June 2016 Newsletter

 

THE GREENE HILL FOOD COOP - JUNE 2016 NEWSLETTER

Catching You Up on Co-op News

Great news! In May, we added 51 new trial members and 4 new member-owners! Over the first 5 months of 2016, we have welcomed 38 new member-owners. That is an increase of 39% over the same time period in January, in which we only added 23 new member-owners! We are on the right trajectory, but as we head into the slower summer months, we need YOUR help to keep up this momentum. We will be announcing some promotions for the summer months which will include a waived admin. fee for Lettuce and Avocado plan sign-ups as well as a referral bonus for any current member-owners who refer new members. Help us reach our goal of 400 active members by the end of the year -- we’re only 30 away from that number, which means we only need 5 new members a month!

New to the Co-op? Want to know more about how we work? Our next New Member Orientation is July 10, 2:30 pm to 3:30 pm at the Co-op. You can also join the latest discussions about the store at our next quarterly General Meeting on Wednesday, June 22, from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm.

Have no fear! We’ve got your burger needs covered. From grass-fed beef to ground turkey to veggie versions, the Co-op has a variety of sustainably-sourced and delicious options for your next barbeque. Read more in this month’s Product Spotlight: The Best Burgers (Beef, Turkey or Veggie). And for another summery dinner delight, check out Molly’s recipe for barley risotto with ratatouille.

In this month’s Co-op Q&A meet shift leader Nathan Albert and learn about his love of punk rock and filling bulk bins. Then check out the latest in our new Social Justice in Brooklyn section of the newsletter.

Looking for a new way to fulfill your work shift requirement? Want to pick up an extra shift? Check out the Help Wanted section. The Co-op is seeking folks with a range of interests and skills, including designers, writers, developers, and people who can help take inventory and keep our finances in order.

Open House Membership Success!

Membership is pleased to report that at the Open House on June 11, we welcomed 7 new member-owners! All of these new signups were drawn in by the special we ran in which we waived the admin fee. In addition, 10 people from the community decided to give us a test run by signing up for a trial membership. That’s almost 20% of the new members we’ve added in the past 5 months!

What’s Up Next at the Co-op?

meetingOur next quarterly General Meeting will be on Wednesday, June 22, from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm, at the Co-op (18 Putnam Avenue). Check out the agenda here. Our next monthly Greene Hill Food Co-op Board Meeting will be on Wednesday, July 27 -- same time and place. Both meetings are open to ALL members. General Meetings tend to cover broad topics of interest. You can get a sense for the content of the meetings by reviewing the meeting notes here.

 Product Spotlight: The Best Burgers (Beef, Turkey or Veggie) veggie burger with slaw

The summer season is upon us and that, of course, means it's time for barbecues with family and friends. Whether you’re interested in a grass-fed beef burger, prefer a poultry version or want your burgers to taste like vegetables, the Co-op has what you’re looking for. Here are a few highlights of what we've been stocking for you to bring home or to your next barbecue:

Hudson Valley Harvest regularly supplies us with many different cuts of meat as well as ground beef and ground pork. All of their animals are pasture-based and no preventative antibiotics or appetite stimulants are used on them. Hudson Valley Harvest beef and pork comes from a variety of Hudson Valley farms, and you can read more about their beef and pork standards and practices here.

Stonewood Farm ground turkey meat is raised on Stonewood Farm in Orwell, Vermont. The turkeys are all vegetable- and whole-grain-fed and there are no added hormones, antibiotics or animal by-products used on them. They are grown slowly so they are naturally juicy and flavorful. As their founder Paul Stone said, the secret to their delicious turkeys is "plenty of Vermont air, cold nights, good feed and tender loving care on our family farm.” Check out their Stonewood Farm turkey burger recipe here. With a touch of zucchini, basil and cheese, it's just perfect for summer.

For those looking for a meatless burger, try Made by Lukas Fresh Veggie Burgers, a frozen ready-to-shape veggie burger mix. It's packed with vegetables and has seeds, quinoa and spices mixed in. Here is one of their recipes for a veggie burger with sesame coleslaw (the pic featured above). The burger can be cooked right on the grill. If you want an even quicker fix, check out Hilary's pre-shaped and packed veggie burgers, also in our freezer section.

Some other quality ground meat choices on our shelves are ground, grass-fed beef from Hardwick Beef of Jericho, Vermont, and ground bison brought to us from Perry County, PA through Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative (LFFC). You probably know about LFFC because it's where we get much of our produce, and you can find out more about their meat sources here.

Look for these products in the store’s fridges or freezers. If you ever don't see what you're looking for, ask if there's more of it in the back. Happy grilling!

Barley Risotto with Ratatouille Recipe by Molly Neuman

Ratatouille

This surprising combination of dishes creates a really hearty main course or side. I caught it originally on an episode of Simply Ming. Ratatouille is a great summer dish and this duo can be served hot, warm, room temp or cold! A real win!

Serves 4-6.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup barley
  • 1 large white onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 stalk of fennel, small dice (skip if no fennel available)
  • 1 eggplant, cubed
  • 1 zucchini, cubed
  • 1 red bell pepper, cubed
  • 3 medium tomatoes, cubed
  • 2 cups vegetable stock, more as needed
  • ¼ cup sherry vinegar (optional)
  • 2 T fresh basil leaves, chiffonade (finely shredded), with extra sprigs for garnish
  • 3 t salt
  • 2 t pepper
  • 1 T butter
  • ½ cup shredded parmesan

Toast barley in a dry saute pan until medium brown, then set aside. In the same pan, add 3 tablespoons oil and swirl to coat. Add onions, fennel (if you have it) and garlic and sweat over medium heat to soften season with salt and pepper, cook 2-3 minutes. Remove half of the onion mixture from pan and set aside. To the pan, add eggplant, zucchini, pepper, and tomato and season with salt and pepper. Sauté till soft, stirring frequently, about 15 minutes. Add basil. Toss. Transfer to a bowl and keep hot.

Heat stock and vinegar in a pot and set aside. In the saute pan, return reserved onion/garlic mix, barley and bring to heat and ladle ½ cup of hot stock and vinegar. Cook until liquid is almost completely evaporated. Keep adding stock in ¼ cup increments until barley is cooked through and creamy, about 15-20 minutes (it could take longer, so be sure to taste to see if the barley is done). Add butter and cheese, stir to completely combine. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.

Flatten barley evenly in pan. Top with an even layer of ratatouille. Garnish with basil sprigs. Serve family style directly from the pan.

Cost estimate? Just $2-3 per serving.

The Co-op Q&A with Nathan AlbertNathan and recycling bins

Nathan Albert is a shift leader who enjoys filling bulk bins for a surprising reason. Read more to find out about this punk rock, community-involved member!

Q: Where are you from?

A: I split my childhood between Queens and Long Island, and I currently live in Prospect Heights.

Q: What were some of your reasons for joining Greene Hill Co-op?

A: I joined the Co-op in March 2014 after I heard about it through a friend and realized it would be a great way to eat healthier, save money, and get more involved in the community.

Q: What are your roles at the Co-op?

A: I'm currently a shift leader and work mid-day shifts on Week A Sundays, but every once in awhile I pick up other shifts if I'm not too busy.

Q: What do you like best about being a member of the Co-op?

A: My favorite thing about working at the Co-op is probably when I get to pour all 25 pounds of a bag of quinoa into an empty gravity bin and experience autonomous sensory meridian response, or ASMR. It is a little bit of a hassle to fill bulk bins, and it often requires two people and a quiet spell at the store, but the reward is definitely worth it.

I also like getting to talk to my neighbors about the food they are buying and what they intend to do with it, and I love the gratification in playing a tiny part in building up this great community resource, whether that means ringing up a rare $150 basket or trying my best to get informed/involved at meetings.

Q: What do you like to do outside of the Co-op?

A: The two activities that take up the most time in my non-Co-op life are my job working for the city doing public outreach, and playing in a punk band with my partner and fellow Co-op member/devotee, Kate.

Q: What are some things you're looking forward to within the Co-op, or currently love about the Co-op?

A: I'm most looking forward to the Co-op starting to the reap the benefits of financial and personnel stability, as I understand we're just about out of the doldrums of the past couple of years and we're starting to see healthy sales and membership growth. So that means more consistent stocking and staffing in the store, as well as a slow and steady march towards seven-day store hours. It's been awesome to trace a drastic improvement over the past year.

Q: Where would you like to see the Co-op in five years? Ten?

A: In five years, besides a natural expansion of our product options, I would love to see the Co-op take on a greater role in the community as a commons for political discourse and change. We could educate our community better about food justice and healthy eating, become more transparent about the products we stock, hold public events and workshops in the expansion space/backyard/Putnam Plaza, and mobilize our membership towards other political struggles that affect us, for example, actively resisting the insidious real estate forces in the area that are pushing out our neighbors, and frankly, destabilizing our membership itself.

In ten years, I'd hope we build out into the expansion space and expand our selection to include more inedible household items

Q: A recent episode of Broad City was filmed at the Co-op. What did you think of their portrayal of the Co-op or co-ops in general?

A: The Broad City episode was pretty funny and was definitely the highlight of an otherwise disappointing Season Three for me. I feel like they went easy on us, hitting us with the expected snobby Co-op jokes but also sorta genuinely playing up why it's great being a part of the Co-op. Maybe I projected my feelings while watching.

I have to admit I cringed a little bit watching them spill things on the floor and improperly fill bulk containers -- that felt personal. I worked a shift the week after they finished filming, and the crew left a bit of a mess, including a bucket full of polenta and potatoes on the floor, as well as a bunch of sacks of non-organic beans that lived on the shelves for months which was a little annoying. But I guess they paid us and gave us free publicity and everything so it's okay.

Social Justice in BrooklynThis new section of the newsletter is meant to draw attention to and support for social justice work that’s happening in our city, borough, and neighborhoods. It will spotlight campaigns, movements, events, organizations, and groups whose work is the elimination of racial, economic, health, food, and other injustices that affect our members and that make participation in our cooperative prohibitive.

Trans day of action

Kick off Gay Pride Weekend with the 12th ANNUAL TRANS DAY OF ACTION! On Friday, June 24, from 3 pm to 6 pm, come to Washington Square Park to show your support for transgender and gender nonconforming communities. This year, Audre Lorde Project, one of the organizers of event, is calling on trans and gender nonconforming communities and their allies to organize contingents — five or more people — to attend. Contingents wishing to be listed as supporters on Trans Day of Action (TDOA) materials should please contact tdoa@alp.org.

Find more information on the Facebook page here. And you can track/promote Trans Day of Action with these Twitter handles: #TDOA16, #TRANSJUSTICE, #WEGOTHEPOWER

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

IT Committee In Urgent Need of PHP/LAMP Stack Developer!

The IT Committee is looking for help with the Co-op’s public facing website (www.greenehillfood.coop) as well as our internal systems, including our CRM and Shift Planning. If you have skills with PHP, Drupal, MySQL and CRMs (we use CiviCRM), then we could use your expertise. This work can be done remotely and is critical to ongoing success of our Co-op. For further information, email Chad Donnick membership@greenehillfood.coop.

Seeking Designers & Writers for New Membership Campaign!

Help us design an outreach campaign to engage new members to join the Co-op community! We’re looking for writers, designers, community organizers, and people with experience in event planning and marketing. Working for the Marketing and Outreach Committees are a great way to get your shift credits from home, or have more flexible hours. Email marketing@greenehillfood.coop to help out.

Seeking Finance Committee Members

If you have an interest in being involved in the day to day financial operations or finance strategy for the Co-op, please email finance@greenehillfood.coop.

Finance Office Assistant Shifts Available

Interested in doing some office work at the store? Your role would focus on handling invoices and entering data into our accounting software. You'd get all the training and guidance you need, while working at a dedicated Finance desk and computer, and you'd be helping the Co-op produce financial statements on a regular basis. You can set your own hours! Please email officeassistant@greenehillfood.coop if you'd like to join us.

Merchandising Committee Needs New Members

Interested in how food ends up on the Co-op shelves each week? Join us and make the magic happen. This position requires a 2½ hour monthly commitment (like any regular work shift), including attending one monthly meeting of 1½ hours. You’ll take inventory and order one key product from a small, local vendor like Mu Mu Muesli or Bridge tofu and seitan. If interested, email merchandising@greenehillfood.coop.

Et cetera

Credits: Co-op meeting photo by XX, veggie burger pic from Made by Lukas, ratatouille photo by Molly Neuman, photo of Nathan Albert supplied by him, Trans Day of Action image courtesy of Audre Lorde Project

The Greene Hill Food Co-op Newsletter is edited and published by (in alphabetical order) Carola Burroughs, Sonia Garbes Putzel, DK Holland, Alexandra (Aly) Miller, Amy Nazer, Molly Neuman, Shannon Sodano, Alejandro Varela, and Gitta Zomorodi. Contact us with any feedback, suggestions, or requests at newsletter@greenehillfood.coop.

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