by Patrick Schroeder, Prepared Foods Category Manager
Happy New Year to you, Owners and shoppers. With the new year comes new changes here at the Willy Street Co-op. Later this month, beginning on January 20, we will close our Production Kitchen for approximately three weeks to finish some repair work that the site requires.
Some things to know about our Production Kitchen: it produces between 60% and 70% of the food you enjoy in our Deli and Bakery departments, and all of the food in our Catering program. That amounts to 50,000 to 60,000 pounds and pieces of product produced there every month, like Smoky Chicken Enchiladas, Curry Mango Chicken Salad, Sheba Bars, Banana Bread, and so much more! It goes without saying, some of you may miss our Production Kitchen and its products deeply during this time. We do not have the capacity in our stores themselves to create the products that we will miss while it is under repair, so we will be getting some help!
After January 20, you will start to see some new products available in our Delis and Bakeries. At the time of this writing, we are hard at work sourcing and vetting these products. We are partnering with regional co-ops, sustainably run regional producers, local food manufacturers, and many, many Madison businesses in order to fill our shelves, coolers, and hot bars for you during this period so that you may still enjoy quality foods in our stores. We will have to suspend our Catering program until the Production Kitchen is up and running again. We will have more details about these producers and their products later this month; check the website, social media, and in-store signage. Check out the selection and try the products! If there’s something you really like, please let us know; if there’s sufficient interest, we may bring in certain products even after the Production Kitchen is again making entrées and cookies and everything else they provide our stores.