The FireStarter
is the newsletter of the
Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op

21 West 4th Street
Tonasket, WA 98855

Store Hours:
Mon-Fri 9-7 * Sat 9-6 * Sun 11-4

General Manager: Alice Simon
Assistant Manager: Julie Greenwood

as a cooperative natural foods market is to continue to be at the leading edge of supporting local, organic, sustainable agriculture, with a commitment to social and environmental responsibility, a hub for local products and services, and a source of information for healthy living.


Sunny Lanigan, President
Ron Jones-Edwards, Secretary
Aaron Kester, Treasurer
Tom Fisher
Casey Oberg
Charlene Rich
your name here?

The next regularly sheduled Board Meetings are: Monday,July 15, Monday, August 19, and Monday, September 16 at 6:00 pm, in the North Valley Hospital Board Room--for location see

About the Regular Meetings of the TNFC Board

For only $50 you can become a member of the Co-op. Payments can be made at the rate of $10 per year. You would become a lifetime member in 5 years. Seniors over 65 can become members for half the regular rate. Next time you visit the front counter, check to see your membership is current.
Be eligible to serve on the Board of Directors; Sell on consignment; be eligible for Member Sales; Volunteer to earn discounts; Bulk ordering at wholesale + 20-25% markup.

Membership & Bulk Orders

Email Us

Store Manager or general inquiries


Co-op Directors


Feedback for this website

Want to submit an article
for a future newsletter?


Don't frequently check this website and want to know when new info is posted? Get on our e-mailing list at


or follow us on FACEBOOK at

Homemade baked goods daily
Deli Window
Open 7 Days A Week, 11am-2pm
Sandwiches made to order
or grab & go from the deli case
Call ahead for fast service
Hot entrees Monday-Friday

Past FireStarter Issues

October, December


January, February-March, April, May, August-(Special Edition), October-November, December


February 2010, Spring 2010, Summer 2010, Winter 2010




Spring, Summer, August, September, November, December


January, February, March, April, May, Jun, Summer 2013, October


January, March, May-Spring, July-August, September-October, Fall 2014,


Winter, Spring, Summer, Autumn


Winter, Spring, Summer, Dec 2016


Spring 2017, 40th Aniversary, Fall 2017


Spring-Summer 2018, Summer-Fall 2018, Winter 2018 -2019

see our full Deli Menu

back to the Coop home page

Play Hangman from The Free Dictionary

The FireStarter ~ Summer - Fall 2019

Volume 35, Issue 1

(You don't have to be a member to shop at the Co-op :-)

New and Noteworthy at the Co-op

What’s new at the Co-op these days? Well, there’s plenty – so much that it’s hard to know where to begin. For starters, our produce case is fuller than ever with local organic fruits and veggies, thanks to many of our area farmers. What’s more, we’ve lowered our produce prices! For a complete account of produce and other local suppliers, see the list farther down in this newsletter.

As your Co-op, we’re dedicated to offering our customers the very best quality organic foods, however we can. And this brings up another noteworthy change, which can be found in our dairy cooler. For those shoppers who may not have noticed, our Organic Valley milk and half-and-half prices have been significantly lowered, as well, reflecting our commitment to making quality food available at an affordable price.

Speaking of dairy, be sure to check out the article at the end of this newsletter concerning milk and the pesticides and other residues found in conventional dairy. It’s not great news, but thankfully we have healthy options in our little store.

So, what else is new? For our hard working shoppers who are looking for some sore muscle relief, we’re now carrying CBD products, including supplements and a selection of creams and lotions. We intend to only feature products from well-known companies in the supplement field. So far, our offerings include products from Barleans, Leaf Therapeutics from Solaray, and ShiKai. Customer feedback has been very positive, so if you’re hurting, stressed or can’t sleep, you just might find something to help!

Some Co-op changes are going to take a little extra time, such as our precious garden area outside. It’s a little messy right now, but the end result will be worth it, offering open space and a more inviting area. Board member Aaron Kester is working on the renovations, which include repairs to the gazebo, bench, and picnic table. If anyone is interested in helping with this endeavor, either volunteering help or funds, please let one of our managers know.

Along with this face-lift, we’re making room for a new style of bicycle rack. For those who may not know, we advertise in Adventure Cycling Magazine, and Tonasket is a stop on the Northern Tier Bike Route. It’s important to try and not encroach on the area for pedestrians while accommodating more bicyclists, and still keep our green area for all to enjoy. We hope to have all of this completed soon!

There is one more exciting product that deserves notice, which is our new t-shirts, designed by Harvey Swanson. Available in two styles (traditional and women’s), the fabric is 25% cotton, 50% recycled plastic fiber, and 25% modal (tree-fiber). What’s more, they’re printed with non-toxic citrus and water-based inks. The Twisp-based company, Printmade Apparel, is dedicated to sustainable practices.

Thank you for your continued support, everyone!

Tonasket Co-op Member Appreciation Day is the 3rd Tuesday of each month. Members may bulk-order from the UNFI Catalog (our main distribtor) at 20% above wholesale.

The Power of the Pesticide Industry

--source Cornucopia Institute

The pesticide industry holds enormous sway over the U.S. government, regardless of the administration in power. Chemical manufacturers often produce their own safety data and studies, which are taken as fact by regulators. These companies also have helped draft laws meant to regulate their own products.

One example of this is glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup. The herbicide was deemed safe by regulatory agencies but has now been linked to cancer in ongoing lawsuits.

Some states are taking action against specific pesticides. For example, Vermont has banned consumer use of neonicotind pesticides as of July of this year and California is in the process of banning chlorpyrifos, a dangerous pesticide that can damage the developing brains of children, causing reduced IQ, loss of working memory, and attention deficit disorders.

Organic food is produced without these pesticides. Consumer watchdog agencies, such as the Cornucopia Institute, continue to monitor and report on this situation as it develops.

DID YOU KNOW: Every time we take a debit or credit card it costs the Co-op a small percentage. But that small percentage added up to over $8600 last year! We know it’s a great convenience to our shoppers, and we will always take your cards, but it would be a huge help to reduce that amount. Please consider using cash or a personal check next time you shop

Organic Agriculture and Climate Change

--source Cornucopia Institute

It is critical that we reflect on how our food is being produced. Our choices affect the health of our food system, our water, our air, and ultimately the global climate.

Generally, improving soil quality counteracts climate change by pulling carbon out of the atmosphere. This is similar to how prairies and forests act as carbon sinks in nature. When organic farmers take tired, poorly used land and improve it with restorative practices, they are doing the public a service.

Cornucopia offers research and scorecards that help people make conscious eating choices, including supporting real organic farms that build and maintain a resilient environment.

Local & Regional Producers Currently featured at Tonasket Natural Foods Co-op

Fruits and Vegetables Eggs
  • Eggs from Raintree Farm - Tonasket
Honey Fish Meat Salsa and Other Products Check out our Consignment Shelves for
  • locally made soaps and salves
  • selections from local authors and recording artists
  • Washington and Oregon wine and beer

We have a brand new shipment of HOT-WEATHER DRESSES in from Lei Lotus! Also in stock are Bags, Leggings and Tunics in many brightly colored designs and perfect for summer!

Don’t miss the 19th Annual GARLIC FESTIVAL

At Tonasket’s History Park
August 23rd & 24th
Friday 12-8 • Saturday 10-5
Live Entertainment all day * Wine, Beer and Cider Tasting * Local vendors * Food booths * Raffles * Lots of fun activities for kids!

Makers of GMOs May Be Asked to Regulate Themselves

--source Cornucopia Institute

In agriculture, genetic engineering has primarily been used to make crops resistant to pests and disease or able to survive the application of toxins, such as glyphosate. These traits do not occur naturally in the species in question. In practice, these genetically modified (GM) crops are poorly tested for safety, especially with respect to long term effects on the environment and human health. Safety studies are often conducted primarily by the same companies that manufacture and sell the GMOs in question.

Proponents of plant genetic engineering often point out that selective breeding also alters a plant’s genes. While true, the comparison is misleading. All of our domesticated crop species were developed from their wild counterparts via selective breeding.

Selective breeding is a process in which a breeder collects the seed from plants with desired traits and sows them in a future growing season. For example, northern gardeners may save seed from the very first tomato that ripens on the vine. After several years of propagating these plants, the gardener will have a strain of the desired tomato variety that ripens early.

In contrast, common technologies to create GM crops splice genes from unrelated organisms into crop plants. In the case of Roundup Ready Corn, glyphosate-resistant bacterial genes are spliced into corn DNA. Unfortunately, the herbicide-resistant genes have crossed with weeds in the field, unintentionally breeding “super weeds” that can withstand glyphosate application.

Although this Roundup Ready technology was billed as a way to lessen the amount of herbicide sprayed on fields, GMO farmers are instead spraying more herbicides than ever.

Other countries use a precautionary principle with respect to GMOs, requiring them to be proved safe before being allowed in the marketplace. The U.S. has historically preferred a hands-off approach, allowing chemical and biotech companies to essentially regulate themselves.

The Trump administration is pushing to further de-regulate how GMOs get into the marketplace. A proposed rule would allow companies to determine for themselves whether their GMO poses a risk to plants. If they decide it does not, the USDA will opt not to regulate it. You can submit your own comments to the USDA here: on or before August 5, 2019.

GMOs are prohibited in organic agriculture. Choose organic food and fibers to support farmers and farming methods that care for the health of humans, wildlife, land, and water.


  • Portabella Panini in three varieties
    choose Pesto-Mayonnaise sauce, Panini Sauce (horseradish, stone-ground mustard and mayo), or Greek Dressing
  • Classic Egg-Salad
    made with local eggs from Raintree Farm’s fresh organic eggs
  • Not-A-Rueben ( the sandwich that requires TWO napkins!)
    has turkey breast, swiss cheese, coleslaw, thousand island dressing, stoneground mustard, and is grilled on Rye bread

    Remember that ANY sandwich can be made toasted or grilled when ordered at the Deli Window, and on any bread, including gluten-free. Order just the way you like it! We use all natural ingredients (organic when possible) to create delicious, healthy lunches & snacks. We always use nitrate-free deli meats. Deli Window is open 11am-2pm, 7 Days A Week

    Hot Soup available Monday – Saturday
    Hot Entrée available Monday - Friday

    Save Time – phoneCall Ahead and your order will be ready when you are! Call-in hours: 9 am – 1 pm Pick up: any time after 11 am

    Look for SALES throughout the Co-op displayed with white shelf tags below items. Current Tonasket Co-op members receive special discounts on these products (price tags show member and non-member prices.) Discounts are one-time deals, monthly sales, or introductory promotions. These specials also apply to visiting members of other food co-ops – just show us your membership card!

    Put Down That Glass of Pesticides, Antibiotics, and Synthetic Hormones

    --source Cornucopia Institute

    If you consume dairy, a new study from Emory University suggests you are safest drinking organic milk. In their study of 35 conventional and 34 organic milk samples, 59% of the conventional products contained chlorpyrifos.

    Chlorpyrifos is a ubiquitous insecticide linked to lower levels of gray matter and IQ in children exposed prenatally. This toxin was nearly banned by an Obama-era decision with the backing of EPA scientists, but the current administration has called for more study. Other pesticides, including diazinon, atrazine, and permethrin, were also found in the conventional milk samples.

    Additionally, 60% of the conventional milk samples contained antibiotics. One sample contained amoxicillin residues exceeding the FDA limit, and more than one-third of the conventional milk samples contained sulfonamides, which are prohibited by law from use in cattle. The World Health Organization has declared that “antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest threats to global health, food security, and development today,” partly due to the overuse and misuse of antibiotics in livestock.

    Organic milk in the study contained no antibiotics, no pesticide residue, and no sign of synthetic growth hormone. Although it is important to know what organic dairy does not contain, the best organic producers go above and beyond organic regulations.

    Cornucopia Institute developed a scorecard, which is available on their website at: and it identifies the brands that employ superb grazing and animal welfare management and are transparent in their practices. The good news is that Organic Valley milk, which is what our Co-op carries, is well-rated.

    “Tea bags and strings may be common, but not all are created equal”, according to Traditional Medicinals herbal company. They use only 100% compostable, non-GMO verified tea bags and cotton strings, which creates a clean, healthy beverage. They go on to explain: “At Traditional Medicinals, we believe that in blending smart business with true sustainability” can hopefully benefit “every stakeholder – from suppliers and customers to Mother Nature herself!”

    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, President
    Ron Jones-Edwards, Secretary
    Aaron Kester, Treasurer
    Tom Fisher
    Casey Oberg
    Charlene Rich
    your name here?

    General Manager: Alice Simon
    Assistant Manager: Julie Greenwood