The FireStarter ~ December 2016

Volume 32, Issue 4

Will you be heading off to your first year of post high school studies this year? Are you or your parent(s) a Co-op Member? Would $500 help with your moving and/or start-up expenses? Then pick up a 2017 Scholarship Application at the Co-op, or view/download a copy at

SPECIAL UPDATE February 28, 2017
Member Benefit Change and New Sandwich Reward Card

Dear Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op Members and Shoppers,

With the passage of the Minimum Wage Initiative 1433, the Co-op, along with most other small businesses in Washington, is faced with new challenges.

We value our employees and fully support increased wages for all, which is the object of the initiative. However, with these wage increases must come other necessary changes in order to support the wages and maintain a sustainable business.

In order to comply with the new legislation and cover the additional costs without increasing retail prices at this time, the Co-op Board of Directors, after consultation with Co-op members and Management, has taken the following steps:

MEMBER ONLY SALES - We are committed to continuing to bring you money saving sales throughout the store. These are often your favorite everyday items, but also include new products of interest. These sales are only for current members and visiting current members of other co-ops! Be sure to look for the shelf tags.

BULK ORDERING - At this time, our bulk ordering policies remain the same.
Member Appreciation Day is the 3rd Tuesday of the month for bulk ordering from our main distributor at a 5% savings from the usual wholesale markup.

Other incremental changes may become necessary in the future as the wages are scheduled to continue to rise for several years.

We believe the membership will accept these changes as necessary to the survival of the Co-op which provides many jobs for local residents, a long-time connection spot, and a place to buy healthy foods - keeping the money in our community. Let us work together to ensure the future of the Co-op and the well being of the staff. We appreciate your support and look forward to serving you into the future.

--The Co-op Board of Directors and Management

Please join us this year as the Co-op celebrates our 40th anniversary!

--------- end Special Update --------

New and Noteworthy at the Co-op

This fall brought some exciting changes to the Co-op. To create space for a new (and much needed) freezer, the old herb and spice section was revamped with some great new shelves, and now has a more updated and user-friendly look. The shelving was built by Cascade Cabinets and allows a clear view of each jar, its label and its contents. The additional freezer has provided space for many new items with the emphasis on the protein part of the "dinner plate". The added freezer space has also allowed more room in the other freezers for new meatless items, desserts, and convenience foods.

We've brought in many new items and we will continue to do so while we find out which are your favorites. All the added items are either all natural, or organic or nitrate and preservative-free. We've also found new suppliers for many items, which has resulted in great variety and, in some cases, lower prices.

If you haven't explored this area of the store we invite you to do so and try the new products. We continue to seek the best goods to offer you a wonderful selection of 'clean' meat and seafood items, as well as all the other organic and natural products you love.

Here’s a run-down of some of our new purveyors and products (Click on the company names for additional product information at their websites)

The store’s Improvement Fund financed the new freezer and shelving, which is sustained by contributions from the store's operating fund, member contributions, and Okanogan Family Faire grants.

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.

A Seafood Company that Aims to Make the World A Better Place

Misty Fjord Seafood, a company with a conscience, has been a Co-op supplier of salmon portions for over a decade. Now that we have our new freezer, the store has been able to increase our offer¬ings of their products to include whole filets and two flavors of smoked salmon as well.

Misty Fjord sockeye salmon is caught in Bristol Bay, Alaska, home to the strongest wild sockeye salmon run in the world. Fran Kaul, of Winthrop, WA has been running a fishing boat in Bristol Bay since 1988, and has been a commercial fisherman since 1983. Their fish are caught by gillnet. Immediately after they are brought on board, the fish are bled and refrigerated. They are delivered to a processor within 4 to 8 hours, where they are flash frozen. The fish are then vacuum packed, preserving their fresh flavor.

Unlike farmed fish, wild salmon are harvested when they are mature, after their feeding cycle has ended, when their flesh is firm and their migration has begun.

According to the company, wild salmon are crucial to the health of our rivers. “They carry nutrients from the river to the sea and back again, entering the food chain as a vital feast for wildlife and fertilizing rivers and forests after they spawn, die and decompose.

“Wild salmon are one of the Northwest’s greatest renewable resources. Careful monitoring of wild runs, their watersheds and the ecosystems that support them ensure economic and environmental sustainability, healthy economic returns for future generations and the preservation of pristine habitat.”

Additionally, wild salmon have higher levels of oil content than farmed salmon “due to thousands of years of natural selection providing them with the fat reserves necessary to migrate and spawn thousands of miles.” The oil is high in Omega3s--the unsaturated fat that has been theorized to fend off heart disease, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, breast cancer and migraines. “The high levels of oil are the key to the salmon’s revered flavor, which is preferred by discerning chefs and consumers throughout the country.”

According to Misty Fjord, salmon are a sign of healthy rivers. “A river where salmon flourish provides us with clean water to drink and healthy fish to eat. If the salmon suffer, eventually we will too.”

On a philanthropic note, Misty Fjord offers a program where nonprofits and charitable organizations can work together with the company to raise funds where they are most needed. Currently they have teamed up with “One School at a Time”, a non-profit that works with rural, impoverished schools in Uganda, Africa. For more information on this endeavor, log on to

Carrageenan on its Way Out of Organic Food

from Organic

The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) voted to remove carrageenan from the National List of approved materials in organic food – a huge victory for organic consumers.

The decision was based primarily on consumer demand for products lacking the food additive that has been linked to gastrointestinal inflammation, cancer, and diabetes. The Cornucopia Institute has been instrumental in advocating for removal of this harmful ingredient from organic food.

Cornucopia published a detailed scientific review and spearheaded a consumer campaign where hundreds of individuals submitted comments describing their own negative health effects from consuming carrageenan. Cornucopia also submitted a petition at the NOSB meeting signed by over 47,000 individuals asking for the removal of carrageenan from the National List.

Many members of the NOSB affirmed that the presence of carrageenan in organic food is eroding consumer trust in the label. It will still be some time before the additive is fully out of the organic food chain. In the meantime, consumers seeking such products as organic infant formula, deli meats, dairy products, almond and soy “milks,” and nutritional supple¬ments can consult Cornucopia's buyer’s guide to carrageenan-free products. Log onto for more information.

Insecticides May Affect Cognitive Development in Children

from Cornucopia

Insecticides may affect cognitive development in children, according to a new study.

Pyrethroid insecticides, one of the most commonly used pesticides, benefits in a variety of sectors including residential pest control, public health and agricultural purposes. They can also be found in many domestic products such as lice shampoo and mosquito repellent.

With more toxic compounds having been banned due to health concerns, pyrethroids are now increasingly popular, and considered relatively safe for humans and mammals.

Now, a study published in the journal Environment International provides new evidence of neurotoxicity in humans from pyrethroid insecticides. An increase in the urinary levels of two pyrethroid metabolites in children is associated with a significant decrease in their cognitive performance, particularly in terms of verbal comprehension and working memory.

Pregnancy is also an important period of life for the future health of a child. So during the study, researchers included randomly selected mother-child pairs. They found that an increase in two metabolites – 3-PBA and cis-DBCA – in children was associated with a significant drop in cognitive performance. Such a drastic decline, however, was not exhibited for the other three metabolites.

Not only that, but what’s also concerning is the fact that children are exposed to pyrethroids on a daily basis. That’s because kids stand closer to the ground where there is pollutant-containing dust, and because they have more frequent hand-to-mouth contact, researchers say.

In children, pyrethroids are mainly absorbed via the digestive system, but are also absorbed through the skin. These chemicals are rapidly metabolized in the liver, and mainly eliminated in the urine as metabolites within 48 hours.

Given these contributing factors and the neurotoxicity of pyrethroid insecticides, the researchers believe these contaminants negatively impact the nervous system and its development in children.

“The consequences of a cognitive deficit in children for their learning ability and social development constitute a handicap for the individual and for society,” added co-author Jean-François Viel. “The research effort needs to be pursued in order to identify causes that could be targeted by preventive measures.”

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!

Take Action: Tell the Senate: Don't Let Monsanto Run the USDA and EPA

from Organic

Are you a fan of pesticide-free food and clean water? Think your tax dollars should subsidize organic regenerative agriculture, not Monsanto’s toxic degenerative agriculture? Then you won't like the direction things are headed under the Trump administration. Here’s what we know so far about President-Elect Donald Trump’s picks for leadership posts at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): Based on their track records, Trump’s appointees will likely let companies like Monsanto dictate food, agriculture and environmental policy. The only thing standing between Monsanto and near total control of the USDA and EPA? The U.S. Senate, whose job it is to approve about 1,100 presidential nominees before Trump’s cast of characters can step into their new posts.

Discouraged or not, it's our job to pressure the Senate to reject any appointee who won't commit to doing his or her job—which is to protect public health, not Monsanto.

To get involved, write to our WA State senators and voice your concern!

For more information log on to www.

NEWS FLASH: Co-op Turns 40

The Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op turns 40 this year!
Stay tuned for more information on our big birthday celebration, coming some time in the summer of 2017

Co-op Staff Picks

Some of our favorite products – try them, you’ll be glad you did!

Amanda: Beeler’s Breakfast Sausage – this is the best sausage I have ever tasted. It works well alone for breakfast or mixed in a sauce at dinner.

Julie: Iced Bhakti Chai drink – it’s made with soy and is cold and spicy (found in the store’s cold case)

Amy: Field Roast Apple Maple Breakfast Sausage – it’s a delicious vegan option!

Alice: Applegate Farms meats – no additives or preservatives. Can be found in our freezer, cold case and in some of our deli sandwiches.

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 .

Newsletter editor 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
Ron Jones-Edwards, Secretary
Szarka Carter, Treasurer
Aaron Kester
Tom Fisher