The FireStarter ~ Spring 2017

Volume 33, Issue 1

UPDATE: Co-op Employment Op--All Around Staffer Needed
posted online June 3, 2017 see details here

The Co-op Is Turning 40 This Year!

Spring's on its way, and there’s a lot of activity brewing at the Co-op. Besides the usual liveliness the new season brings, our Co-op is getting ready to celebrate its 40th birthday. This June we're going to throw a big celebration for our little store. We’re not sure yet of all the details, but four decades in business deserves big recognition--so mark your calendars and plan to join in on the festivities!

There are very few other businesses in Tonasket that can boast a 40-year lifespan, so celebrating is certainly appropriate for this milestone. Not only have we 'survived' all these years, we’ve thrived in such a way that we’re bigger and better than ever imagined. From the early days of selling bulk foods in a small house just outside of town, to our present location (which began in 1980), these past 40 years have been undeniably remarkable. Sometimes challenging, certainly gratifying, definitely buoyant, and a number of times quite unpredictable, the Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op has been a huge part of the alternative community in Tonasket for as long as most of us can remember.

The celebration will be June 23 & 24, hopefully featuring little events all weekend long. As part of our celebration we'll give away free samples of some of our favorite products, treats from our Deli, and we'd like to have activities for kids (what’s a party without fun happenings?) Fingers crossed the weather will cooperate, and much of the festivities will be able to take place outside...picture the garden/gazebo area full of kids, with face painting, games, music, story telling and more...and this might be a good year to have a float in Tonasket’s 90th Founder’s Day Parade on June 3rd, too.

It'll take lots of members and friends participating to pull this off, but WE CAN DO IT. We know people are busy and it’s hard to commit, but a dozen or so eager helpers can make the Co-op’s 40th Birthday Party an event to remember. There will be jobs of all types; tasks could be short and simple or big and complex – you decide! With enough help we'll really do this up in grand style! How do you see yourself involved? please let store managers Alice Simon or Julie Greenwood know.

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.

URGENT RESPONSE - Tell Congress to Cover Dietary Supplements in HSAs and FSAs to Improve Access and Lower Costs for Americans

source-- Natural Products Association

The Natural Products Association (NPA) started a grassroots campaign to encourage members of Congress to include dietary supplements in Health Savings Account (HSA) and/or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) legislation introduced as part of “Repeal, Repair, and Replace” efforts.

“The NPA is committed to working with Congress and the Trump Administration to save costs for patients and taxpayers who choose to supplement their diets and healthy lifestyles,” said Daniel Fabricant, Ph.D., CEO and Executive Director of NPA. “Giving people more avenues and opportunities to save money in preventative health care costs is a common-sense solution. Using our collaborative grassroots efforts is the best way to let Congress know what we expect from them.”

Support Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-Minnesota) in their efforts to pass the Health Savings Act of 2017, S.403 and H.R.1175 respectively, by asking your US Senators and Representatives to support this legislation. These bills will ultimately allow families to lead healthier lives, provide more freedom in how Americans choose to spend their money on preventive health care options, and lower overall healthcare costs.

Much of our nation’s focus is on disease treatment rather than prevention. The Health Savings Act of 2017 is a logical approach to address our nation’s health challenges by being proactive in preventative care and improving healthcare costs. Ask your U.S. Senators and Representatives to support legislation that will cover dietary supplements in Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA). This would ultimately allow families to lead healthier lives, provide more freedom in how Americans choose to spend their money on preventive health care options, and lower overall healthcare costs.

Tell Congress TODAY to include dietary supplements in HSA/FSA! Contact: Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers in Spokane at 509-353-2374
Senator Patty Murray at (866) 481-9186 or
Senator Maria Cantwell at (509) 353-2507 - 920 W. Riverside Avenue, Suite 697 - Spokane, WA 99201

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

New Line of Grass Fed Beef Coming Soon

Our store has increased its frozen foods selection, and we're excited to add products from a new purveyor Knee Deep Cattle Company, located near Coburg, Oregon. We'll be stocking a small line of their grass-fed beef products and be adding more if there's customer interest.

Knee Deep Cattle Company is based in the Willamette Valley of Southern Oregon, which is known for its ideal grass-growing climate – plenty of rain and mild weather. They've been dedicated to a compassionate and natural approach to sustainable animal husbandry since 1954. Their 100% grass-fed beef is a much healthier alternative to conventional grain-fed beef.

The animals are not only fed clean diets (including grasses, clovers, mineral supplements and salt), they are pasture raised and never confined to a feedlot. Cattle are born and raised right there on the ranch. The company also assures there have been no added hormones or antibiotics, cereal grains are never fed, and the meat is all USDA inspected.

For more information visit

Tonasket’s 90th Founder’s Day will be the first weekend of June. Interested In being in the PARADE on Saturday, June 3rd? Talk to Co-op manager Alice Simon or Julie Greenwood

Spring Faire May 19-21

The Okanogan Family Faire Spring Faire will be May 19-21 this year! Look for more information around the community and check their website at

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!

Roundup’s Active Ingredient Facing Wave of Legal Challenges as Alleged Carcinogen


Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s marquee product, Roundup, is coming under fire from hundreds of legal challenges across the U.S., with individuals alleging that the herbicide is carcinogenic and linked to cases of non-Hodgkins lymphoma.

Whether the cases pay out for plaintiffs remains to be seen. But at the very least, they represent a big opportunity for litigators, with some thinking “glyphosate” could become a legal buzzword on par with asbestos.

“How could we have ever believed that it is a good idea to grow our food with poisons?”
– Dr. Jane Goodall

Beautiful New Mosaic Artwork Adorns the Walls of the Co-Op

Have you seen the new, beautiful sign at the Co-op? A colorful, illuminated mosaic sign sits atop the entryway to the store’s Garden Room, which features our seating area and the wall with our coolers.

It has been a long standing desire of the Co-op Board of Directors to commission an art project, created by a local artist, to be featured in the store. The Board had set aside $500 of Okanogan Family Faire grant money for this project, and asked for proposals from artists late last summer. Several Co-op members submitted a proposal of original artwork, and Carol Lanigan's mosaic sign was selected.

Carol designed and created the actual mosaic art piece, figuring it probably took at least 50 hours in all. Bruce Corrigan made the frame and light box, and Sunny Lanigan and Reed Engel installed the piece.

It's a nice way to begin our 40th Anniverary Year. We hope you enjoy this lovely addition to the store each time you shop or lunch.

Organic Bytes from the Cornucopia Institute

Big Poultry Responsible For Bird Flu

New research suggests that bird flu is caused and spread by factory farmed birds, and not brought in by wild birds, which are commonly blamed for the epidemics of the last decade. In fact, there are no recorded instances of bird flu in wild bird populations until 2005, and deadly flu in wild birds has been found to originate in farm outbreaks, not the other way around. However, Big Poultry is determined to pin bird flu outbreaks on wildlife rather than accept data that show how the industrial production model is responsible for the increasing virulence of bird flu.

From One Biotech Governor of the Year to Another: Welcome to the USDA

Tom Vilsack, USDA Secretary during the entire Obama administration, recently met with Sonny Perdue, the Trump administration nominee for Secretary of Agriculture. Vilsack and his colleagues formed intimate partnerships with corporate agribusiness lobbyists, including the Organic Trade Association. Under both Republican and Democrat administrations, USDA policies have been friendly to corporate farming and food processing interests. Cornucopia will be watching the first moves of the Trump/Purdue leadership at the USDA very carefully. We will reach out to engage with the new political appointees and assume that they are going to work in good faith, until proven otherwise

The State of Organic Farming

Jim Riddle, past chair of the National Organic Standards Board and an organic farmer, was recently interviewed about organic agriculture and politics. He questioned the wisdom of U.S. policy on organic grain imports, noting that U.S. farmers could be growing corn and beans for domestic markets, but are being undersold by questionable foreign imports. Riddle also expressed concern that hydroponics (produce grown without soil) are increasingly labeled as organic, in spite of organic law requiring certified organic agriculture to enhance soil health. While he hopes to find common ground with the new administration, he recalls that “This whole movement toward organic food and farming happened outside the political sphere, and it’s not going to go away.”

This birthday deserves a BIG BASH! We need lots of ideas and participation with our anniversary events, so if you'd like to help please let store managers Alice Simon or Julie Greenwood know!

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.

Sunny Lanigan, Chair
Ron Jones-Edwards, Secretary
Aaron Kester, Treasurer
Szarka Carter
Tom Fisher