December 2005

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Customer Comments

General Manager's Report

Board Report: Owner Involvement

Deli News

Produce News

Health & Wellness News

Book News

Juice Bar News

Community Reinvestment

Specials Information

Grocery News

2005 Farm Tour Report

Producer Profile: Clasen's European Bakery

Ask the Midwife

A Holiday Baking Guide for Special Diets

Recipes & Drink Recommendations


Community Calendar


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Customer Comments


Gluten-free pasta specials
Q: It has been well over a year since you have offered a special on BioNature’s gluten-free pasta. The other pasta from BioNature has been on special often. I wonder if it is possible sometime in the near future to honor those of us who have a gluten-free diet with a BioNature gluten-free pasta special. We have also been missing specials on Organic Raw Almond Butter. We know you have good reasons for your decisions.

A: I think you raise some good points about items being on special and the frequency of them being on sale. Some things on special do really well for us and some do not work as well, but ultimately these specials are driven by the manufacturers. Certain companies tend to promote their lines through sales and others do not. BioNature does an excellent job of supporting their product and when they put their GF pasta on a deal I will definitely put it on sale. I appreciate your feedback!! I will also look for an Org. Raw Almond Butter deal as well. Thanks!! Dean Kallas, Grocery Manager

Sugary kids’ foods
Q: A lot of the “kids” foods (i.e., with lots of sugar!) is at their low eye-level! This makes it hard for adults/parents to say “no.” That is the same bad advertising stuff that regular supermarkets do. Please move it up on the shelf. Thanx.

A: Yes, many stores do merchandise products at children’s eye level to capitalize on. However, children are very much part of the shopping here; we even have kid-size carts for them to use. But, based on your comment, we will review the location of sugary foods targeting kids. By the way, we do have a candy-free checkout aisle for parents if they need this option. Thank you, Wynston Estis, Asst. Store Manager

Fresh nuts
Q: I would like a better selection of fresh nuts in the shell at this time of year. The shelled nuts in bulk tend to be flavorless and a bit rancid - that’s not the Co-op’s fault, but it happens to shelled nuts. Fresh walnuts, pecans, etc. in the shell are awesome!

A: ‘Tis the season already? We will have them in soon! Andy Johnston, Produce Manager

Creative displays
Q: I love the end cap displays, likewise the harvest décor over the ice cream freezer. It’s the attention to details that make this store stand out—whenever I shop here I leave feeling cheered up. Not only is the staff friendly, the produce local and organic, but the store is beautiful. My friends from out of town envy my year-round access to Willy—they only get to visit once in a while. Joy!

A: Wow, what a great compliment! I will pass this on to Amber who does our displays. Thank you very much for letting us know your feelings. Brendon Smith, Communications Manager

Coffee Stirrers
Q: Please bring back re-usable coffee stirrers at the juice bar. I had really appreciated this. It assuages my guilt for being wasteful. Thanks for your consideration.

A: Thanks for the comment. We struggled with this decision for a while, but the constant disappearance of spoons and the difficulty of tracking them down, getting them washed and making sure they were labelled made it necessary for us to make the switch. Dan Moore, Juice Bar Manager

Conventional ricotta
Q: WSGC (no longer?) carries “conventional” (non-organic) ricotta? I see two kinds of organic. If organic ricotta has the same % cost difference as organic milk (~100%), I don’t think this serves our mission of serving the neighborhood. Suggest WSGC carry non-organic.

A: Thanks for writing. We still carry the conventional. Our supplier got bought out and there’s been a bit of confusion and supply problems on their end. Hopefully this will return to normal soon. Dan Moore, Deli Manager

Local syrup
Q: I was very delighted to see organic maple syrup from local producers! I really like being able to support local organic farmers! Thanks!

A: We are proud to offer many great products from local farmers and businesses. Thanks for your support. Matt Hofstede, Grocery Supervisor

Friday Night Sampler
Q: Delicious tasting party today. Thank you, also, for the recipes.

A: Hi, thanks for the compliment! We have these samplers on the second Friday of the month, November through April. In May, June and July, we grill out on the second Saturday of the month. We hope to see you at the next one! Brendon Smith, Communications Manager

Lunch bags
Q: Vinyl insulated lunch bags were made in China and had to be returned due to lead in them. All future gifts and giveaways at membership meetings should be union-made and in the U.S. if possible, but definitely no sweatshop goods like those lunchbags.

A: Thank you for your comment. Our giveaways for the past few years (with the exception of the lunch bags)—caps, t-shirts, bandanas, etc.—have been made in the U.S. and union-made when possible. I made the unfortunate decision to buy the lunch bags we had because the ones made in the U.S. (our rep couldn’t find any union-made) would’ve taken longer to receive and print than we had—10 weeks when the Annual Membership Meeting was eight weeks away. All future giveaways will either be union-made, made in the U.S. but sweatshop-free, or Fair Trade. Brendon Smith, Communications Manager

Q: Your pie rules!
A: Thanks! Dan Moore, Deli Manager

Alcohol-free echinacea
Q: Could you carry alcohol-free echinacea? Have also preferred it. Recent article in Alternative Medicine stated alcohol renders echinacea ineffective.

A: Hi! We do carry alcohol-free echinacea. HerbPharm, Eclectic Institute and Simplers all provide us with echinacea glycerites. Just ask anyone in the Health & Wellness department to point them out to you. Thanks for your inquiry. Lisa Stag-Tout, General Merchandise Manager

Meat-based Deli salads
Q: I have noticed that the Deli has been producing a greater number of dishes that are meat-based, while the number of vegetarian dishes has decreased proportionally. I would like to have Deli dishes for my lunches during the week, but I am finding the same “old” choices in the veg. and the new entreés [are] meat-based (for me, not a choice). Also, when I arrive here (usually on the weekend), there never seem to be any Pan Bagnas anymore. Thanks.

A: Thanks for writing. We felt that while we had a decent variety of vegetarian dishes, we only had two meat dishes. Since our meat salads had extremely high sales, I felt it was in our best interest to develop a few new selections for those wishing to buy meat. This isn’t to say we won’t continue developing veggie salads, but I felt we should focus on one thing at a time. The pan bagna shortage is strictly a supply problem; we continue to order them and hopefully this will be straightened out soon. Dan Moore, Deli Manager