Recent City Market News

Take the 3SquaresVT Challenge

Please Join Hunger Free Vermont & Take the 3SquaresVT Challenge this November
 

Learn first-hand what it is like to try to make ends meet on a limited food budget!
 
WHEN: November 13 – 19 as part of National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week
 
WHERE: In your community, grocery store, and kitchen

Food Insecurity Across Generations

Faye Conte, 3SquaresVT Advocate, Hunger Free Vermont

As fall turns to winter and Thanksgiving approaches, families and friends gather to share meals and celebrate. Amidst this celebration, hunger continues to rise in Vermont, and many populations are vulnerable to its effects. Nearly 14% of all Vermont households are food insecure and older Vermonters, age 60 or more, are a rapidly growing portion of this population. Senior hunger has risen nearly 70% in the last ten years. At a time in life when good nutrition is critical to maintain health and independence, many seniors living on fixed incomes are unable to afford fresh, healthy foods. 

Since Tropical Storm Irene

Clem Nilan, General Manager

Since tropical storm Irene, my Saturday morning visits to the Burlington Farmers’ Market have become bittersweet. While there are still plenty of familiar faces, noticeably absent are all but one Intervale farmers whose seasons were rudely cut short by disastrous flooding. Gone for the season are Adam’s Berry Farm, Pitchfork Farm, Diggers’ Mirth, Arethusa Farm, and Half Pint Farm with only Stray Cat Flower Farm still able to sell her gorgeous bouquets.

Make no mistake, our Co-op depends upon the Intervale. Our relationship with the Intervale goes back decades. Much of the local produce in our Co-op comes from these farms. Last year we purchased over $140,000 in produce from 3 Intervale farms. This year the total dropped to $83,000. Total losses in the Intervale from the storm are now topping $750,000. The economic impact is devastating. What friends do when friends get in trouble is to step up, so we’re making sure that these farmers receive our support in these trying times.

Gluten-Free Options Expand to Deli Sandwiches

We've heard from many of our gluten-free customers that they'd like a GF bread option at our Deli Sandwich Counter. You spoke, we listen: We now offer sandwiches on Rudi’s Whole Grain Gluten-Free bread! Note that we can only offer half sandwiches due to the smaller bread size from Rudi's.

New Look for Meat & Seafood

Last week, you may have noticed some changes happening in the Meat & Seafood Department. We were busy installing a brand new case to hold our fresh seafood cuts plus other goodies. The new case is a little taller than our old one, but it's still easy to chat with our friendly staff if you have questions or are in to pre-order your Thanksgiving turkey (which you can also do online). Thanks for your patience during the renovation!

Our Favorite Apples for Pie

Autumn is an exciting time in our Produce Department as we start to see a huge variety of local apples. Customers often ask which apples are best for different purposes, from baking in pies to packing in lunch boxes. Today we offer a couple of suggestions for using in your next pie:

It's Time to Vote!

Active Shareholding Members, don't forget to vote for your Board of Directors. Voting is online this year! Detailed instructions were mailed earlier this month. Find more information and detailed candidate statements here.

GMOs: Just Label It!

Clem Nilan, General Manager

A customer comment from last week urged our Co-op to label genetically modified foods (GMOs). The comment was timely. October marks the launch of a national campaign called the Just Label It! We have the right to know with the goal of requiring labeling of GMO products.

The management and staff of our Co-op strongly support this campaign and believe that our members have a right to know what's in their food.

The FDA's stance is that GMO foods are substantially equivalent to unmodified, "natural" foods and therefore not subject to FDA regulation. Currently GMO labeling is voluntary. As a result, there is virtually no labeling of GMO ingredients.

The average food shopper has no idea which products are genetically modified or not. There is simply no information available on product labels to make informed choices. In fact, in a 2010 survey by the Hartman Group 61% of respondents believed that the term "natural" on a product's label implied the "absence of genetically modified foods." In this case, the majority of respondents are wrong.

When Is My Next Equity Payment Due?

Allison Weinhagen, Director of Member Services

Many of our active shareholding members pay $15 in equity each year until they reach their full share of $200. In order to be considered an “active” shareholding member for purposes of voting, member-worker discounts, and the Patronage Refund, a member’s equity needs to be current.

One way to know when your equity is due is to look at your Co-op receipt. At the top, next to your name, it should read “PIF” if your equity is Paid In Full. Otherwise, it will list the date that your next equity payment is due. In a few cases of long last or first names, this information may not show. Oftentimes, your cashier will also remind you if your equity due date is arriving soon.

In the interest of more convenient equity reminders, we’re making some improvements!

Patronage Refunds Are Here!

By Jennifer Kennelly, Director of Finance

Patronage checks for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2011 were issued November 10, 2011. We are pleased to announce that the Co-op made a net profit before taxes and patronage of 6.8%.

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