Thursday, October 7, 2010

A Portland Food Buying Club/Co-Op: Know Thy Food/Warehouse Cafe/Daisies and Dinos/Portland Green Parenting

(possible sign for the cafe) by Harmony Spangler)

I have the goal to eliminate my dependency on the grocery store as much as possible..

A couple of months ago, a friend recommended Portland Green Parenting's Food Buying Club: Know Thy Food founded by Rebecca Andersson, a local parent who cares about sustainability and healthy real food.  She worked very hard to coordinate local consumers with farmers and out of that work, a wonderful creation: a food buying club at close to wholesale prices where locals can buy fresh produce, meat, fresh fish, local tuna,  eggs, milk, (and more) from mostly local farmers.  She also offers some CSA's-eggs csa-meat, csa- fruit and veggies,..and an opportunity with Taylor Made Farms to buy a cow share for raw milk. You can also buy sides of beef, lamb, pork,  rabbit and chickens. I LOVE it!  and each time I pick up my food, I get to meet members of the community as well..people who are taking charge of their food buying power, etc..  It is like a year-round-farmers market. 

I was able to buy 50# of tomatoes for canning, and 30# of nectarines for jam, 15# of green beans for canning and freezing, etc..  (I don't have enough land to grow that much food for the winter!)  Of course, like being a part of a CSA, you have to be ready to be flexible for the differing food seasons when you buy this way; however, each season has its food highlights which are probably appropriate for the nutrition we need for that season.  Right now, apples and tomatoes are bountiful.  Treat this week: freshly pressed cider! There is also chocolate, coffee, kambucha...the list is ever growing and changing upon availability..which keeps it interesting and has made me appreciate the food more--instead of thinking I'm entitled to have ALL food varieties ALL year long.  When tomaotes are in season...I LOVE to eat tomatoes, etc.. In the winter- greens such as collard and kale, and root veggies are very nourishing.. (as well as being able to pull out from my stash of home canned and frozen produce)

New to the warehouse, Rebecca has also opened up a coffee shop for morning breakfast and coffee.  In the future there will also be a children's consignment shop included: Daisies and Dinos. 

To become a part of this food buying club, you join, offer a yearly donation, based on what you can afford, and shop online.  You pick up your food on Tuesday afternoon/eves.  You also pay a co-op free which is a percentage of the food you buy..It helps them afford the 5-year lease of the warehouse, and the labor of coordinating all that food.  What a wonderful service that is community based--


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