Summer 2013

Volume 29, Issue 7

The FireStarter

Val’s Famous Potato Salad
Viet Wah
, spicy Asian noodle salad
or our Tortellini Salad, all sold by the pound
(Order in bulk for your next picnic or family gathering--just give us 48 hours notice)
see ingredients and pricing

Want to Help Your Co-op? Join the Board!

Because the Co-op is a member owned cooperative, we get to choose the direction we go. If we like the way things are going we can “stay the course” or if we want to change things, we can do that. Such is the power of the membership.

The group charged with this responsibility is your representatives, the Board of Directors. We are looking for a few new board members. You can help to be the vision.

For most of our members the Co-op functions well; it's there when we want what we want. We like it and we want it to continue being there on the corner of 4th and Western. But the Co-op only exists and continues to function thanks to a lot of hard work on the part of the management, staff, volunteers and the Board of Directors.

Because we are legally a cooperative we must have a Board to represent the membership and to take care of certain responsibilities. This has been going on since the beginning, with many different people serving their three or more years on the board. But three years quickly pass and it is a good thing that new people get on and that other board members can get off. So every year we look to the membership for new board members.

It can't be denied that being on a board requires time and energy You have to learn about stuff, be prepared for the meetings, try to represent a diverse membership and help with fundraising activities. It's not without its rewards. The Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op is a good thing with a long and proud history, and board members work to see that it continues. Indeed the board is the vision of co-op and helps to determine the direction over time. The vision thing is the most interesting and excit­ ing part, which balances the required work.

One way to give back to the community is to serve on a board. Pick up a leaflet and look at the sorts of skills or interests that could help us. If you think you might be interested in serving on our board of directors please contact us. We'd love to talk to you.

Thank you,

Rob Thompson, Board of Directors


Support Your Co-op and Win a Prize!

- by Alice Simon, Store Manager

Stop by the Co-op’s front counter and purchase a raffle ticket before July 22. The raffle is a benefit for the store’s Improvement Fund and there will be three drawings on July 22. The prizes are all items that have been donated to us for fundraising by one of our vendors--Lei Lotus.

Lei Lotus, and its owner Cathy Carter, are Co-op supporters, and also donate a part of its proceeds to an orphanage in Nepal. You can read more about it on their web site The Co-op appreciates their support and their donation.

The three prizes are:

Buy a ticket to win it for yourself or as a gift. Every ticket sold goes directly to the Improvement Fund to be used for upcoming building projects. Tickets are $1.00 each in the Co-op. You don’t have to be present to win.

NEW! Buy Raffle Tix Online! Out of state and want to participate? Not planning to be in town when the Co-op is open before July 22nd? Don't miss out, just use our new secure Paypal button to purchase a single ticket, a 5-pack, or a 10-pack of raffle tickets. You click and we tear off the tickets, write your name on them, and put 'em in the jar. If only buying food was this convenient ;-)

note: dollar a-piece tickets in Store here include Paypal fees.
click arrow to reveal 5 and 10-pack options

Not looking for a prize, just want to support Improvement Fund projects? Use the handy DONATE button to show a little love to your Co-op any ol' time, in any amount.

The Tide is Turning Against Genetically Engineered Foods

source--Food & Water

From power grabs like the Monsanto Protection Act, to people fighting back in Connecticut by passing the first genetically engineered foods labeling law, the news has been full of stories about GE (or GMO) foods. Recently, even the Colbert Report talked about GE wheat! While not all of the news is good, the fact that it's being shared is a very good thing, because it means people are listening.

First, there was the farmer in Oregon who discovered GE wheat growing in his field, where it never should have been, because GE wheat has never been approved for use! We still don't know how it got there, or how widespread it might be.

Then, there's GE salmon. We've known for a long time that GE salmon could breed with wild salmon if it ever escaped, spreading its engineered genes and decimating native populations. Now, a Canadian study has found that GE salmon can also breed with brown trout, an entirely different species of fish, and that their hybrid offspring can out-compete native species. With GE salmon on the verge of potential approval by the FDA, this news is alarming: if approved, GE salmon could wreak havoc on our environment.

New GE products are being considered for approval every day. Soon, a GE potato could find its way into McDonalds fries (more news on that soon). To make matters worse, Congress's last budget bill included the so-called "Monsanto Protection Act" which lets biotech companies keep selling GE seeds even while lawsuits are challenging the approval of those products.

But it's not all bad news. Across the country, Food & Water Watch is fighting alongside our partners and concerned citizens like you to require labels on GE foods, so we can all know what's in the food we're eating. Just this spring, we celebrated, as Connecticut became the first state to pass a GE labeling law! But the law won't go into effect unless other states pass GE labeling laws. So now we're redoubling our efforts in other states, from Maine to Illinois and beyond, and at the same time we're pushing for a federal law to require GE labeling nationwide.

We can't stop GE foods without help. We need more field organizers on the ground educating the public about the risks of GE foods. We need more independent research like our recent corporate profile on Monsanto. We need more citizens urging their lawmakers to do the right thing and stand up to Monsanto.

For more information log onto

“A Canadian study has found that GE salmon can also breed with brown trout, an entirely different species of fish, and that their hybrid offspring can out-compete native species.”
-Food & Water Watch

Member Appreciation Day is the 3rd Tuesday of each month.
Members may bulk-order from the UNFI Catalog at 15% above wholesale.

Quick Tips to Restore Curb Appeal

-submitted by Ricky Foster

A tidy well-organized yard provides an appeal for home that welcomes a priceless peace of mind. Bring sparkle to your yard and home with these few simple economical tips:

Relocate large yard items. Relocating larger items to a less central place on your property may seem trivial; however, when rearranged from largest to smallest in a strategic design for ease of access as well as perceptive appeal, this simple idea can liven up any yard. Getting help from a yard work specialist to recycle or dispose of unused items would also prove a great value for the face-lift of your landscape.

Pressure wash curb, house, garage, and other structuresYou may also consider pressure washing key parts of your structure that bear signs of mold, mildew, or coloration from hard water deposit. In cases where there are touch stains, consider using white vinegar, which dissolves dirt, hard water deposits, and is a natural deodorizer. More about that in future articles

Organize tools. When organizing anything the same basic rules apply. First, define your space that is to be organized (space usage, area available for storage, etc.). Next, sort your stuff, tackling a small section at a time. Identify what is needed (used regularly), what should be donated, what is to be sold, and candidates for trash or recycling. Consider recycling items that can be nailed on a wall or post to store other usable tools. If you need to spend more than 5 minutes to think of when you last used an item or how you will use it next, you probably don’t need it.

Making a checklist goes a long way towards accomplishing your goal. Organize your list with the simplest to achieve task at the top. This often provides motivation to complete the list.

If your list seem a bit overwhelming or you just don’t have the time don’t worry there is good news: Call Ricky at 486-4406 (email and he or his team would be glad to help you accomplish your goals outside or inside your home.

The Co-op currently has several Board seats open – any member may be elected to the Board of Directors. If you have been wondering how you can help YOUR Co-op thrive now is the time to consider this worthwhile endeavor! Talk to one of our current Board Members or call Rob Thompson at 486-1061 to find out how!

Do You Ever Eat Carrots, Sweet Potatoes, Flax or Sunflower Seeds?

A very important message from Food & Water Watch

Most of us think of these foods as a nutritious part of our diet, providing us with the vitamins we need to stay healthy. But the EPA is considering a rule that would change that, by raising the amount of Roundup chemical residue that's allowed on many vegetables and seeds that we eat every day.

Sign here to tell the EPA that you don't want to be exposed to more chemicals on your food!

Monsanto's ubiquitous weed killer, Roundup, has been sprayed on farms across America for decades. Now, 14 varieties of Roundup-resistant "superweeds" exist, creating enormous hassle for struggling farmers. To combat the superweeds, Monsanto wants farmers to buy and spray even more Roundup on their crops, perpetuating an endless cycle of toxic chemical overuse. To make matters worse, they are pressuring the EPA to change the rules and allow for more chemical residue on the vegetables we eat.

Demand that the EPA protect our health by not raising the amount of Monsanto's Roundup chemical that's allowed on carrots, sweet potatoes, flax and sunflower seeds.

When you take action to protect your food, it works! Activists like you recently flooded the USDA with 400,000 comments against "agent orange" corn, and the agency agreed to conduct an environmental impact statement to examine this product's health effects. Now, we need to sound the alarms again, telling the EPA not to allow more pesticides on our food.

So, submit your public comment today to protect your health! Take action today for your health and the environment. Visit our website to find out how.

Thanks for taking action,
Jill Pape, Online Organizer Food & Water Watch

Musings from Board Member Rob Thompson

A rubber spatula is a wonderful tool. It is an essential tool in helping to save the environment. This works in two ways.

First using the spatula one can get the last bit out of the container, be it oil from the measuring cup, the whipped up eggs or scraping out the last of the serving dish for the leftovers. Second by removing the food or oil or whatever clean up is made easier and uses less soap to wash the container.

This process of using a spatula is much like recycling. It takes some dedication and a couple of good spatulas (I use a small, very flexible one most of the time.) The one or two or three percent of food, water and soap conserved may not seem like much, but in our shrinking world it mounds up.

Look for the SALES throughout the Co-op, displayed with white shelf tags below the items.

Members receive special discounts on these products.

Some are one-time deals, some are monthly sales, and others are introductory promotions.
Price tags show member prices and non-member prices, with the sales being for our Co-op Members only.


New Store Item: Hand Woven Baskets From Ghana--Every Basket Helps

The Co-op is carrying a new line of merchandise--beautiful hand woven baskets, hats and fans, which are made in a small town in the Upper East region of Ghana, Africa.

Located directly near the southern edge of the Sahara Desert, agriculture is challenged and these woven items provide much needed funds for thousands of families. A large percentage of the villagers make these baskets, with this being their main source of income. Your purchase of one of these lovely woven bas­kets greatly helps these families.

The proceeds from the sale of the baskets help in many ways. Funds have recently provided health care for the weavers and their families, school supplies for the children and building community weaving centers, which serve over 250 weavers.

“Weaving Hope, Healthcare and Education” is possible for these villagers and their families. With your purchase you can be assured of obtaining a beautiful, high-quality woven basket and you help the people of Bolgatanga, Ghana live healthy and enriching lives.

For more information check out their website at:, or stop by the Co-op and check out the display.

Co-op Board of Directors meets at the Community Cultural Center on the first Tuesday of each month, beginning at 5:30pm (subject to change)


This edition of the Co-op News was edited by River Jones,
and published as a service to the members of the Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op.

Letters and articles are welcome from members.
Please email your submission for consideration to us at .

Views expressed in The FireStarter are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the Co-op management, directors, or membership. Acceptance of advertising does not indicate endorsement by the Co-op of the produce/ service offered.