PT Food Co-op

Port Townsend Food Co-op, 414 Kearney St., Port Townsend, WA, 98368
Open Every Day 8am-9pm
Phone: (360) 385-2883

Archive for the ‘Community Involvement’ Category

Good Food Needs Great Leadership

March 1st, 2016 by Rachel Williams

Board RecruitIt’s board election season at The Food Co-op again! Is serving on the Board a job for you? We are looking for people who believe in good food, community, and cooperation.

Food because as a co-op begun in the 70s, good food is our heritage. Community because we’re a member-owned business, closely tied to the welfare of our neighborhood. And cooperation because—besides the fact that co-ops are an alternative to corporations—active cooperation and collaboration are the way the board works.

So we need people who can listen and learn from six other board members, a general manager, and six thousand members! As we like to say, the best board members are those who play well with others.

Board members also need to be able to play the long game. Being on the board is not about getting things done fast or running the store; it’s about envisioning and planning our future. Plus, of course, there are meetings, so you need to have patience. But our meetings are well organized and the business part is straight forward and quick, so we have time to talk about the important issues. And we’re a jolly group—those meetings speed by before we know it, and then we’re off to celebrate and talk some more at a nearby beverage establishment.

So stop by to check out a board meeting, and pick up a candidate package at the Member Services Desk or download one here: 2016 Candidate Packet Final.
Candidate applications are due March 15, and voting takes place May 2-15.

Board meetings:
First Tuesday of each Month
The Food Co-op Annex
2110 Lawrence St.
5:30 to 8:30

We hope to see you soon!

Board Leadership Can Work for You

February 25th, 2016 by Rachel Williams

BOD Tractor PhotoAnd it can even be fun!

You are invited to join the Food Co-op Board for a discussion on how to make board work sustainable and fun. Meet your board members, learn about their experiences, and join in the conversation!

This discussion will start off our next Board meeting Tuesday March 1, 5:30pm at the Food Co-op Annex (2110 Lawrence St.)

For more information about this event, please contact Rachel at 379-5798 or boardassistant@foodcoop.coop.

The Food Co-op is currently accepting applications from members who wish to run for the Board. Application packets are available at the Member Services Desk in the store and can be downloaded here.

Welcome New Board Members!

December 17th, 2015 by Rachel Williams

Please welcome our new board members, Catherine Durkin and Owen Rowe.

Catherine Durkin webFor the past four years, Catherine has worked at Midori Farm, and if you shop the Wednesday Farmers Market, you’ve probably already met her. We are excited to get a farmer’s perspective on the board. She is passionate about food access and about the availability of local, organic food, plus she has a keen interest in health and nutrition education. In addition, she was part of an eating cooperative at college and is a member of the Jefferson County Local Food System Council, so she understands collaboration and working cooperatively within a group. You can see she will be a perfect fit for the Coop!

Owen Rowe webOwen may be familiar to you, as he volunteers in many places around the community, including the film festival. He is current the Program Manager for  Jefferson Community School and is a member of the Port Townsend Arts Commission. He is a man of many talents and interests, from software development to literature, from program management to psychology. And while he excels in analysis and detail, Owen also enjoys collaborative visioning and project planning, which will be invaluable in the months ahead.  We look forward to his input as we chart our future.

Why New Board Members Now?

Current Board Member Henry Werch is moving to Portland and so will be retiring from the board in January 2016. In order to fill the gap that he leaves, as well as encourage new board recruits, we decided to temporarily expand the board to nine members, which is the maximum number allowed in our bylaws. With a unanimous vote, the board can add new members, who then serve until the next board election. So we posted the openings on the board’s bulletin board at the front of the store and on our website. Owen and Catherine attended board and committee meetings, and we are delighted they decided to apply. At our November 2015 meeting, the board voted unanimously in both cases to invite them to join the board. If they like the work, they can run for a full three-year term in May 2016.

We are thrilled to have them join us!

Co-op Wins EPA Emissions Award

October 13th, 2015 by Kathie

Scott and Rene Food Co-op Roof 2015

Food Co-op staff Scott Marble (left) and René Tanner sit atop the co-op’s roof next to the low-temperature compressor with an iced-over visible accumulator. Marble and Tanner’s attention to the co-op’s refrigeration systems earned them an award for best emissions rate from the Environmental Protection Agency’s GreenChill Partnership.

The Port Townsend Food Co-op has earned the GreenChill 2014 Achievement Award for Best Emissions Rate from the Environmental Protection Agency’s GreenChill Partnership. This award goes to the partner with the lowest corporate-wide refrigerant emissions rate of all the 11,000 partners which includes well-known retailers such as Target, Whole Foods Market, Hanover Co-op stores and many others.

Refrigerants used by supermarkets are harmful to the environment when emitted into the atmosphere; some harm the ozone layer, and most are very potent greenhouse gases. Refrigerants that are commonly used in supermarket refrigeration systems are anywhere from 1,800 to 4,000 times worse for climate change than carbon dioxide.

“For comparison, our emissions rate for 2014 was 2.6 percent or 12 pounds of refrigerant, said René Tanner, Facilities and Maintenance Manager for The Food Co-op. “A typical supermarket leaks 1,000 pounds into the atmosphere annually. That is because we do in-house preventative maintenance on our refrigeration equipment and catch things early before they become a large problem. We also work with a responsive refrigeration contractor, Mayda Mechanical LLC.”

The EPA’s GreenChill Partnership works with supermarkets to reduce refrigerant emissions and decrease their impact on the ozone layer and climate change. The Partnership helps supermarkets transition to environmentally friendlier refrigerants; reduce harmful refrigerant emissions; and adopt greener refrigeration technologies and environmental best practices.

For more information on the EPA’s GreenChill Partnership, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/greenchill. Anyone may use the EPA’s climate change calculator for references to put the climate impact of refrigerants into context. It calculates equivalency results for passenger vehicles, gallons of gasoline, forests, etc. Find it at http://www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy-resources/calculator.html.

To learn more about The Food Co-op’s environmental efforts, please read the store’s recently published 2014 Sustainability Report.

DARK Act – The Next Step

July 27th, 2015 by Kathie

Dark ActThank you to all who called your U.S. House representative regarding the DARK Act, aka HB 1599. If you called Rep. Derek Kilmer, it was effective. He voted “no.” However, this legislation did indeed pass the House, and that was expected. Of the 10 Representatives from Washington State, 6 voted “no” and 4 voted “yes.” Here is how the vote went down in the entire House: http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2015/roll462.xml

The next step for the bill is the U.S. Senate. In the Senate, it is calculated that a vote going along Republican party lines would need 5 or 6 Democrat Senators to pass. As the Senate vote draws closer, we will ask you to call U.S. Senators Murray and Cantwell. Thank you!

 

Stop the DARK Act!

July 21st, 2015 by Kathie

gmo hb 1599On Thursday, the House of Representatives will vote on an anti-labeling act for GMOs. Known as the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015 by its advocates and the DARK Act by its opponents, it is more generically known as HB 1599. We oppose this law as does the National Co-op Grocers, the food co-op cooperative of which we are a member.

This law would block mandatory GMO labeling at the state and national levels. You can learn more about the bill by reading “DARK Act is moving through Congress quickly.”

If you are also opposed to HB 1599, we urge you to contact your House representative. If you live on the Olympic Peninsula, your congressman is Rep. Derek Kilmer. He can be reached through the above link or by calling 202-225-5916 (District of Columbia) or 360-797-3623 (Port Angeles). 

Co-op Bean Program Wins National Award

January 22nd, 2013 by Kathie

Bean Jar smallWe are pleased to announce that the Port Townsend Food Co-op won the small store retailer, Neighborhood Health Improvement category in the 2012 Food Marketing Institute Community Outreach Awards for our Beans for Bags Program. For this, we will receive a plaque as well as $1,000. The money will be used for more outreach into our community.

It just goes to show that something as small as a bean or a nickel can make a big difference.

“Every bean is equal to one and two-thirds pounds of food from Food Life Line, where we order our food from,” said Shirley Moss, the Jefferson County Food Bank manager. “If we didn’t have the contribution from the Food Co-op it would be very difficult to provide for all of these people. We served 325 families [on the] Wednesday after Thanksgiving. That’s a massive amount for us on a normal day.”

Every year, our food co-op gives over $27,000 to Jefferson County organizations in charitable contributions which includes Beans for Bags donations. In 2012, the Bean donation total topped $8,000 – a new record! In the last five years, the Food Co-op has given back a total of $37,845.19 to the community through this program.

The Food Co-op has never given out plastic bags and has always encouraged member/owners to bring their own bags as well as their own containers for produce and bulk food. In 2008, we began the Beans for Bags Program in which we gave our member/owners the choice of receiving either a nickel refund for each container or bag they bring for their groceries, or a bean worth five cents which they can drop in their choice of glass gallon jars designated for three local non-profit organizations. One of those three non-profit organizations is always the county food bank. The other two choices come from nominations made by the member/owners themselves. Those organizations typically serve local schools including Head Start, the local NAMI chapter, the Big Brothers and Big Sisters program, the homeless shelter, the animal shelter, the public library, the local hospice, a free clinic, United Good Neighbors, local farmer support, Habitat for Humanity, and an abused women’s shelter, among others.

We thank our Co-op shoppers for their generosity and strong support of the Beans for Bags Program.

 

Living Without Plastic – Could You?

November 1st, 2012 by Kathie

Beth Terry didn’t just give up plastic bags. She has attempted to give up all plastic. For the past five years, since 2007, Terry has strived to bring absolutely no new plastic into her life. She comes to Port Townsend at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 18 to speak of her experience at the Cotton Building at 607 Water St. The event is free.

“Bringing Beth Terry to town seems like a natural thing to do considering that the city’s plastic bag ban went into effect this month,” said Kathie Meyer, outreach coordinator for the Port Townsend Food Co-op. “And she has graciously waived her speaking fee to come here.”

It was one day, while laid up from surgery, that Terry became personally affected by a photo of a baby albatross carcass, dead from being fed plastic bits by its mother.  It was then she decided, if something were to be done about the effects of plastic on the global environment, she had to start with herself.

Since her “plastic awakening,” Terry went from personally generating almost four pounds of plastic waste per month (yes, she weighed it) to a little over two pounds per year. The average American, she says, generates between 88 and 120 pounds per year.

To keep herself on track, Terry started a blog (www.myplasticfreelife.com) which grew into a book titled Plastic Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too. Her book combines useful information about plastic-free alternatives with personal stories and the occasional rant.

“I didn’t write this book to tell anyone what to do, but as an invitation to join me in this journey of personal and ecological discovery. Sure, in all honesty I do want to inspire you and your friends and family to use less plastic. But more than that, to learn what it is about plastic that makes it the symbol of what Captain Charles Moore (discoverer of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch) calls the ‘crisis of our civilization,’ and figure out ways to get out from under the thumb of plastic addiction,” Terry writes in her book’s introduction.

Terry walks her talk in every area of her life. She made sure that her book was as plastic-free as possible too.  “Most books are full of plastic,” she writes. “So we’ve stripped things down. The jacket is uncoated, the thread is made of cotton, and the boards and spine are exposed. Our printer even managed to find a plastic-free glue to use. With all that in mind, we assure you that if the book’s not 100% free of plastic, it’s as close as can be!”

Beth Terry’s book is for sale and signing at her presentation. Her appearance is presented with the cooperation and sponsorship of the City of Port Townsend, Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce, Main Street Program, Old Consulate Inn, Port Townsend Food Co-op, Port Townsend Public Library, and Jude Rubin, aka the “Plastic Bag Monster.”

For more information, call 385-2831, ext. 309.

Local Mystery Bay Chevre Wins Second Best in North America!

August 12th, 2012 by Lauren

 

This week marks an incredible moment for Mystery Bay Farm, winner of the silver medal in the American Cheese Society’s 2012 North American Best Cheese Competition.

If you have not tasted this ultra creamy, mild and delicious chevre you must! Considering that there are thousands of chevre producers in North America, Rachael’s cheese shines in the spotlight.

Not only is taste and consistency why this cheese is preferred, the ecological methodology of Mystery Bay’s farming practices makes all of her products superb.

The cheese case at the Co-op has been rearranged to host Mystery Bay’s products at the bottom level in the center. Come and check out the four flavors of fresh chevre (made every week) and the exquisite chevre in basil infused olive oil.

Further Reading and Mystery Bay in the Press

How Does Your Grocery Store Check Out?

August 8th, 2012 by foodcoop

To read the full report, click here.

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