November 2014 Newsletter



Reminder, as we near Thanksgiving: Tomorrow, Wednesday, the Co-op is open as usual 5-9PM!

The Co-op Board is grateful to all our members, who are co-owners, for their consistent hard work, support, patience, and faith in the Greene Hill Food Co-op, which keeps the store functioning and the mission alive. WE are the Co-op. There is no ‘they.’ And we have an amazing co-op when we all participate. THANK YOU and have a wonderful holiday.

In this issue

Gobble, gobble! Come to the Co-op for holiday treats. Want to include a delicious squash side dish? Organic? But of course! Check out our recipes below. And what about a fresh cut of hormone-free pork or beef? We’ve started Refrigeration Mondays! What do we have that Paris and Brussels do not? A fabulous food co-op! Read on about our visitors from across the pond who came to check out how we do it here at Greene Hill. We’re holding General Meetings at the Co-op now. Come and join us on December 3rd! And, of course, scroll way down to find new great ways to work your shift.

Next General Meeting: December 3rd (Wednesday), 7:30-9:30pm at the storeDo you have questions or concern about the Co-op? At each General Meeting, there is time for members to bring these up. Join us on December 3rd (Wednesday), at 18 Putnam Ave. from 7:30-9:30 pm (Note the change in time) and don’t hold back! We will discuss the new Point of Sales (POS) system, hear from the Governance Committee, and the Marketing Committee will present their new improved and very expansive plan. You might be eligible for work credit for your attendance. A special bonus: even though the Co-op closes at 9pm on Wednesdays you can shop after the GM if you attend. Of course the big, big reason to come to a GM: it’s so important that we all participate in running our Co-op.

For more details, check out the meeting agenda.

Agenda Committee meeting

The November Agenda Committee Meeting - The Board of Directors meets in our then uninsulated expansion space with guests Joe Holtz and Ann Herpel of Park Slope Food Coop. Seated is Keith Almon and Rachelle Faroul. In the back row is Sean Mullane, DK Holland, Jeannie Hamilton, Joe and Ann, Allison Stewart, store coordinator Lauryl Berger-Chun, Renée Bergan and William Laviano.

Hopefully coats and wooly mittens will no longer be necessary: insulation is, thankfully, being installed by the Design/Build Committee.

Photo by Tim Hamilton.

Greene Hill Co-Op NewsGreene Hill Food Co-op Product Survey!

The Merchandising Committee wants to hear from YOU! We want to be sure we are sourcing the best products for our members, and we need your feedback. If you fill out this survey by the end of November, you'll be entered to win a $20 store credit to the Co-op!

Reminder to fill out Work Shift Survey

Members! As you may have seen from a survey sent out recently, we are considering increasing our work shift requirement and implementing a stronger missed shift policy. If you have not yet, please take a moment to fill out this survey so we can get your opinion on this matter!

BOTH SURVEYS CLOSE ON NOV. 30th, vote now before it’s too late!

Product Spotlight: Notes from the Meat Freezer

North fork potato chips

We Have New Beef!

Beef from the Adirondack Grazers Cooperative will now be available at the Co-op.

Refrigeration Mondays!

The new beef, lamb, and potentially other cuts will be kept in the fridge next to the meat freezer when it arrives on Mondays, and will be transferred to the freezer on Wednesday before closing.

Special Orders:

Special ordering through the co-op works for meat too! We don't have any butchers in our neighborhood, so if there are specific cuts or quantities you are seeking, we can work with our vendors to find what you need.

Whole Pork Shoulders available.

We have several whole pork shoulders 8-12 lbs each that came from the Piggery and are in the store and available for purchase. Pricing is approximately 5.70 per lb.

Co-op members - please email with anything else meat-related.

Recipe: Squash

roasted squash

We have gorgeous acorn squash in the Greene Hill produce stand. Here is a recipe with tips to prepare it. This technique is easy and delicious and the curry spices have the added benefit of having anti-inflammatory properties. It would also work on any other kind of squash - butternut, kabocha, delicata or even pumpkin. Be sure to save the seeds! Instructions for roasting those below the recipe.

Serves 2 as part of a main course or 4 as a side dish


  • 1 acorn squash, about 1 1/2 pounds
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon each of ground turmeric, ground chili, ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ground white pepper (or black is fine too)
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Set the squash on its side and, with a large knife, cut in half vertically. Trim a piece off the bottom of each squash half so they will lie flat in the pan. Scrape out the seeds and stringy membranes with a large spoon and set aside. Place cavity-side-up in a large roasting pan.
  3. Mix the olive oil and honey in a small bowl until blended. Blend all spices together in a small bowl. Fill each squash cavity with 1 tablespoon of the oil and honey mixture. Season with salt and curry spice blend. Bake until the squash is very tender, about an hour.

Roasting squash seeds

Use your roasted seeds in salads, as a soup garnish or as a yummy snack on their own.

Step 1: Rinse and Dry

Rinse the seeds in a strainer, rubbing them between your fingers to loosen any pulp. Scatter the seeds on a clean towel to dry for a few hours, or until they are dry to the touch.

Step 3: Season

Toss with a bit of oil and salt or the curry spice mix from the roasted squash.

Step 4: Roast

Pre-heat the oven to 300 degrees F.

Place the seeds on a baking sheet and roast for about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring them every 5 minutes or so. Remove once they’re golden brown.

Photo by Sara Cornish

The Co-op Q&A: Louise, Quintin, and Martin, co-op researchers from Belgium

Group photo>A group of Belgians recently came to Brooklyn to learn about the different kinds of food co-ops here. We will be featured in their documentary, which they’ll bring back to their organization as they begin considering what kind of co-op they want to build. Since they interviewed us, we decided to interview them. So we met with Louise, Quentin, and Martin on Saturday, just before they left to explore the food co-ops of Montreal.

Photo by Sara Cornish

How long have you been here in Brooklyn and what co-ops are you focusing on?

L: We’ve been here for one week visiting other food co-ops, including the co-ops in Park Slope, Lefferts Gardens, Bushwick, and Flatbush. We will stay for a few more days and then go to Montreal.


How did you choose Brooklyn?

Q: We were initially interested in the Park Slope Food Coop. We’ve been in contact with someone in Paris who is setting up a co-op based on their model. That organizer made a short movie about the Park Slope Food Coop (and they’re now working on a full length feature) so we decided to go there. In researching we discovered there were other co-ops in Brooklyn.

M: In Belgium we were wondering what kind of membership model we would choose. It was interesting for us to see co-ops that are open to everyone (like the ones in Bushwick, Flatbush, and Lefferts Gardens), and co-ops only open to their members (Greene Hill and Park Slope).

Are there food co-ops in Belgium?

L: No, this kind of model - a cooperative of consumers - doesn’t exist. It’s more common to see organic farmers organizing into a producer cooperative.

Q: We have a lot of CSAs and buying clubs for fresh produce. We are starting out now with a buying club with goals of offering more dry goods and eventually starting a food co-op that could be a one-stop-shop.

What brought you together to start this project?

LM: At the beginning we started as a group of friends who cared about sustainable agriculture, social and ecological issues. Our group kept growing, and at one point, we decided to start this project. There is a big team in Belgium waiting for our feedback!

QC: We care about environmental issues but also about how to make good food affordable for all income levels. We came to the conclusion that we would need to build a market that could hold a bigger volume of food so that we get fairer prices.

When you return, you’ll show your group the film footage and interviews you’ve collected. What will your documentary focus on?

LM: Two big parts: we compare and contrast each kind of co-op, and also collect more detailed information about the logistics of each co-op.

Can you explain what the food system is like in Belgium?

QC: Every week there are 70 farms that disappear in Europe. The bigger farms grow intensive monocultures while the smaller farmers grow a diversity of vegetables.

LM: So there’s two opposite trends: the larger farms, who are influenced and supported by European politics with grant money. And then there’s the smaller community-centered farms who are supported by consumers like us who want better quality foods and better livelihoods for the farmers.

What are some differences you see between our agriculture issues and yours?

Q: The difference between organic produce and conventional is smaller in Belgium than it is here. There aren’t GMOs in Belgium, for instance.

We are also facing different economic challenges. In Belgium, supermarkets mark up their prices just 25%. In the US, we learned that prices get marked up 75-100%. So if we want to get a good discount for our co-op members, it’s not only about worker members working. We will have to find a way to get the cheapest food at best quality without putting pressure on producers.

Help WantedAll members work a 2 hour shift every 4 weeks. It's part of being a member /owner. Here are some opportunities to earn work credit.

Seeking IT Committee Members

The IT Committee is looking for new members for both in and out of store tasks. We are looking for IT individuals who are willing to work in the store, to troubleshoot new and existing challenges with the POS machines and network. Individuals who have experience with LAMP (Linux/Apache/MySql/PHP) applications, Drupal, CiviCRM, Wordpress, Linux server administration, or network setup and administration would also be an asset to the Committee. If you are interested or have questions please send them to:

Merchandise committee looking for new members

Would you like more say in what the Co-op stocks and sells? The Merchandise committee is looking for new members to work on the exciting task of selecting and ordering everything that goes on the Co-op's shelves. Experience in grocery or restaurant work is a plus, but not at all necessary. If you're interested, contact

Membership Committee Seeks Co-chairs

This is an opportunity for at least two members to join a third and help collectively chair our vibrant membership committee for a given amount of time. The Committee leads several key areas, and it would be great to have at least three members lead each area. For those interested, there would be a transition time available now through mid-December with Nick. Please email with your questions or for more information. It will be very important to fill these roles as soon as possible.

Members needed to join interim Hiring Team!

The Co-op is looking for a few qualified members with HR and management experience to join our interim Hiring Committee as we search for a permanent Store Coordinator. Ideally these members will have a good understanding of our store operations. This small team will work in conjunction with the Board. This is a short term position which will function from now until Feb. 2014. If you feel you are qualified and/or interested in this position, please email

Marketing Committee Coordinator & Co-Chair needed

If you have experience with communications, marketing strategy, community outreach and design, please consider joining the Marketing Committee as a Co-chair or Coordinator. These leaders will lead on committee admin (correspondence, meetings, approval of hours) and project management (design/branding, campaigns, website etc). A lot of this work can be done from home, but we do hope you are familiar with the neighborhood and passionate about the Co-op's mission. Email if interested or with any questions.

Finance Team Coordinator

The number of members doing Co-op Finance work has doubled over the past year, which means we need a member to help us keep organized, coordinate the teams doing the different financial tasks, schedule meetings, keep track of progress on projects and respond to/redirect Finance e-mail messages. If you'd like to learn more about the financial side of Greene Hill, and relish the challenge of coordinating the work of a couple dozen members, then this job's for you!! No prior financial experience is needed. And except for Finance meetings, you could do all your work from home. Please e-mail if you're interested.

Et cetera

Credits: Recipe and acorn squash photo credit Sara Cornish. Bio photos courtesy their subjects.

The Greene Hill Food Co-op Newsletter is edited and published by (in alphabetical order) Anna Avrekh, Carola Burroughs, Roxanne Earley, Sonia Garbesputzel, Debbie Grossman, Alexandra Miller, and Amy Nazer. Contact us with any feedback, suggestions, or requests at

Join or follow the Greene Hill Food Co-op!

Interested in joining the Greene Hill Food Co-op? Check out our website to learn about membership, like us on Facebook, or stop by our store at 18 Putnam Ave. (off Grand Ave.) with any questions!