Q: First off, I am a new owner and have nothing but love for your assortment. Willy street is pretty much the only store I go to now! That being said, there are a couple products i’d love to see on your shelves. The first would be the Field Day Cocoa Chip cookies, the sister of the vanilla Field Day cookies you guys have (kind of like teddy grahams). I’ve only looked once to see if you have them and they may have just been sold out, but I didn’t see an item tag for it on the shelves next to the vanilla ones. The second product is the Nancy’s probiotic cream cheese. I had it last month and fell in love with it, so I was sad to see it wasn’t in the fridge at Willy East. Please take these requests into consideration, and HAVE A GREAT WEEK!
A: Thank you for writing in with your product requests. I looked into the two products that you are interested in. It turns out that the North store does carry the Field Day cocoa chip cookies. So we have a couple options here. If you are on that side of town, you can stop in and purchase them. Or, if you prefer to shop at East we can transfer some of the product from North to East. Just let me know and I will help facilitate that. I will also let the buyer know that there was a request for this product. Due to shelf space limitations I cannot promise anything right now.
Now, as for the Nancy’s cream cheese. That product is not carried at any of the three stores, so I have sent your product request to our purchasing department for review. If it is available to us, we think that it will be popular and we have shelf space available we will bring it in and I will let you know if that happens.
I hope this message finds you well, and have a beautiful day! -Amanda Ikens, Owner Resources Coordinator–East
Compostable produce bags
Q: Long time member, first time writer here. When I forget my bamboo- and rice-derived EcoMaxer bags for produce, I always regret it—but I’ve recently discovered your compostable produce bags, and they’re a delight.
Studies show plastic bags get the briefest of use—just long enough to get some fruit home, and then are recycled where possible, or in some less progressive communities, tossed into the wind and allow to drift thousands of miles to clog up the forests and streams of this sometimes great nation.
The Co-op’s compostable bags are just flimsy enough to remind us of their brief usable lifespan, and just strong enough to carry the substantial weight of a phalanx of pluots (the natural results of carnal union between plums and apricots). My good post-shopping vibes increase as the bags are tossed in the compost bin along with depleted Scobies and the parts of the kale plant even the alchemist Nicole won’t eat.
All this to say, thank for you replacing the plastic produce bags with these lovely compostables, I look forward to using them again soon.
A: Thanks for you lovely message! We are delighted to be able to offer these new bags, especially because they are certified home compostable rather than only industrially compostable like many other bioplastics. Best, Megan Minnick, Purchasing Director
Q: Having today read that some of my favorite breakfast cereals from childhood are not particularly “safe” to eat nowadays because farmers use glyphosate to kill the cereal crops and thus facilitate and accelerate the process of desiccation, I wonder if members can be assured that grains available in the bulk aisle are not from fields that have been sprayed with this nasty chemical. I am particularly buying steel cut oats and thick rolled oatmeal. -THANKS!
A: Hope your week is going well! The only way to assure that your food has not been directly sprayed with glyphosate is to buy organic products. Organic Certification prohibits the use of it. Our bulk steel cut oats and thick rolled oats are organic. I appreciate your questions and comments! -Dean Kallas, Grocery Category Manager
Shampoo and conditioner bars
Q :Hello, I was recently in the coop looking for shampoo bars and was surprised not to see any options. I personally have used this brand https://ethiquebeauty.com/ and think their products are fantastic, even beyond the shampoo. It looks like right now they are only shipping to the US through Amazon and I would really prefer to buy them at the co-op than get them shipped in plastic packaging from Amazon. Hope you will consider adding this product or an alternative to shampoo and conditioner bottles.
A: I have great news! We do have three shampoo and/or conditioner bars in our health and wellness section. The options are: JT Ligget’s shampoo bar, Four Elements Herbal Shampoo bar, and HiBar shampoo and conditioner bars. They are in the shampoo and conditioner section on the top shelf on the left.
Also, I just spoke with that department’s manager and they are looking to expand the shampoo and conditioner bar selection and they are trying to find a good source for a conditioner bar. So I have passed the information about The Ethique Beauty company to our Purchasing department to see if this product line is in fact available to us. If we are able to bring the product in I will let you know.
Thank you for taking the time to write to us with your product request, and have a beautiful day! -Amanda Ikens, Owner Resources Coordinator–East
Co-op at the Conservancy
Q: There was a workday in the Pheasant Branch Conservancy on Sat from 12-3. I noticed that a group from the coop had what appeared to be a class. I am wondering if they notified the County that they would be there and received permission to collect plants or whatever they were doing? Also, did they communicate with the Land Manager of PBC thru the FOPBC who would know if there were areas that had been managed and sprays applied recently? I’m not sure what the group was but I would suggest that in the future, for the safety of the group, they above contacts would be make. Perhaps they were and that would have be the proper way to access the conservancy in the future
I spend many hours working in the Conservancy for Dane County and FOPBC with volunteer groups, interns, workdays, on my own managing areas for invasive plants as directed by our land manager, etc. I was concerned about the health and safety of the Coop group. Communication is important as you plan future events in the County section of the Conservancy.
A: I hope this finds you well! We did hold a class on Saturday at Pheasant Branch Conservancy for which we did obtain the appropriate permit through Dane County Parks. The Parks Director, Operations Manager, and Ranger were all notified of the event via the permitting process.
The class was with an herbalist who was teaching attendees how to identify plant families and different ways plants can be used for both food and as medicinal herbs. This was not a foraging class, rather it was observation and discussion-based, and so no harvesting should have taken place, just smelling and observing under a hand lens.
I do appreciate you looking out, and for the work you do to make Pheasant Branch Conservancy a wonderful place for so many to enjoy! Best regards, Liz Hawley, Education and Outreach Coordinator