We welcome your comments and give each one attention and serious consideration. Send them to or fill out a Customer Comment form in the Owner Resources area. Each month a small selection is printed in the Reader. The rest can be found in the commons or in the binder near Customer Service. Thank you!
We welcome your comments and give each one attention and serious consideration. Send them toor fill out a Customer Comment form in the Owner Resources area. Each month a small selection is printed in the Reader. The rest can be found in the commons or in the binder near Customer Service. Thank you!
Q: There are not enough meat lover’s options in the deli.
A: Yes, this is a concern I have heard from other omnivores. When reviewing our menus and recipe catalog, admittedly we do produce a little heavy on the vegan options. On average we offer 14 vegan options in our cold/hot case per day and 7 containing dairy or meat. The Deli department strives to offer the variety that our Owners desire while being mindful of dietary restrictions. I feel we have a pretty good balance but there is always room to improve. I will be sure to let our cooks know that the meat lovers would like a few new options. Thanks for the feedback! Best, Gina Jimenez-Lalor, Deli Manager–East
Q: Please carry gluten and dairy-free baked goods in your bakery. All those I found made fresh here are gluten-free but not dairy-free.
A: Thanks for writing! Right now we do have a few products that are both dairy-free and gluten-free. Two products that are from Rustic Kitchen are the Pender Isle Chocolate Zucchini Cupcake and the Ginger Kick Carrot Muffin. We also carry seven flavors of raw cheesecakes from Earth Café. We are currently searching for more products that fit both of these categories. We will also bring these ideas to our own in house bakery to see if they might explore things they could produce in their facility. -Bill Pohlman, Deli Manager–West
Q: Would like to see more fruit and veggies that are local!
A: Thanks for the comment! We always try to carry as much local produce as we possibly can—right now (early August) about 60% of our vegetable offerings are locally grown, and the remainder are things that either are not available in our area or things that do not tolerate the high temperatures and dry conditions we’ve had this year. This has been an extremely tough year for local fruit growers. We had local peaches and will have some apples, but the supply will be far less than in a normal year. Thanks again for the comment. We’re doing the best we can! -Megan Blodgett-Minnick, Produce Manager–West
Q: Whoa—a 16 oz. coffee is now $2.43?!! That is higher than any coffee shop I know of in town. What gives?
A: Thanks for writing! You are correct that our coffee prices have gone up. The only reason the price was raised was because the cost to us has gone up so much recently. I feel we are in line with other places that sell coffee in town. As you no doubt know our coffee is sourced from Fair Trade organizations and we choose to sell organic, which of course costs more in general. Additionally we strive to pay wages and benefits fairly ourselves to our workers and carefully maintain all our equipment to high standards.
The local coffee shop by my apartment charges $2.50 for a 16 oz. coffee. -Bill Pohlman, Deli Manager–West
Q: I feel that having the display of bakery sweets in the produce section is contrary to the Co-op’s general emphasis on encouraging healthier eating and connection with local foods. I’ve seen many parents delighted that their kids are so excited about fruit. Now, of course, the cookies are the first things they see. We carry great baked goods at our Co-op, but why distract from our truly beautiful produce department? Put the bakery in the bakery!
A; Thanks for writing! I’m happy you noticed the new bakery display in the Produce department. This is exactly what we were looking for. Bakery sales have been slow at our new location. I agree we carry great baked goods at our Co-op so we feel they needed more exposure. This idea was initiated with the cross-merchandising of shortcake and pound cake with the strawberries found in the Produce department. It was such a success that the idea was expanded upon to include other items such as the cookies you mentioned. I think children will still be drawn to our Produce department with their beautiful displays of colorful fruits and vegetables. -Bill Pohlman, Deli Manager–West
Q: Noticed California corn for 99¢/ear and California seedless watermelon for 89¢/lb. (10 lb. melon =$10) in store when up the street by Walgreens I can buy Wisconsin Eugster’s corn for 50¢/ear and seedless melon for $5.00. I didn’t ask if Eugster’s was grown locally or if it was organic and I suspect they might not give additional discount to Willy Street, but why isn’t Willy using this local producer?
A: Thanks for the comment! I suspect that the Eugster’s produce is not organic. We’ve chosen to carry only organically certified sweet corn since there is a huge concern with GMO and chemical contamination on conventional corn. Organic corn is considerably more expensive to produce, and unfortunately we don’t have a good local source for it. Check out our August newsletter (willystreet.coop/reader_editions/12-21773/local_season) for a more in-depth article about this issue. Local organic watermelon is in stock from Tipi Produce. The price is 69¢/lb. Thanks again! -Megan Blodgett-Minnick, Produce Manager–West
Q: Your front middle cooler is leaking gas. Stinks. Is this affecting organic practices? Gross!
A: The cooler is evaporating condensation, the mist you are seeing is steam. The front produce case is not connected to a drain like the majority of our refrigeration and must therefore burn off any excess ice/frost/water that is collected during the normal refrigeration cycle on the condenser coils in a tray underneath the unit after the defrost cycle is complete. The odd smell of that steam that you are noticing may be dust that has been trapped in the excess water tray and has then been burned by the heating element. We try to keep that tray as clean as possible, but with the amount of foot traffic in that area, and the other nightly cleaning duties that we perform, inevitably, some dust build-up happens. I can assure you that there is no dangerous chemical in that steam and that it doesn’t harm the produce in any way. -Bryan Dean, Maintenance Assistant–West