Green Tip – Support Your Local Food Co-op

EDITOR’S NOTE: EACH TUESDAY MY GREEN SIDE BRINGS SIMPLE TIPS FOR GREEN LIVING TO THE CHRISTOPHER GABRIEL PROGRAM. WE ALSO HIGHLIGHT A FAVORITE GREEN SITE EACH WEEK. YOU CAN STREAM THE SEGMENT AT APPROXIMATELY 1220PM (CENTRAL) EVERY TUESDAY AT WDAY.COM OR, IF YOU’RE IN NORTH DAKOTA OR WESTERN MINNESOTA, LISTEN ON YOUR RADIO AT AM970 WDAY.

GREEN TIP: Get involved in your local food co-op. Food co-ops are people working together for better food, Local, organic saladstronger communities and a healthier world.

A new study, Healthy Foods Healthy Communities: The Social and Economic Impacts of Food Co-ops (commissioned by the National Cooperative Grocers Association (NCGA) and the ICA Group), quantifies the impact food co-ops have as compared to conventional grocery stores. The study’s compelling results demonstrate the many ways that food co-ops do well while doing good.

Some ways food co-ops make a stronger community and a healthier world:

  • They strengthen the local economy
    • The economic impact that a grocery store has on its local economy is greater than just the sum of its local spending, because a portion of money spent locally recirculates. For example, food co-ops purchase from local farmers who, in turn, buy supplies from local sources, hire local technicians to repair equipment, and purchase goods and services from local retailers. According to the study, for every $1,000 a shopper spends at their local food co-op, $1,604 in economic activity is generated in their local economy—$239 more than if they had spent that same $1,000 at a conventional grocer.
  • They create community
  • They provide a reliable marketplace for local farmers, artists, and other entrepreneurs
  • They are an educational center
    • Locally as we work together to build Prairie Roots Food Co-op there are already educational opportunities like the upcoming class: Food Preservation Skills: Make Your Own Pectin. If you’re interested, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/368386999957342/ for more information.
  • They promote healthy eating
  • They engage in environmental stewardship
    • Grocery stores—co-ops and conventional alike—generate a significant amount of waste. What sets retail food co-ops apart is what they do with that waste. According to the study results, co-ops recycle 96 percent of cardboard, 74 percent of food waste and 81 percent of plastics compared to 91 percent, 36 percent and 29 percent, respectively, recycled by conventional grocers.

How Does Your Grocery Store Checkout

Infographic Source: Stronger Together.coop

My Green Side’s web pick of the week:Prairie Roots Co-op

Prairie Roots Food Cooperative

In the Fargo Moorhead area, Prairie Roots Food Cooperative is dedicated to building a healthy community by providing access to natural, organic, and locally produced food. A lifetime membership is $300 per household with a variety of payment plans to suit every budget. More information, including an online membership application, is available at their website: www.prairie-roots.coop.

On July 7th, the Prairie Roots Online Market opened for business. Each week local producers list items for sale on Prairie Roots Food Cooperative’s website. Members can log on and shop at their convenience from Sunday through Wednesday and then pick up their natural, organic and local food, produce and other items on Thursday evening.

The future food co-op grocery store will be a member-owned natural foods, full-service, retail grocery store in the Fargo-Moorhead area that will be open to both members and the public. Prairie Roots seeks to provide educational opportunities to members of our community and support producers who utilize sustainable and socially responsible production methods.

UPCOMING

Food Preservation Skills: Make Your Own Pectin with Kaye Kirsch

Pectin is what makes jams and jellies thick. It is naturally occurring in some fruits and is required in many jam recipes. Pectin can be purchased in many forms, but why buy it when you can make your own? In this class you’ll see a demonstration of making pectin (aka: green apple jelly) from start to finish. I’ll touch on the basics of water bath canning using the standard metal lids, Tattler reusable lids and Weck jars. All three methods will also be demonstrated. Attendees will receive recipes for green apple jelly and other jams made using this form of pectin. We’ll also sample some jams made with green apple jelly and you’ll get some pectin to take home with you. LOCATION: Dakota Medical Foundation, 4334 18th Ave S, Fargo DATE: Monday, August 12 from 7 – 9 PM.

For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/368386999957342/ and check out Prairie Roots other upcoming events.

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