Autumn 2015

Volume 31, Issue 4

New and Noteworthy at the Co-op

Where has the summer gone? It seems like fall is here way too soon! But even though the calendar says summer is over, the Co-op is still offering our summer specials, such as the natural colored shopping baskets, select summer clothing and all the Starlights, which are available to members at a special price. That is in addition to the storewide Member Specials that shoppers can count on throughout the year.

The recent wildfires that plagued the county are basically under control, but the effects will be with us all for some time. Some of our members experienced heavy losses and many others dealt with evacuations and the stress of wildfires threatening our homes. Aside from the Tonasket evacuation period, the store has been able to maintain regular business hours all during the fires. “We donated substantial quantities of supplies to the distribution center for the firefighters”, stated store manager, Alice Simon, “and food items were donated to the CCC Soup Kitchen”, which produced three meals a day for weeks. Again, our little store has stepped up to help care for the community that we serve. (People have also been using our Corkboards Free Classifieds to post what they need or what they have to offer to fire affected folks.)

In other news, Cougar Canyon Apiary, owned and operated by Ron Hull, has been able to resume production after losing most of their equipment in last year’s Carlton Complex Fire. Ron was able to make his first delivery of fresh delicious local honey this August. Thanks, in part, to generous donations made by Co-op customers and Main Street Market customers, Cougar Canyon is now back in business.

The 2015 annual Co-op Membership Meeting will be on November 22nd, at 3pm, in the front room of the Commnity Cultural Center of Tonasket (411 S Western Avenue.) Financial data will be reviewed, there will be board elections (director positions are open), and a soup and salad meal will follow. All are welcome!

Finally, we would like to welcome our new cashier, Amanda Jeffries, who started with us at the end of July. Amanda is from Oroville and has a 5-year old son, Mykle. Amanda brings over 15 years of retail experience to the position. How does she like her new job? Her answer: “This is the happiest, friendliest atmosphere I’ve ever worked in!”

Calendars for 2016 are now in stock. Shop soon for the best selection!

Green Okanogan, Tonasket's Recycling Center Up and Running

After years of planning and preparation, GO Recycle center, the first recycling facility in Tonasket, is operational. Thanks to a dedicated group of community members, local residents can bring many of their recyclable items to GO during regular business hours which are, Tuesdays noon-6pm and Thursdays and Saturdays, 10-4 with a Flea Market taking place on Thursdays as well.

The facility has a fairly extensive list of what they will take for recycling, which includes metals, some plastics, paper and E-Cycle (electronics). However they can’t take everything in these categories and it is advised to check GO’s website at to be sure of what are acceptable items. It is anticipated that the list of what they can take will increase as time goes on.

Annual Member Mtg Novemeber 22, 3pm, at the CCC. Board positions are open. Soup and Salad meal will follow. All are welcome!

Millions Against Monsanto Reports: Monsanto Favorite Glyphosate Soon to Join California's Cancer List

from Organic

In an unprecedented move, the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) will soon start labeling the common herbicide ingredient glyphosate a "probable carcinogenic," stepping up efforts to protect health and wildlife in the agriculture-heavy state even as use of weed killers that include such toxins hits an all-time high.

Under Proposition 65, California is required to publish a list of chemicals known to cause cancer or birth defects. Glyphosate--favored ingredient of agrochemical producers like Monsanto and Dow--was declared "probably carcinogenic to humans" in March by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a body of the World Health Organization.

"California's taking an important step toward protecting people and wildlife from this toxic pesticide," said Dr. Nathan Donley, staff scientist with the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD). "More than 250 million pounds of glyphosate are used each year in the United States, and the science is clear that it’s a threat to public health and countless wildlife species. It’s long past time to start reining in the out-of-control use of glyphosate in the United States."

In an email to EcoWatch, Donley added that California appears to be the first state to take such measures against the chemical. "As far as I'm aware, this is the first regulatory agency in the U.S. to determine that glyphosate is a carcinogen," he wrote. "So this is a very big deal."

Giving a chemical 'Prop 65' designation does not prevent sale or use of the substance, and glyphosate will only join the list after a 30-day period of public comment. Still, the news was received warmly by environmental advocates, who say it's important for California to acknowledge the IARC's findings and respond accordingly.

Rebecca Spector, west coast director at Center for Food Safety, told EcoWatch, "Since The World Health Organization’s research arm recently declared glyphosate is probably carcinogenic to humans, listing it under Prop 65 and requiring it to be labeled as such is a logical next step."

The Okanogan Family Faire will be held October 9th, 10th and 11th. Everyone is Welcome!

BPA Is 100 Times More Toxic Than We Thought


Most of us have heard that bisphenol A (BPA), found in many consumer products like plastic bottles and cash register receipts, is toxic. The market is now flooded with BPA-free plastics, and consumers should be aware that many of them contain other harmful analogs like bisphenol S and F.

All bisphenols are known to disrupt the endocrine system of the developing human male fetus and are likely responsible for a portion of the dramatic worldwide increase in male reproductive disorders. New research on human tissue samples suggests that BPA is 100 times more toxic than previously believed.

The research also suggests, counter intuitively, that BPA may be more harmful at lower doses. At higher doses, the cell is likely to die and be replaced. At lower doses, the cell undergoes changes consistent with cancer, endangering the entire organism.

The devastation of the wildfires in our county last month was far reaching. To make donations and see the current status of the new non-profit North Okanogan Recovery Network visit the CCC's "Fire Recovery Donations" page

City of Spokane Sues Monsanto

from Organic

The city of Spokane has filed a lawsuit against the international agrochemical giant Monsanto, alleging that the company sold chemicals for decades that it knew were a danger to human and environmental health.

The lawsuit, which does not specifically state what the city is seeking in monetary damages, also alleges that Monsanto is responsible for the high levels of polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, in the Spokane River.

Marlene Feist, the city’s utilities spokeswoman, called the suit “long-term litigation,” and noted that the city will spend $300 million to keep PCBs and other pollutants from entering the river in coming years.

PCBs have entered the river by various means, including through commercial and industrial products such as paint, hydraulic fluids, sealants, inks and others.

Charla Lord, a spokeswoman with Monsanto, said in a statement that the company is “reviewing the lawsuit and its allegations. However, Monsanto is not responsible for the costs alleged in this matter.”

The Spokane River has elevated levels of PCBs, which have been found in its water, sediments, fish and wildlife. The PCBs enter the river, in part, through the city’s water and storm water discharges. It is currently trying to meet a 2017 federal deadline to stop pollution from entering the river. It has adopted an Integrated Clean Water Plan, and is adding more levels of treatment at its water treatment plant, efforts that convinced the law firms to represent Spokane, Feist said.

Though the city does not state an amount of money it’s seeking, the suit said it seeks “compensatory damages,” lawyer’s fees, interest and any other relief the court deems appropriate.

The lawsuit names two companies that spun off from the corporation in the 1990s, and joins other municipalities seeking damages from the company, including San Diego, San Jose and Westport, Massachusetts.

The outside law firms representing the city (Baron and Budd, and Gomez Trial Attorneys) have experience with PCB litigation.

Baron and Budd, a national law firm with environmental litigation experience, currently offers free PCB testing to any school built between 1950 and 1980. According to the firm, it specializes in lawsuits designed to help public entities recover the cost of remediation. The company has worked with people affected by asbestos.

Scott Summy, the lead attorney on the Spokane case, has been the force behind much of this litigation, and regularly represents public water providers whose water is contaminated by chemicals. He was also involved in lawsuits arising out of the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

Along with Baron and Budd, the Gomez firm is part of San Jose’s case against Monsanto.

Monsanto was the sole producer of PCBs between 1935 and 1979, and the company commonly sold the chemical under the name of Aroclor nationally. According to the suit, the company knew PCBs were toxic while it still produced and marketed the product, but concealed these facts until Congress passed the Toxic Substances Control Act, which banned most PCBS beginning Jan. 1, 1979.

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

Current Tonasket Co-op 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.

The "Dirty Dozen" (+2): Foods You Should Always Buy Organic

Apples, Celery, Cherry tomatoes, Cucumbers, Grapes, Nectarines,

Peaches, Potatoes, Snap Peas, Spinach, Strawberries, Sweet Bell Peppers,

Hot Peppers, and Kale/Collard Greens

List compiled by The Environmental Working Group"

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

The Dark Side of McDonald’s World Famous Fries

from Organic

There's no doubt that McDonald's french fries are, as the company regularly trumpets, "world famous." But like many who are touched by fame, those legendary taters have a dark side that remains largely hidden from public view. And this dark side has nothing to do with the obesity crisis.

McDonald's purchases more than 3.4 billion pounds of potatoes grown in the United States every year. The company's preferred variety is Russet Burbank. While certainly delicious to the "billions served," the problem with this 130-year-old variety is its susceptibility to rot and other diseases, which means farmers regularly employ a significant amount of pesticides on their crops.

Rural communities in northern Minnesota that live near potato farms that supply the Golden Arches have had enough. They have become victims of "pesticide drift," in which the wind carries sprays and dusts away from the farms where they are used to other regions, negatively impacting public health, the environment and other crops.

In Minnesota, where 98 percent of the state's 50,000 acres of potatoes are sprayed with chemicals to prevent the growth of fungus (as often as every five days during the height of the growing season) pesticide drift is a major problem. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that up to 10 percent of agricultural pesticide sprays drift from the target crop.

According to air quality tests across several Minnesota counties conducted between 2006-2009, a third of air samples test positive for one or more pesticides, including probable carcinogens like chlorothalonil and pendimethalin, chlorpyrifos (which has shown to disrupt nervous system development in children), PCNB (a probable carcinogen and suspected endocrine disruptor) and 2,4‐D (a possible carcinogen that puts male farm workers who use the product at risk for abnormally shaped sperm.)

Co-op Board of Directors meets on the THIRD MONDAY of each month, at 6:00 pm . in the North Valley Hospital Board Room in Tonasket, at 126 S Whitcomb, in the Administration Building. (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. Newsletter editors and store management will review all submitted articles to determine suitability for publication.

Co-op Board of Directors:
Sunny Lanigan, Chair
Cassandra Schuler, Vice Chair
Rob Thompson, Treasurer
Ron Jones-Edwards, Secretary
Aaron Kester
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