Friday, July 25, 2008

My first trip to the Co-op

Since starting my green/organic venture, and since I moved here about a year ago, I took my first trip to my local Co-op today pick up some things for lunch. I was overwhelmed by its size, I have only been to one other co-op in my life and in comparison this is much bigger. For a city of 100,000, I guess I had to expect something bigger ;) Anyways, I was looking for some organic romaine hearts, so I picked up some of those for $3.99, I also bought some fair-trade organic dark chocolate ($3.49), and some Cinnamon Swirl bread ($3.49). There was also a great deli area that provided a salad bar, fresh pizza, and other items to eat on the spot in their restaurant area. One thing I do plan on picking up in the future is milk, which comes in the nostalgic glass bottles, and from my own area. The glass is reused, which means less waster for the environment, in addition to less gas wasted traveling the products from far away. While in the check out lane, I picked up an issue of a magazine dedicated to living green in my own local area. Awesome! In addition to getting a discount for using my reusable bags, you can also get a discount for becoming a share-holder of the store. As a part of being a co-owner, my local Co-op also provides coupon books, cooking classes, and you can even share in the Co-op's profit through patronage refunds. I think I might take up this tempting offer soon.

I would encourage you to check out your local Co-op or Natural Foods Store, even if you don't get anything. I remember being amazed the first time I went into a co-op and found out just how many things that are good for the Earth (like detergents and other cleaning products) or how many things that can be organic. There is even organic soda! So check it out sometime, you'll be surprised. Don't know where your local co-op is? Check out the Co-op directory service

In addition, I also mentioned I purchased fair-trade chocolate. What exactly is fair-trade?

"Fair trade is a system of exchange that seeks to create greater equity and partnership in international trading system by

  • Paying fair wages in local context;
  • Supporting participatory workplaces;
  • Ensuring environmental sustainability;
  • Supplying financial and technical support;
  • Offering public accountability.
  • Respecting cultural identity;
  • Building direct and long-term relationships; and,
  • Educating consumers."
(As quoted from fairtradefederation.org) Basically, when we import things from other countries for "cheaper", fair-trade items provide the producer in that country with a more fair amount if not equal to what is paid for it by the merchandiser in the United States. Fair-trade items are marked throughout the store.


1 comment:

Posmena Sales said...

Here is a link for FairTrade Chocolate online:
- chocolate4you