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October 2019 Newsletter

Thank you to all who completed our survey...
Here are a few survey comments about why people shop at our co-op. 

"The produce and items sold are local, fresh and organic -- very important in a small town. Just having the co-op is extremely important."
"Local, small, personal."
"Small town values."

  1. It was loud and clear that everyone felt we should avoid shortening our hours. 50% felt we would adjust; 50% felt our co-op would take a big hit if we did. So, for now, we are sticking to the present hours.
  2. The 2 strong options to increase volunteerism included: Encouraging the teenage population of Lumby to train to become cashiers for work experience. Create 1 or 2-hour shifts for bagging of groceries and helping the cashier. We are presently exploring this second option, making it easy for members to volunteer spontaneously, with a buddy or to commit for an hour here or there.
  3. The top 5 other ways to support our co-op included: Use cash or debit only 78%; tell others about our co-op 78%; buy at our co-op first 70%; spend more at our co-op 52%. We are exploring a new merchant account provider.
    If you would like to read the complete survey results, please request them the next time you come into our co-op!

What's New at the Co-op?

New Finance Person to Join Julie Jones

Sylvie Desjardins has been a co-op member since 2018. She has agreed to relieve our stellar Financial Comptroller Julie Jones of many of her day to day tasks; she is Julie's backup person for keeping the books and helps provide analysis of sales. Sylvie is an associate professor of Mathematics and Statistics at UBCO and so is well-qualified for the role. Her range of interests includes an academic project on threatened butterflies of the South Okanagan Similkameen. 

We have a new Cleaning Fairy

Debbie Werner, our previous cleaning person, has moved on to new adventures. Kristin Wills conducted the interviews for this contract position and Lindsay Hannah was the best choice of a surprisingly excellent and long list of applicants. Lindsay is a staunch supporter of our co-op since our establishment. The 4 hours a week we thought she'd need is now only 2 hours - she's that good, that fast and that efficient. This means the windfall of funds can be diverted to other worthy areas. Thank you Lindsay!

Bella Stella has had to drop their organic label because they can no longer source organic milk within a reasonable distance. They will continue to get anti-biotic free, grass-fed milk from Vale Farms.
Our co-op continues to support our local farmers and consigners. We strive for transparency in all our products 
DID YOU KNOW....2.6 Million cooperatives have over 1 Billion memberships and clients. With data from 145 countries in all regionals of the world, this database is the most comprehensive data set on cooperatives. From the U.N.

Volunteer Highlight: Mary Anne Cook

The Face Behind the Signs!

Mary Anne has a been a staunch member of our co-op almost since its inception. She volunteers as a cashier and creates many of the signs you see everywhere. She has long experience in the graphic design industry. She and her husband Owen are the inspiration for 3 generations of Monashee Community Co-op members - daughter Jenifer, husband Evan Ziemer and now wee Julia!

Upcoming Events

Next Board Meeting

Wednesday October 16th at 6:00pm
1882 Grandview Avenue, Lumby
All members are welcome to the monthly board meetings to observe or to voice comments, concerns or compliments about specific issues. Reports are made on: Finance, Purchasing, Consigners, Marketing, Volunteer issues, Membership, Policies, Fundraising and the issues of the day. Contact monasheecommunitycoop@gmail.com for more information.
Purchaser Sharon: Points to Ponder 
JUST CALL ME COLUMBO. The Marketing Committee is creating a system so everyone knows where their food is coming from…this applies mainly to our bulk food, meat, dairy, eggs and produce.
Very rarely, a product will slip through that doesn’t fully meet our coop ingredient standards. For example, I researched the ingredients of pre-order popcorn but being seasonal, the ingredient list wasn’t available. The regular products used sunflower oil so I ordered it…unfortunately this seasonal product contained standard palm oil and conventional dairy, both of which we avoid! So when such situations do arise, a sign is put up making people aware. From there, you can make an informed decision to buy or not to buy. 
I want to encourage everyone to keep product suggestions coming. Remember our space is limited so please only recommend items you know meet our product ingredient policy and that you use regularly...I will do my best to bring it in.  Take care everyone!
Local in supermarkets can mean being from somewhere in the province as Jon Steinman pointed out in his new book on co-ops. At our Monashee Community Co-op, the focus is ALWAYS local first…second is Okanagan…third is BC…fourth is Canada…fifth is USA…sixth is Mexico and beyond.  We source products, particularly bulk items, that don’t come from China or other countries that have not the best reputation, even if certified organic.  
This Newsletter is created on computer and comes out once per month.  If you've got a few hours and your own computer, you can help out our Co-op from home!  We work collaboratively to make it fun, easy and a great skill to cultivate. 
Contact us to learn more!
Thank you for reading the October issue of our newsletter! We hope you enjoy the bounty and richness of the season. 

All the best,
Monashee Community Co-op Team
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