 inch cubes (about 3 cups) 1/4 cup dried apricots, sliced 1/2 cup pecans, chopped 1/2 cup pineapple tidbits, drained Dressing 1/2 cup orange juice concentrate, thawed 1 tablespoon honey 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg 1/2 teaspoon salt Place the sweet potato cubes in a medium sauce pan, cover with water and simmer for 8 minutes until the sweet potato is just tender. Add the sweet potato to a large mixing bowl and cool completely. Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl, add the thawed orange juice concentrate, honey, ginger, nutmeg and salt. Mix well. If needed, you can warm this slightly so the honey will incorporate. Add the apricots, pecans, pineapple tidbits and the honey-orange dressing to the cooled sweet potato cubes and gently mix. Refrigerate overnight for the flavors to blend. Serve at room temperature. NUTRITION INFORMATION: Calories 110; Calories from fat 43; Total fat 5g; Saturated fat 0g; Trans Fat 0g; Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 156mg; Total carbohydrate 17g; Dietary Fiber 2g; Sugars 12g; Protein 1g

MARINATED LENTIL SALAD Serves 6 / Prep time: 15 minutes I have taken this salad with me on an all-day hike before. The brilliant flavors are especially tasty eaten in the outof-doors. It can be made ahead, and it’s a great take along. 1 cup green lentils, cooked 1 cup raw cauliflower, diced 1/2 red onion, minced 1 carrot, diced small 1/4 cup cilantro, minced 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 2 teaspoons garlic powder Juice of 1 lime Feta cheese to taste Combine all the ingredients. Serve chilled or at room temperature. NUTRITION INFORMATION: Calories 84; Calories from fat 25; Total fat 3g; Saturated fat 2g; Trans Fat 0g; Cholesterol 11mg; Sodium 128mg; Total carbohydrate 12g; Dietary Fiber 4g; Sugars 3g; Protein 5g DEVILED EGGS Serves 6 / Prep time: 15 minutes / Cook time 30 minutes Deviled eggs are my favorite way to use up surplus eggs and one of my favorite dishes to bring to a picnic. Sometimes, I keep back a dozen eggs just for this purpose (beware, fresh eggs are much harder to peel when hard boiled). My grandmother’s deviled eggs were always my favorite. And, of course, she didn’t follow a recipe. But I made sure to watch her carefully, and here is how she did it. 6 eggs, preferably a few weeks old Water to cover 1 heaping tablespoon mayonnaise 1 tablespoon yellow mustard 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon white cane sugar 2–3 teaspoons pickle juice (the important “secret” ingredient) Paprika powder for garnish To hard boil the eggs, place the eggs in a large sauce pan


SPRING INTO FLAVOR NUTRITION INFORMATION: Calories 96; Calories from fat 65; Total fat 7g; Saturated fat 2g; Trans Fat 0g; Cholesterol 188mg; Sodium 295mg; Total carbohydrate 0g; Dietary Fiber 0g; Sugars 0g; Protein 3g SKILLET CORNBREAD Serves 10 / Prep time: 15 minutes / Cook time: 25 minutes This is pretty much the best cornbread ever. The perfect balance of salty, sweet, moisture and corn flavor. The recipe is from: www.marthastewart.com/281154/skillet-cornbread 4 tablespoons butter 2 cups stone-ground yellow cornmeal 1 tablespoon sugar 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 2 large eggs 2 cups low-fat buttermilk and cover with cold water. With the lid on, bring the water to a full boil on high. Uncover and boil for two minutes. Place the lid back on the pot, and leaving the pot there, turn off the burner. Let stand for 20 minutes. Drain off the hot water and cover the eggs again with cold water and set aside. When the eggs are cool enough to touch, place them in a container in the refrigerator until they are thoroughly cooled.

Preheat oven to 425°F. Put butter in a 9” cast-iron skillet (or a 9” square baking pan). Place in the oven until butter is melted and the pan is heated through, 3–5 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk cornmeal, sugar, baking soda, and salt and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and buttermilk.

Peel the hard boiled eggs. Gently pat them dry with a clean towel. Cut them in half lengthwise and carefully remove the yolks to a small mixing bowl, being careful to not break the whites of the eggs. Set aside the whites on a plate.

Carefully remove the hot skillet from the oven and immediately pour butter into the buttermilk mixture and whisk to combine. Stir the cornmeal mixture into the buttermilk mixture until just moistened. Scrape the batter into the hot skillet and bake until golden, about 25 minutes. Let cool at least 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

In the mixing bowl, mash the egg yolks well with a fork and add the remaining ingredients (minus the paprika). Using the fork, mix well, making sure there are no lumps. You can vary the consistency by varying the amount of pickle juice you use. Using a teaspoon, gently fill the egg whites with the yolk mixture and sprinkle on a generous amount of paprika for garnish. Keep the deviled eggs refrigerated until you’re ready to serve them.

NUTRITION INFORMATION: Calories 168; Calories from fat 61; Total fat 7g; Saturated fat 4g; Trans Fat 0g; Cholesterol 51mg; Sodium 627mg; Total carbohydrate 22g; Dietary Fiber 2g; Sugars 4g; Protein 4g

May 2016 11


MOTHER’S DAY SPECIAL

May 2016 12

COOKING WITH

CAST IRON BY SHARON NIEDERMAN believe in cast iron. My cast iron collection is like a scrapbook of my travels around New Mexico. That little frying pan, just big enough to fry an egg, I found for $12 at a second hand store in Farmington. That grill pan I special ordered from the Ace Hardware in Questa. And that Dutch oven—I paid $7 for at a junk store in Clayton. I took it home, scrubbed off the rust, seasoned it with Crisco and baked it at 250° for three hours, just like the cornbread pan, salvaged from a garage sale. The best of the lot, the twelve-inch Griswold skillet, seasoned to a fine onyx finish, is a hundred-year-old heirloom that belonged to my husband’s grandparents, homesteaders in Taos Junction. My comal may have been designed to cook tortillas, but I cook everything in it—bacon, chicken, pancakes, omelettes, stir-fries and grilled cheese sandwiches.

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Durable, easy to clean with soap and water, even-heating, with the ability to keep food hot and improve with age, cast iron is the original “oven-to-table” ware—simple, strong, and practical, like the people who relied on it. And it has the health benefits of imparting more iron into your diet. My one stipulation is to avoid cooking foods based with tomato or anything acidic. I was fortunate to learn about cast iron cooking from Jane Shafer of the Shafer-Gallacher Ranch in the Lincoln County malpais. She was the family cook and knew how to juggle six enormous pots on a metal grate over an open cedar fire as she prepared lunch for a dozen hungry cowboys. She could cook biscuits or cobbler in a Dutch oven by placing hot coals on the lid. “You can cook anything in a Dutch oven,” she said. “Nothing cooks better or keeps food hot longer.” A descendant of artillery, the first cast iron pots date to 1707, and had three legs to balance on the open fire. In 1896, the Lodge family built

CAST IRON THE ORIGINAL OVEN-TO-TABLE WARE— SIMPLE, STRONG AND

PRACTICAL their first foundry in Tennessee. So long as you keep your cast iron well-seasoned, avoid using abrasive scrubbers, and dry it well over a low flame, you can continue using it forever. If you want to get fancy, you may acquire a pretty enamel-covered Dutch oven, in red, yellow or turquoise. I keep threatening to do that, but it hasn’t happened yet. Jane Shafer’s Arroz con Pollo Saute one chopped onion with 2 large chopped garlic cloves. Add one cut-up chicken; keep stirring until brown. Add 2 cups rice and 1 large can V8 juice. Refill the can with water, add and keep stirring. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer. Add 1 cup chopped green chile, 1 can black olives, and 2 cans green peas. Season with oregano and cumin, salt and pepper to taste (here I add 1 teaspoon smoked paprika). Add 1 teaspoon red chile. Cover and simmer for 1 hour or until rice is tender. Serve with beans and a salad. (Recipe from New Mexico’s Tasty Traditions: Recollections, Recipes and Photos by Sharon Niederman). Black Pot Sourdough Biscuits This recipe comes from Dave Harkness, a food historian and cast iron aficionado from Las Cruces. He offers classes and demos at Ft. Selden Monument and the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum.

TAKING TIME FOR TEA:

WHAT MOMS REALLY

WANT BY AMYLEE UDELL hat do mothers really want? Sorry, I can't really tell you definitively. A few years back one mom said she couldn't imagine NOT being with her kid on Mother's Day and that was counter to the whole point. As I snapped out of my breakfastin-bed followed by silent Spa Day fantasy, I tilted my head to one side and managed to mutter something like, "Oh, OK..." We all consider celebrating motherhood in different ways, I realized. For me, the occasional break from motherhood helps me stay sane and be present and just plain nicer to my kids when I'm with them. One way I've been able to do this over the years is to set aside time with my mom friends for tea. Perhaps it sounds antiquated, but we don't (regularly) wear hats or gloves and each event really has it's own style and flavor, depending on the group and the host.

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THE ONLY REQUIREMENTS ARE: • We all commit to take a turn hosting • The host provides the tea • Everyone brings something homemade

LA MONTAÑITA

FUND:

LOW COST LOANS FOR NEW MEXICAN

FOOD PRODUCERS

MICRO-LOAN PROGRAM For information call or e-mail Robin at: 505-217-2027, toll free at 877-775-2667 or robins@lamontanita.coop.

IS

2 cups AP flour, plus more for rolling 2 teaspoons baking powder 1 tablespoon salt 1/4 cup bacon fat, leaf lard or vegan shortening 1 cup sourdough starter 1/3 cup canned evaporated milk Preheat ungreased lidded Dutch oven to 450°F or preheat oven to 400°F. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and toss to mix. Rub in fat until mixture resembles coarse meal. In a separate small bowl, add evaporated milk to sourdough starter, then add this to larger bowl. Quick mix with a fork until moist. Do not overmix. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured board and pat into 10-inch circle. Cut 8 to 12 biscuits and place in bottom of Dutch oven or on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. (Recipe from The New Mexico Farm Table Cookbook: 100 Home Grown Recipes from the Land of Enchantment by Sharon Niederman, photos by Kitty Leaken). Dave explains: How to Make Your Own Sourdough Starter Mix equal amounts of flour and water in a bowl and leave it exposed to air in a warm area in the kitchen. Stir the starter every eight hours. Within a few days it should start to develop bubbles. Then feed it equal amounts of flour and water for two or three days. Store in a Mason jar or ceramic crock. SHARON NIEDERMAN is a food and travel writer, restaurant reviewer and photographer who divides her time between Albuquerque and northern NM.

recipe requirements if you so choose. My group has always kept the requirement simple—something homemade. No stopping at the convenience store on your way over! It's the bit of thought and preparation that makes gathering for tea so special.

Other suggestions for a successful group include: • Planning on about once a month but understanding it will more likely be every 6–8 weeks. • Allowing for co-hosting. Sometimes a very small home or a family situation There are MANY makes it difficult for someone to host in DIFFERENT their house. In this case, someone else could host in their home and the other WAYS host could do most of the organizing and TO CELEBRATE perhaps provide the tea or setting. I don't MOTHER’S have a tea set, but I do have a lovely and DAY! large tea pot. A friend has a set, but no Having tea is one! pot. So we have teamed up. • Set your "formality" expectations. I've been in one group where we did try to dress up a bit, and another where jeans were okay. Both are fine and just dependent on the group. SOME THINGS THAT ARE NOT REQUIRED: • Consider visiting a tea room in town for the tea expe• Matching tea settings rience. It's not cheap, but it gives folks and idea of how • A fancy teapot tea can be served. It's also a nice occasional indulgence • Tablecloths, starched napkins, a "real" table. for the group, as no one has to host. And everything just Card tables are OK! looks so pretty. • Knowledge of particular teas or tea etiquette • Check out La Montañita Co-op’s large variety of teas • Raised pinky fingers and grab what strikes your fancy. We often try to pro• Three tiered serving towers, a la St. James Tea vide a variety and include non-caffeinated options for Room anyone who likes that. • Give some thought to the savory and sweet ratio. If you'd like to gather your tribe, cultivate your With my current group, we leave this to chance and tribe, build your tribe or support your tribe, conhave so far fared well. You can even look up the tradisider starting a tea group. It's a great way to build tional courses, serving order and suggested dishes, if a support system and nourish each other. My curyou like. rent group has women from all different stages of The beauty of tea is that it is an affordable way to have life, but we share church membership, as well as a a special gathering and focus on each other and your recent unexpected trial that we've helped each relationships. There is no music, there are no screens, other weather. Your tribe could be anything and there are no children—the only distractions are tasty should contain relationships that benefit you and treats and flavorful tea. You put your love and apprecipeople you want to get to know better. You can ation for these friends into what you prepare and nourmeet for no reason except to visit with each other ish each other in so many ways. Whether you have chilor you can work around holidays or special occadren of your own or not, we all deserve a break from sions. Tea groups are a great way to build commulife's stresses to receive such nourishment. If you do nity with friends who share similar food values OR have children, Happy Mother's Day! share your own food values. Your group can have


FOOD AND FARMING

May 2016 13

ANIMAL-FREE

potash, due to the deep rooting foraging of the legumes. The soil fauna has improved dramatically with better health of the seventy odd crops that we grow for our 300 per week box scheme [the European name for Community Supported Agriculture]."

FLASH IN THE PAN

AGRICULTURE By Ari LeVaux he case against eating meat has been gaining traction in recent years, for numerous reasons. Livestock production is responsible for 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions according to the UN, which has recommended that people eat less meat in order to curb global warming. The World Health Organization last year announced that red meat probably causes cancer. As global hunger becomes exacerbated by a growing population, animal products are being called out for being inefficient sources of nutrition, due to the relatively high amount of energy, land, and water that is used to produce them compared to socalled "plant-based" foods. Various ethical considerations related to the raising and killing of animals have led many people to pursue other options as well.

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Not all meat and animal products carry the same baggage. A freezer full of wild deer meat, for example, isn't having the same impact on the earth, and on the meat eater, as a Wendy's burger. And the deer in the freezer most certainly lived a better life than the cow in that burger. But the majority of consumers don't have access to enough hunting or fishing opportunities to meet their needs (or desires) for meat. So for the sake of argument, let's imagine that most of the meat being sold is as bad as the worst-case scenarios predict. Lets suppose that the collective will exists to create a shift in the human diet to one that is plant-based, and that animals will be phased out of the American agriculture system. In the context of this vegan-topia, I have a nagging question: who is going to make the poop? Manure, you've probably heard, is widespread in agriculture, especially organic agriculture. The same is true for other animal-based products like blood meal, bone meal, and fish meal, all of which are popular in nearly all agricultural schemes. So if that farmers market tomato or kale is produced in an earthy cocktail of blood, bone and excrement, how animal-free is

that salad? Indeed, many of these soil amendments are byproducts of the ugliest side of animal production, the confined animal feeding operations, or CAFOs. That, indisputably, is the way it is. But does it have to be that way? Veganic Agriculture No, according to enthusiasts of a type of food production known as animal-free agriculture. While it isn't widely known or practiced, animal-free (also known as stock-free or veganic) agriculture is definitely a thing. In the UK there is even a "StockFree" certification program. The premise is simple. Fertility is managed by the production of "green manures," or plants that are grown specifically to be composted or plowed back into the soil. There is a certain elegance to this. An animal like a cow that eats nothing but plants is essentially just a living plant composter, turning those plants into meat, bones, blood and manure. Why not remove the animal from the equation in favor of other composting tactics to produce that fertilizer? And why not eat the plants themselves, rather than the methane-spewing, exploited beasts that eat it? In these respects, a plant-based agriculture and diet seem like they could be more efficient. According to Iain Tolhurst, of Tolhurst Organics in South Oxfordshire, it is indeed more efficient. His animal-free methods are good for the soil, he says in an article on the website stockfreeorganic.net. "Regular soil analysis has shown that we are steadily improving fertility, especially phosphate and

Tolhurst was inspired by vague reports he'd heard of ancient Chinese farmers feeding millions of people with extensive use of green manures, rather than animals. His farm is living proof that animal-free agriculture is possible, and he believes the principles can be scaled up to larger operations as well. "It's not just small intensive units such as ours who can make this system work, the big boys can play this game too," he says, citing research on potatoes and grains. But many small-scale organic farmers, even ones who are sympathetic to the negative aspects of meat and its production, are nonetheless skeptical of the need to go as far as to remove animals from ecological loops that have existed for as long as agriculture. While the majority of ecologically-oriented farmers believe there is nothing wrong with incorporating welltreated animals into an agriculture system, you would be hard-pressed to find one who is OK with the fact that their sacks of animal-based powders come from CAFOs. If vegans can have their animal-free utopian fantasy, proponents of ecological agriculture systems that make careful use of animals have theirs as well. In this vision, CAFOs and mega farms will be replaced by a patchwork of smaller farms, intensively managed by a sea of hard working yeoman and women. And each of these small farms would raise a few animals as part of its own closed loop. Systems like this could still produce meat, but there would be less of it. As an eater and lover of meat, as well as a concerned environmentalist, I'm partial to the small scale approaches that incorporate animals. But I'm intrigued and supportive of the promise of animal-free agriculture as well. Either path forward would be preferable to the current industrial, CAFO-based system. But as things stand today, we all need to accept that all food, not just meat, is tied to feedlots and slaughterhouses. If you're not cool with this, vegans, then for the time being you'd better move to England.


FOOD NEWS

May 2016 14

THE SOLUTION IS EASY... EXCEPT WHEN IT

IS NOT

BRETT BAKKER ow often have you heard people say that organic food costs more? Well, yeah, if you’re talking about money directly out of your wallet to buy the stuff. What’s rarely discussed is the cost and effect of environmental contamination and cleanup as well as human contamination and subsequent healthcare expense. We (the conspiratorial “we”: co-op / organic food shoppers) already know about those “hidden” costs but that’s another topic altogether, one that takes time to help the uninitiated understand that poison in your food is not really a great idea. Unless of course you’re a thrill seeker and want to try Fugu, that blowfish sashimi which contains deadly toxins if not handled correctly. But I digress…

BY

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Vegans notwithstanding, the idea of clean organic milk for the kids appeals to moms of any persuasion (which is why that item is among the top sellers in organics) so there’s a start to this conversation. But it still smacks of hippie philosophy to many so let’s get back to my opening line here: wallets. That’s what seems to be on most people’s minds these days when domestic politics come up: jobs, i.e. money, and how no one has enough. Yes, it’s true that money talks. And, gee, is it loud! So let’s say you go to your local co-op or natural chain emporium and you pick up a pile of raw organic stuff: grains, flours, nuts, seeds, fruit and vegies. You’re probably not going to find, say, amaranth flour or Tat Soi at the nonorganic grocery chain but generally you will find a lot of raw stuff there, albeit in nonorganic form. And it will be cheaper. But have you (I have; I’m nosey) looked into the cart of the average person shopping in these nonorganic chains? These carts are not full of rice and vegies but pre-packaged kids’ lunch trays, yogurt-like substance in a tube, salted puffy snack things and bright-

NEVER MIND ly colored bottles of bubbleized water with incredible amounts of sugar. How much do those things cost per pound or serving? Heck, regular ol’ potato chips are approaching five bucks a pound!

the FACT that nonorganic “food” is largely backed by mega-subsidy bucks from USDA which comes out of

(Y)OUR TAXES...

Or take one of those lunch trays: bread, meat-like substance, a slice of something sorta resembling cheese… you could actually assemble one yourself of organic ingredients at less cost. Except… the cost of time which is what most nonorganic shoppers are paying for: convenience. Let’s break this down: the nonorganic food itself is not more expensive but the packaging and “time savings” is. Never mind that fact that nonorganic “food” is largely backed by mega-subsidy bucks from USDA which comes out of (y)our taxes; that’s yet another deep discussion the average person is not really ready for. Oh and besides that, corporate welfare is ok, just don’t help individuals. Eep, here I am digressing again… While unprocessed raw organic food is typically more expensive than raw nonorganic food, processed nonorganic food is way more expensive and although it fills bellies with calories, it does not do the same with nutrition. Processed organic food is variable: some is more

’areSHROOMS good for you!

expensive than processed nonorganic food, some is cheaper and some is about the same. So great! There’s your winning argument in favor of unprocessed organics… except… time. Paying for time (convenience) is the real motivator to buy ready-to-eat swill. As The Pretenders sang, “it’s Time the Avenger” that makes all the difference. In disadvantaged neighborhoods, how do you convince someone who has neither spare time nor much money (crummy low-paying jobs in other words, which require longer hours for a barely adequate income) to put more on their figurative plates so they can put, nutritionally speaking, more on their dinner plates? Despite the organic sections in nonorganic grocery chains, many urban and rural folks don’t even have a nearby store that carries any kind of good food, be it organic or merely “natural”. This is where the discussion gets into the politics of food and food distribution, of corporate hand-outs, of income inequality, of education, of public transportation… more than we could ever get into here. I have ideas but I’d probably be labeled a commie (which, to be fair, is not far from the truth). All I ask is that we all consider (and reconsider) the seemingly cut-and-dry solutions (like the cost discussion above) that those of us who are “better off” can at times be a bit smug about.

MUSHROOMS compare favorably with MOST vegetables as far as

NUTRITIVE VALUE and

FLAVOR,

TEXTURE

AND MEDICINE TOMAS KUJAT, A MYCOPHILE t’s difficult being a mycophile in a culture of mycophobic people. We’ve learned not to eat rhubarb leaves, or potatoes when they’re green. But when it comes to fungi, most people would rather not learn too much. And with the wide variety of wildcrafted and domestic mushrooms available, that’s a shame. BY

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Twenty years ago when I seriously wanted to discover a way to learn more about wild mushrooms, I spotted a bumper sticker, “Mycologists are Fun gi’s”, The owner of that car was a member of the North American Mycological Association and the mushroom poisoning consultant for the local hospital. She became my mushroom mentor, and my travels through woods and fields searching for and identifying wild mushrooms began. Mushrooms have long been esteemed for their pleasant flavor and texture in much of the world. But the question has often been raised, “But do they have any nutritive value?” In general it seems safe to say that in addition to their value in flavoring dishes, mushrooms com-

pare favorably with most vegetables as far as nutritive value and vitamin content. The white button mushroom (Agaricus bisporus species) that most people are familiar with, and which is available almost everywhere, has a surprising cornucopia of vitamins and minerals. According to the USDA, this mushroom contains Vitamins C, D, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, B6, ascorbic acid and pantothenic acid as well as the minerals of iron, zinc, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, copper and (a rare one) selenium. They are also comprised of 3% protein, 6% carbohydrate and only 0.4% soluble fat. The shiitake mushroom, which is becoming more popular in the US, has been a symbol of longevity in Asia for over 6,000 years. Not only is this mycological gem a culinary favorite but it is also a “heavy” in the medicinal category. “The World’s Healthiest Foods” website lists it as an immune system booster and cardiovascular disease protector (especially pertaining to arteriosclerosis). Just an 8 oz. serving provides an astounding recommended daily allowance of 72% copper, 52% pantothenic acid, 33% selenium, and 6% choline. My favorite, however, in both the culinary and medicinal area is the maitake. Eaten in Asia for 1,000 years, this mushroom, according to Webmd.com, is

VITAMIN

used to treat cancer and relieve the side effects of chemotherapy. In addition, it is of proven benefit with HIV/aids, chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and weight loss and control.

The Queen/King of medicinal mushrooms is still, however, the reishi. The reishi was rated number one on ancient Chinese lists of superior medicines and touted as a substance that would give eternal youth and longevity. Though edible, it is very tough and fibrous and best ingested in capsule form. For over 2,000 years it has been extensively studied and found to mitigate symptoms of allergies, inflammation, cancer, chemotherapy, diabetes and gastrointestinal difficulties, to name a few.

CONTENT

As a note of caution: although raw mushrooms are often found on restaurant salad bars, cooking is necessary to dissipate toxins known as hydrazine’s. Hydrazines are a group of chemical compounds that are known to be carcinogenic. As well, cooking breaks down the mycochitin walls (similar to the cellulose walls of vegetables) releasing the nutrients. The best way I’ve found to cook culinary mushrooms for maximum flavor and nutrition is to sauté them in a covered skillet with a small amount of water, stirring occasionally until they are done. All of these delicious and health benefiting miracles of nature are available at our local La Montañita Co-op. Ro D’Attilio, the produce Team Leader at our North Valley store has a talent and passion for stocking all the aforementioned mushrooms and then some. So check them out, bag some up, and be adventurous with mushrooms. Experiment with adding them to different recipes. You will be amazed by what you have been missing.

SANTA FE GREEN CHAMBER

AT EL MUSEO/SANTE FE RAILYARD

This year the festival will feature presentations on all things green and sustainable including: green home design, materials and technologies, electric and plug-in vehicles, renewable energy technologies, green products and services, water conservation and harvesting, exhibits for kids, organic food and fair trade art.

The third annual Green Festival gives green and local businesses an opportunity to display and promote their products and services to the community. Last year, this event was a tremendous success and will be held again this year in conjunction with the Santa Fe Farmers' Market at El Museo in the Railyard.

Santa Fe's Green Chamber works locally to build a sustainable community that is environmentally sound, economically viable and socially responsible, through action, advocacy and education. For more information go to www.nmgreenchamber.com or email: glenn@nmgreenchamber.com.

GREEN FESTIVAL MAY 14 8AM–3PM


COMMUNITY FORUM

May 2016 15

ALBUQUERQUE FOLK FESTIVAL 18TH ANNUAL JUNE

LOW

PRICES!

FREE

ADMITTANCE TO THE

4

PARKING!

BALLOON

FREE CAMPING! FREE MUSEUM

BY ROSE DAY aurie Lewis and Tom Rozum, headline at the 18th annual Albuquerque Folk Festival along with Growling Old Men and The Mike + Ruthy Band. Back by popular demand are Ryanhood from Tucson. Also performing are The Bill Hearne Trio, Noseeums from Taos, Antonia Apodoca from Las Vegas, NM, and Maria y Yahví of Las Cruces/El Paso. Other New Mexican and regional performers include Cactus Tractor, Lone Piñon, and Bayou Seco Duo.

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Designed to be fully participatory and family-oriented, the Festival attendees will experience a myriad of opportunities to learn how to sing, dance, play instruments, to jam with other musicians, and to simply enjoy the extensive variety of entertainment offer-

ings. Planet Music, which provides instruments from around the world for children and others to play as well as participatory workshops in song, play, dance, and storytelling, will offer a full day of activities for the entire family. Also available: free instrument check room, free bike valet, band scramble, and air conditioned spaces to cool off. Chairs are provided. Local crafts, food, and beverage vendors will be available, including beer from local brewery and eating areas. Buy or sell an instrument at the consignment booth. The festival presents 120 non-stop events at 15 different venues at the Anderson-Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum on Saturday, June 4, from 10:30am to 11pm. Texas singer-songwriter Ray Wiley Hubbard is featured at a fundraising kick-off concert on Friday evening at the Balloon Museum. The Saturday evening Contradance (hosted by FolkMADS) features the award-winning Albuquerque MegaBand. Dances are taught by a FolkMADS dance caller. There is also an evening international folk dance. The Saturday evening Sing-along, begun in 2010, was inaugurated with a tribute to Pete Seeger. We will continue to celebrate other themes for joyful sharing again. Organized with the dedicated support and assistance of over 600 presenters and volunteer staff, the Albuquerque

Folk Festival provides an opportunity for the public to experience and participate in folk music, song, dance, and storytelling through educational workshops, kids workshops and activities, demonstrations and performances. Workshops start at 10:30 am and typically end around 5:30. Folk activities enhance community expression and the continuance of cultural traditions. The ABQ Folk Festival is held at the The AndersonAbruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum, 9201 Balloon Museum Dr. NE, Albuquerque. Turn north off Alameda. Enjoy free parking and free camping with jamming on Friday night, June 3 through noon on Sunday, June 5. Tickets are available online from www.abqfolkfest.org and $15 advanced tickets are also available from the following: Albuquerque: Apple Mountain Music, Baum's Music, Grumpy's Guitars, Guitar Vista, Marc's Guitar Center, Music Go Round, Music Mart; West Side: Frame-n-Art; Santa Fe: Candyman Strings and Things, High Desert Guitars; Los Alamos: Otowi Station Bookstore. At the gate, ticket prices are $20 for adults, $5 for kids 12–17 , $15 Seniors and Military and Students 18–25 with ID. Children under 12 free. Evening shows and dances are $15. Parking and camping are free. Detailed information is available from the website www.abqfolkfest.org, or call 505-301-2822.

ONE WORLD CO-OP

ufacturing of solar PV and battery storage has its own environmental footprint.

CREATING OPPORTUNITIES

We invite you to join One World Co-op, a workerowned community co-op modeled after Mondragon and Albuquerque’s La Montañita Co-op. For more information go to: www.oneworld.coop

WHERE NONE PREVIOUSLY EXISTED

Please join us in our efforts to create a sustainable world for the future. “At One World Co-op, we create opportunity where none previously existed.” –Mark Mitchell, McCune Solar Works PV Production Engineer

BY CHUCK MCCUNE USING CONSERVATION AND RENEWABLE ENERGY ARE OUR RESPONSIBILITIES, EACH AND EVERY ONE OF US.

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olar and green energy solutions are often viewed as a left wing or liberal issue. For us it is simply a good product at a good price for a good purpose. It’s good business, it's that simple. We are promoting common sense in our approach to energy. In fact we are actually promoting “un-common sense.” We are evolutionary rather than revolutionary. We must, as a society, conserve energy in order to have any quality of life future at all. We are more powerful when we are power “less.” As you come to understand the culture at One World Co-op, you’ll also come to appreciate that our business model is uniquely in keeping with these challenging environmental and economic times. Our PV Production Engineer Mark Mitchell may have best described this phenomenon when he observed recently that we “create opportunities where none previously existed.” Those opportunities are embedded in our relationships with customers and co-op members. And that’s only one reason we expect our co-op to double its growth in the next year as we help people take back their own power. For instance, we understand that people of limited means often cannot afford solar PV and battery storage. At One World Co-op, we make these systems more affordable to those who may otherwise be unable to attain energy independence, while One World Co-op offers monthly workshops in conservation, solar PV, battery technology and all things energy. Sure, we believe in what we’re selling and, like any other company, we’d like you to buy our products.

NATIONAL RIVER CLEANUP MAY

21

BY KENT SWANSON CITY OF ALBUQUERQUE OPEN SPACE DIVISION There are over 50 miles of shoreline in the Rio Grande Valley State Park. The third weekend of May each year, the Albuquerque Open Space Division, American Rivers, REI and other organizations host National River Cleanup Day. This one-day event brings the Albuquerque community together to restore the Rio’s beauty and health. Volunteers will help remove trash from the Rio Grande and its Bosque at the Central Avenue Bridge and at various places along the river.

But more importantly, we are long-standing environmental activists, and as activists, we advocate for the elimination of ecocidal energy production. Our primary goal, therefore, is to help customers cut their consumption. We want our community and our clients to challenge the current ecocidal energy model and to learn how to boycott ecocide. And, given the opportunity, we’ll show you exactly how to participate in this endeavor. In doing so, you will not only increase your own personal economic stability, but you’ll be promoting green living and global sustainability. Toward that end, we don’t want (or need) to sell you anything but essentials. We’re acutely aware that, while the footprint of solar is far smaller than that of energy produced from nuclear/fossil fuels (and without the inherent calamity of ongoing environmental degradation), the man-

THE

ARTOF THE FLOWER AN EXHIBITION OF PRINTS, DRAWINGS AND PAINTINGS

JUNE

13–JULY 23

SOLAR: A COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO OUR

ENERGYFUTURE

WHEN: May 21 from 8am until 1pm WHAT: During this one-day event volunteers help remove trash from the Rio Grande and its bosque. WHERE: The northwest side of the Central Avenue Bridge at Central and Tingley. Parking spaces are limited, so please carpool! For more details see www.cabq.gov/openspace. The event is free. REGISTRATION: All volunteers must register with REI at www.rei.com/albuquerque or by calling 2471191. All River Cleanup volunteers are treated to morning refreshments, a door prize drawing and a free after event picnic. For more information on other volunteer opportunities with Open Space, call 505-452-5200 or visit www.cabq.gov/openspace.

CALL FOR ENTRIES ENTRY DEADLINE: MAY 6 Entries from artists living and working in New Mexico who are 18 years or older will be juried by the New Mexico Art League Committee. Entries accepted of: original artwork in painting and drawing mediums and original edition prints. For more information email Buffy at: bnelson.newmexicoartleague@gmail.com


La Montañita Co-op Connection News, May 2016  
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