December 2016 Newsletter


Welcome to Greene Hill Food Co-Op's Newsletter
December 2016Newsletter
Catching You Up on Co-Op News
As the year draws to a close, we’re reflecting on the special role the Co-op plays in providing a space to connect with one another, to build community and live our values. In this month’s newsletter, as always, we offer lots of ways to get involved, change it up and stand in solidarity with people engaged in vital social justice struggles. Let’s draw strength from this community and continue to build together.

Right now, with the Co-op open seven days a week, we need all hands on deck! If you’re behind on your work hours, please sign up for make-up shifts. If you’ve got time to spare, help us fill in the gaps! It takes all of us to keep the store running all week long.

The great news is that our membership continues to grow. We welcomed 10 new members and 41 trial members in November! If you’re new to the Co-op, make sure you sign up for an orientation. The next one is at 11 am on Sunday, January 15.

In the spirit of celebration, mark your calendar for 2017’s first Open House on Saturday, January 14. We’ll have food samples, hot drinks and more. Invite your family, friends and neighbors!

Never been to a board meeting? They’re open to everyone and are a great way to learn about the Co-op’s inner workings. This month’s meeting is on Wednesday, December 21, at 7:30 pm.

If the cold weather has you craving carbs, you can scratch that itch with this simple recipe for a creamy orecchiette pasta with cauliflower and breadcrumbs.

In the Co-op Q&A meet new marketing committee chair Ray Jolicoeur who brings a passion for kombucha and sustainable food.

This month’s Social Justice spotlight looks beyond Brooklyn to Standing Rock,North Dakota!  You haven’t seen former Greene Hill board member Renee Bergan at the Co-op for a while because she’s been at Standing Rock with the Sioux, bearing witness to stop the further construction of the Dakota Access pipeline. You can see her work on this at Co-op is offering an easy way to donate in support of the courageous water protectors and their allies. We also offer a few other ideas to show your solidarity.

Don’t forget to check out the Help Wanted section. There are plenty of fun and interesting opportunities to fulfill your work shift requirement. And if you have an old laptop you could donate, we need one!

Interested in joining the Greene Hill Food Co-op? Know someone that might be? 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!

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What's Up Next at the Co-op?

Find out by coming to our next General meeting. It’s on Wednesday, December 21, from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm, at the Co-op (18 Putnam Ave). As the meeting approaches, you can view the agenda online. Because of the holidays, this meeting is being held one week earlier than usual. The Co-op is a valued community asset and space. Get involved! Meetings are open to all in our community — members and non-members alike. Bring a friend or two!

Please take note: the Co-op will be closed on Christmas and New Year’s Day, December 25 and January 1.

As you may know, we are in court because of a lease dispute with our landlord — with whom we just signed a new five-year lease that protects our tenancy. We are keeping members posted on our progress with regular, timely emails. We’ll also be discussing the situation at Co-op board and general meetings, so if you’re interested in learning more we encourage you to attend.

Calling All New Members
The next new member orientation is set for Sunday, January 15, at 11:00 am. All new members are required to attend an orientation. We’ve also now posted Facebook events for the orientations so you can see the dates several months out and RSVP.  Check it out! Orientations last one hour, take place at the Co-op, and earn you a full work shift credit. RSVP or direct any questions to

Party Like It's 2017: Winter Open House!
We’re celebrating the new year at our Winter Open House. Come party with us!

When: Saturday, January 14, 10 am to 6 pm

Where: Greene Hill Food Co-op at 18 Putnam Avenue

We’ll have free food samples, hot drinks, music and festivities. These events are a great way for the Co-op to bring in new members. Help us spread the word by forwarding this email to friends and family. Be sure to let them know that ALL are welcome to shop!

Work shift
Our Co-op, Our Work Shifts
With the Co-op now open seven days a week, it’s more important than ever — for our long-term growth and success — that all member-owners work their shifts. We can’t order the goods, stock the shelves, track the finances or a million other things without you. Yes, you. It’s our Co-op!This is a friendly reminder that all members are required to work a minimum of 2½ hours (one standard shift) every four weeks. We have plenty of shifts to choose from! Simply log into Shift Planning and find what works for you.

Please note, starting in January, we’ll be stricter about enforcing the Co-op’s policy in response to low hours and missed shifts. If you’re behind on hours, please sign up now for a make-up shift or two. It’s easy and contributes to keeping the store running smoothly. Full details of work shift requirements, shift sign up and shift swapping can be found on the Greene Hill website.

If you’re in good standing, that’s great. We’re grateful for you! With holiday times upon us, please consider banking shifts by signing up to work red highlighted shifts on the Shift Coverage Sheet. Every shift helps!.

If you have any questions or problems finding a shift that’s right for you, please email and let us help you!

Shout Out to our Newest Co-op Members
Join us in a warm welcome to the latest additions to the Co-op family. The folks listed below joined in November. We also added 41 trial members. We are on a great trajectory as we charge into winter!

Liz B.

Joe D.

Rachel F.

Keetch M.

Taylor T.

Iris C.

Serena F.

Caolan H.

Alex P.

Kimberly V.

Donate Your Old Laptop
The Co-op is seeking a replacement laptop for our check-in desk. If you have a working laptop that you can donate, please contact
Orecchiete With Cauliflower, Pecorino Romano, and Breadcrumbs
Recipe by Molly Neuman

cauliflower orecchiete
In the holiday season, finding a quick, delicious and satisfying meal that takes less than 30 minutes to make is a dream. This recipe is a riff on one I saw on America's Test Kitchen that used bacon and cooked the pasta like risotto. I am sure that's yummy if you're a bacon fan, but this version is so hearty and tasty, I don't think you're missing anything without it. The yogurt gives the dish a bit of tang and creaminess without it being a true creamy pasta. Give it a shot!
Serves 4-6.
2 T butter½ cup panko bread crumbs4 T olive oil

2 large shallots, sliced

½ a large head of cauliflower, cored and cut into 1-inch florets

½ lb orecchiette pasta3 T greek yogurt¼, cup pecorino romano

3 T minced fresh parsley

salt and pepper

Heat a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. In a small skillet, melt the butter and saute the bread crumbs until golden brown; transfer to a small bowl and set aside. Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet and saute shallots until brown; transfer to a small bowl and set aside. Heat another two tablespoons of olive oil in the large skillet and saute the cauliflower florets until golden brown. Reduce the heat and cover, letting cook 10 minutes or until tender. Remove from the heat and let the pan sit covered.

Cook the orecchiette in boiling water until al dente, then transfer to a large bowl with a slotted spoon so that some pasta water comes along. Stir in yogurt and cheese, combining thoroughly, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the shallots and cauliflower and check again for seasoning. Transfer to a serving platter or individual bowls, top with the breadcrumbs and parsley and serve.

Approximate cost: $7 in total or $1.75 per person!

Social Justice in Brooklyn: Standing with Standing Rock

defend the sacred
Since April 2016, water protectors and allies have been at Standing Rock, North Dakota, resisting Energy Transfer Partners’ construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). On December 4, the Army Corps of Engineers announced it would not approve the easement for the pipeline. The proposed pipeline would pass beneath the Missouri River at Oahe River, a juncture within a half-mile of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe reservation. Unfortunately, this latest announcement is not the end of the story. The companies funding the pipeline have made it clear that the Obama administration’s recent decision has not changed their intentions.

Oceti Sakowin Camp (Seven Council Fires camp) is where thousands of water protectors and allies are staying for the duration of the resistance. Greene Hill Food Coop has made it simple for members to support this camp: the next time you shop at the store, just ask the cashier to add a donation to your purchase. Contributions will go toward winter supplies like wood, warm clothing, boots, liners, tipi poles, winter sleeping bags, food, and other needs of those staying there.

The Grassroots Global Justice Alliance has also suggested the following actions as steps we can take to continue to support Standing Rock:

  1. Support local solidarity actions. We need to keep public support for Standing Rock visible and present.
  2. Donate to, Indigenous Peoples Power Project, or the Water Protector Legal Collective (formerly Red Owl Collective Legal Defense) Fund to support the ongoing infrastructure and organizing at Standing Rock.
  3. Divest from banks investing in the Dakota Access Pipeline. Pressuring banks and closing personal accounts is a strategy being used across the country. Read this article in YES! Magazine for more information, including a list of banks and their contact information. Locally, Bank of America, Chase, Citibank, TD Bank, Wells Fargo, and others are among the backs invested in DAPL. See for the full list and how to contact them.
  4. Pressure police departments to permanently withdraw from Standing Rock. Here is a list of contacts.

Learn more: #StandWithStandingRock #NoDAPL #WaterIsLife

The Co-op Q&A With Ray Jolicoeur
This month, we interviewed new member Ray Jolicoeur who is lending his in-depth sustainable food marketing perspective as the new marketing committee chair.

Q: When did you join the Co-op and what were some of your first impressions?

A: I joined five months ago. I walked by the Co-op many times before joining and noticed that it was often closed. My wife encouraged us to join recently. So far, I think it’s very empowering to be a part of this working co-op, where you have to get involved and be engaged!

Q: Where are you from and what neighborhood is home now?

A: I’m originally from Montreal, Canada, and I’ve been in NY for 10 years. The last five years, I’ve been in Bed-Stuy.

Q: What role are you playing at the Co-op?

A: My first assignment was shift leader where I was assigned the task of refilling shelves and taking care of orders and deliveries that come in. Just stocking shelves to me was rewarding -- making sure they’re full and attractive to the customers. Then, last month, I began getting more involved on the marketing front. I’m still just starting, but I walked into a board meeting and DK invited me to join the meeting. As conversations were flowing, there was discussion about having a new marketing team member. Eventually, I’ll be the marketing coordinator.

Q: What drew you to the marketing committee?

A: I’ve been involved in marketing for my whole career and I’ve focused a lot on food marketing. I also managed my own beverage company for the last 15 years. Now, at The Startup Farm, I work with food startups and help them grow their business -- talking about packaging improvements, formulation improvements, operations, etc. I’m also interested in and aware of how people want to be more mindful of what they consume -- not just in terms of sustainable food, but everything from clothing to the news.

Q: What are some of your favorite products at the Co-op?

A: My favorite is the locally made kombucha -- I always fill up the big jug. It’s a great value and it’s great tasting! And it brings me back here -- when the jug is empty, I know I have to go back to the Co-op. The chocolate selection and cheese section are great value as well.

Q: What would you like to see the Co-op become?

A: I’d love the Co-op to continue to offer a better selection of products and improve our communication with our members! Finally, I’d love for the community to see the Co-op as a resource. There’s a growing yearning among a lot of people to know where their food is coming from -- to be more mindful of it -- and this is a great opportunity to be involved in that process!

Help Wanted
All members work a 2½ hour shift every 4 weeks. It's part of being a member/owner. Here are some opportunities to earn work credit.
Membership Committee Seeks New ChairpersonAre you looking for a hugely rewarding opportunity to make change at the Co-op? We’re looking for an active and organized member to take over the Membership chair duties. As chair you’ll steer initiatives to improve the overall membership experience. You’ll fine-tune existing processes, create new processes, help field member questions and work with the Membership Committee to ensure all tasks are being done and new ideas are given the chance to flourish.

The chair position will require more than the minimum 2½ hours of work every four weeks, but how much more is up to you, your initiatives and what you delegate. You’ll be trained by the current chairperson and given ample time to transition into the role. We ask for a one-year minimum commitment to this position. Please contact if you’re interested.

Looking for Leaders: New Member Orientation Do you know the Co-op in and out? Do you like speaking to others about the Co-op? We’re looking for new folks to help run the monthly orientations. You need only commit to a minimum of two orientations for an entire year. They last one hour, and you get a full work shift credit for conducting them. Help us educate the new generation of Co-op member-owners!  Contact if youare interested.

Membership Desk Seeks Help
We’re looking for people to run the Membership Desk in the store. You’ll be fielding member questions both in person and online, signing up new members and processing hours’ crib sheets. You’ll get credit for this in-store shift. We are aiming to fill regular Saturday slots (11 am to 1:30 pm) first. Because this role requires special training, we ask for a minimum six-month commitment. Please contact if you are interested.
Governance Committee in URGENT NEED of Members!Want to learn more about how our bylaws are amended and our Board of Directors are elected? You can play a vital role in shaping the Co-op’s future by joining the Governance committee. We are urgently seeking new members to assist with the elections process and future projects as needed. All work can be completed on your time from home. Please email to learn more.

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 ( 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 at

Seeking Finance Committee MembersIf you have an interest in being involved in the day-to-day financial operations or finance strategy for the Co-op, please email

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'll 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 if you'd like to join us.

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Credits: Winter squash and work shift pictures by Kelsey Chauvin, snowflake photo by Guy Mayer via Flickr Creative Commons, pasta pic by Molly Neuman, Standing Rock photo courtesy of Defend the Sacred from GGJ Alliance website.
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, Molly Neuman, Shannon Sodano Heffernan, Alejandro Varela, and Gitta Zomorodi. Contact us with any feedback, suggestions, or requests at
Join and/or follow the Greene Hill Food-Op!
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!