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March 24, 2015

Table of Contents:


Chris Dilley

Chris Dilley

General Manager  

Hello all,

I don’t know about you, but I’m still riding high from our Annual Owner Meeting on Saturday night! It was a great party, the live set from Maraj was a blast, and I heard from many of you that you had a spectacular time. Thanks to everyone who helped to put that event together. 

I was happy to be able to present the 2014 PFC Annual Report at the meeting, as well. If you missed it, please pick one up in the store or download it here.

The election was also a success! I spent some time Sunday morning confirming the results, and wanted to share the final results with all of you.
Total Eligible Voter count: 1817 (active members who are up to date on dues with a 45-day grace period)
Total eligible voters that voted: 307. This is 16.9%, with a quorum of at least 10%. 

Congratulations to our three board directors elected this year:

Chris Moore (incumbent)
Hether Frayer (incumbent)
Kevin Ford (newly-elected)

And a HUGE thank you to the five others who ran: Torrie Condet, Liz Hinz, Sokhna Heathyre Mabin, Kris Miller, and Paul Solomon. All of you would have made excellent contributions on our board, and we look forward to finding ways to keep you all involved. I know it was an extremely difficult decision to vote for just three. 

All of the bylaw proposals were also approved!

  • Annual meeting timing proposal - 94% in favor
  • Dissolution of Co-op requiring 2/3 vote proposal - 96% in favor
  • Asset retention in Kalamazoo proposal - 98% in favor
  • Allowing online voting proposal - 90% in favor
Thanks again to all of you – this kind of engagement and participation is what makes us stronger together! 


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Rosie Florian

Rosie Florian

Produce Manager

Keep up the healthy living with People's great prices on organic produce! We're stocking organic strawberries for $3.99 each quart, and 3lb. bags of organic fuji apples for $3.99 each for yet another week.  

Also try out an organic ataulfo mango, the cutest little yellow fruit that exists, for $1.99 each. If you're loving the fresh pears, you'll love the organic green Bartlett's on sale for $1.99 per pound for owners. Organic red Bartletts are coming this weekend, and rumor to be pleasantly aromatic and picture perfect. We know you love feeding your family awesome organic produce and we're constantly scoping out great deals to provide you with the best possible prices!  

I've recently been crunching heavy on the local organic bok choy from Good News Farm. It's so juicy and dark green, and it's perfect when chopped up into ribbons for your salad tonight, dipping into your favorite hummos for lunch, or tossed into your stir fry tomorrow. Since it's super affordable for just $1.99 each, might as well get two! 

If you're pacing back and forth waiting for those cute little asparagus heads to pop out of the ground, you've got a ways to go. Lucky for you we've got organic asparagus from California so you can really sink your teeth into the excitement of the season even though it's still March. Like most of us, it's hard to wait for spring! Then, when Michigan asparagus season begins, you'll be so happy because let's face it, the Michigan stuff is the best stuff. 


Bree Bird

Bree Bird

Farmer's Market Assistant

Kalamazoo Farmers Market will kick off the 2015 market season on May 2 - that’s just 39 days away! 100-Mile Market opens May 6 - 43 days from now! It’s happening y’all! 

If you are reading this, chances are you care about food and I feel safe in saying that you know a thing or two about the stuff, too. Did People’s help you gain knowledge or resources you have used in your food discoveries? 

At our Annual Meeting this last weekend I had the privilege of facilitating a small group discussion about People’s and community engagement. The topic that came to be focused upon was education. I heard that our owners feel strongly that we at People’s have a role to play in helping to educate the public about food.  

We discussed ideas about how to do this in our store (“Fun Facts” signage around new or interesting products, nutritional labeling on our Deli items), as well as in the broader community (promoting, educating, and increasing access to the Farmers Markets, cooking classes and demonstrations, signs on the side of buses). The great thing about cooperative business is that together we can make it happen! 

Education is a focus of the market teams. Together with owner volunteers and community members we work to provide educational programming to youth and our broader community. Look to your Farmers Markets for workshops on bucket gardening, tours for KPS students, Girl Scouts and other youth programs, cooking demonstrations and more. In fact, this season there will be something to learn at least monthly as we partner with Mariel Borgman, Community Food Systems Educator with MSU Extension, to bring easy and fun food education right into a market tent! 

If you have more ideas on how PFC could work towards food education in the community, please contact me or fill out a comment card in the store. If you are interested in sharing what you know about food through a workshop or demonstration, please contact me! I look forward to hearing from you. 

Remember: KFM and 100-Mile Market Vendor Applications are now available! To receive an application email me: farmhand@peoplesfoodco-op or stop by the store and ask a staff member for a paper copy.


Abby Wood

Abby Wood

Deli Assistant

Hey there, take a seat. Let’s talk sandwiches.  

Here in the deli, we understand the artistry, the craft, and the dedication that goes into making a truly amazing sandwich. We balance flavors and textures carefully while ensuring the proper sauce-to-filling ratio for perfect structural integrity. Check out our latest masterpieces, like the Great Panino (with baked balsamic chicken, marinated artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes and more) or our old-school Muffuletta (ham, salami, cheese, tapenade and veggies on a baguette, wrapped and pressed overnight).  

Our options include a little somethin-somethin for everyone, with flavorful vegan options like our Pesto Tempenade (with marinated tempeh, pesto, olive tapenade, and fresh veggies) and wheat-free versions of all your favorites like our classic Roasted Turkey (with red pepper aioli, sprouts, provolone and red onion).


Abbie Miller

Abbie Miller

Wellness Buyer

Have you seen the amazing sale we've got right now for select bulk herbs and spices?? I knew it was coming, but when I saw just how big the discounts were, I got super excited! If you've never thought about buying your culinary herbs and spices in bulk, this is the perfect time to start!

Here is just one example of how cost-effective it is to buy in bulk at regular prices: Frontier Co-op's Organic Ground Cumin is normally $6.59 for a jar, vs. $28.99 per pound in bulk. While $28.99 might seem like a large number, buying the same amount of cumin in bulk would cost just $3.19. And during our bulk spices sale, it costs only $1.23. That’s an 81% savings! 

So, if you use any of the following herbs and spices, I would highly recommend taking advantage of this opportunity to stock up! Herbs and spices currently on sale until the end of March are:  

  • Organic Ground Cardamom
  • Organic Chili Powder Blend
  • Organic Ground Cinnamon
  • Organic Garlic Granules
  • Organic Ground Ginger
  • Organic Oregano
  • Organic Paprika
  • Organic Medium Grind Black Pepper
  • Organic Whole Black Peppercorns
  • Organic Thyme
  • Organic Turmeric 

If you think you would love to have a pound or more of any of these, you can also place a special order for one-pound bags any time!


Max Hospadaruk

Max Hospadaruk

Bulk & Bakery Buyer

Greetings, fellow Co-opticons! Max here filling in for Ken this week while he is staying at the Charleston Co-operative Automanton Fabrication and Maintanance Facility for his annual tune-up and update cycle. In addition to polishing his brass gearwins and re-calibrating his glass flywheels, they'll be installing new, more efficient winding-springs and logic-rubrics, allowing him to manage the grocery department for longer, and in a wider variety of complex situations! Truly, Ken.2 will be a marvel of modern co-operative clockwork engineering!

If you live in Kalamazoo, I don't need to tell you: Oberon Day is a big deal 'round these parts. This fruity-but-straightforward wheat ale is, for many both in Michigan and abroad, the definitive spring and summer beer. Grab a 6-pack of bottles for $9.99 or a 4-pack of cans for $7.99 and let your high spirits fly in the face of the chilly months we call spring!

Once I decide that winter is over, there's no going back for me, even if it snows. So my grill is officially out and ready for action!  Even if you're sticking to your indoor kitchen, we've got a great new treat for you from Grandpa's Best in Portland, Michigan: organic pork chops! Now in the fresh meat department, these thick cuts are GMO- and antibiotic-free, locally and organically raised just 70 miles away on Hi-Lo farms! Pick up a pair of these bone-in beauties for just $8.99/lb.!

Let's round out our "pretend it's warm out" meal with a cookout classic: baked beans! Right now grab three cans of any Field Day Organic beans for just $5! Personally I'm partial to my own "special recipe" (that means I use whatever's in my cupboard) baked black beans, but we've also got ready-to-go baked beans, along with all the staples like Pinto, Kidney, and Garbanzo! 



Register for one of our fun, interactive cooking classes! All classes are held in the Can-Do Kitchen (511 Harrison St). Values Program classes are $5 each; all other classes are $20 per adult, kids come free. And come hungry! In our classes, you’ll always eat well. Space is limited, so please sign up today with a friendly PFC cashier! 

  • Veggie Sushi – Tuesday, April 14, 6:30-8:30pm
    With raw food genius Sara Koz
  • Paleo Snacks – Tuesday, May 12, 6:30-8:30pm
    With Stacey Schmitzer


2014 - what a year! People's Food Co-op is so grateful to all of our owners, shoppers, and Kalamazoo's food community for another amazing year providing access to healthy food. Read our 2014 annual report for the low-down on the challenges and successes of the past year. Spoiler alert: PFC achieved record levels of local purchasing!


Monday, April 6, 7-9pm – 525 E Kalamazoo Ave, Kalamazoo
The Board meets the first Monday of every month. Our meetings are open to the public and all owners and community members are encouraged to attend. For more info, visit our Board of Directors page.


Monday, April 20, 7-8pm – People's Food Co-op (507 Harrison St., Kalamazoo) 

Volunteers are what make co-ops great, and we believe we've got some of the best volunteers in the country! If you've applied to volunteer at People's, you'll first need to attend an orientation session, where we'll make sure you have everything you need to join our all-star team. Please RSVP with our volunteer coordinator today! To learn more about becoming a volunteer, check out our Help Out page.


Wednesday, April 22, 8:30-9:30pm – People's Food Co-op (507 Harrison St., Kalamazoo) 

Perhaps you are a PFC owner, but you're not really sure what that means. Maybe you just became an owner and want an introduction to the store. Join us for one of our new monthly owner orientations! Gain a better understanding about ownership, learn more about your Co-op, and meet other PFC owners and staff. If you are interested in joining us, please RSVP with our general manager, Chris Dilley.


Saturday, April 25, 9am-4pm – People’s Food Co-op (507 Harrison St., Kalamazoo)

Join us to educate, participate, and celebrate all things home-grown at Grow-It-Yourself Day! We'll have live music, free workshops, plant starts for sale, and a chance to get your hands dirty in our Willy Street garden. More details to come!


Our owners are why we are here! Owners are shoppers and investors, and it is their investment, in part, that will make our expansion a success. Here are the current stats: 

Current owner count: 2767!
New owners in 2015: 83!
Current equity invested: $420,500!



To share news or an event, please email media and communications coordinator, Chris Moore.


Friday, March 27, 6-9pm – Westwood Fire Hall (1310 Nichols Road, Kalamazoo)

Architect, community organizer, and permaculture designer Mark Lakeman works to educate and inspire communities and individuals to creatively transform the places where they live through: broad participation, local ownership, and transference of authority to local populations, creative expression in planned and unplanned processes, and social capital as the primary economic engine of change. More information about this free event here.  


Thursday April 2, 6-8pm -- Arcadia Brewing Company (701 E. Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo)
If you are a food business owner, farmers market vendor, blogger, pinner, or instagrammer, you need mouthwatering food photos for your website, blog, Facebook, labels, and market booth. This workshop will give you crucial knowledge and hands-on experience so YOU can take excellent quality pictures of your food.
Derek Richmond, professional food photographer, and Missy Al-Azzawi of Mazawi Design Group bring wonderfully complementary perspectives to help you understand why and how to take great photos of your food. Bring your camera or phone, your food product or other simple props, and walk away from the workshop with a professional-quality photo on your phone and the know-how to keep taking beautiful food photos on a budget. Free, on-site childcare! Cost: $30, please register online or call 492-0261.


Saturday, April 18, 11:30-2pm – Pierce Cedar Creek Institute (701 W. Cloverdale Rd., Hastings, MI 49058)

Douglas Tallamy, who will be speaking at the Institute for "Restoring Biodiversity: Why Your Garden Matters," recently wrote an op-ed article for the New York Times about the benefits of gardening with native plants and the inter-relationships between plants and animals. In his view, being a gardener is more than growing pretty plants; it's about supporting and sustaining life.  Don't miss your chance to hear Tallamy speak, register today!


Monday, April 27, 7pm -- Stetson Chapel (1200 Academy St, Kalamazoo)
Tuesday, April 28   6:30pm -- Portage District Library (300 Library Lane, Portage)

Nicolette Hahn Niman's new book, Defending Beef: The Manifesto of an Environmental Lawyer and Vegetarian Turned Cattle Rancher, describes how we can eat a more balanced diet and support a food stream that is humane, ecological, and sustainable.

She shows how foods from cattle-milk and meat, particularly when raised entirely on grass- are healthful, nutritious, and an irreplaceable part of the world’s food production.  Sponsored by Portage District Library, The Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership at Kalamazoo College, and The Mary Jane Underwood Stryker Center for Civic Engagement at Kalamazoo College,  Kalamazoo College Library, People’s Food Co-op and Barrett’s Smokehouse with major funding from the Kalamazoo Community Foundation.


Saturday, May 2, 6pm (doors at 5:30) – Hispanic American Council (930 Lake Street, Kalamazoo)

A group of community organizations, educators and graduate students, independent media operators, urban farmers and professional cooks have started a face-to-face crowd funding process in Kalamazoo. The goal is to put together a meal every few months in order to generate funds that can kick start projects that might otherwise not get funded, or help them make a qualitative leap in their work. Groups will submit an application, and four applicants will be selected to make a five-minute presentation at the supper. 

Applications in English and Spanish are available at the FEAST website, and hard copy versions at the Arcus Center, People’s Food Co-op, Kalamazoo Peace Center, Hispanic American Council, and Black Arts Cultural Center. Tickets are available online or at the door. More information at


Saturday, May 16 – Lake Village Homestead Farm (7943 South 25th Street, Kalamazoo)

Lake Village Homestead Farm presents the Farm Wellness Day 5K, a celebration of the connection between the health of our bodies and minds and the health of the earth and animals that inhabit it. Click here to learn more and to register.


Sessions running June through August - Circle Pines Center (8650 Mullen Road, Delton)

Our co-ed residential camp program, open to youth ages 7-17, combines elements of a traditional summer camp (swimming, sports, campfires, theater, dance, and arts) with cooperative work projects (construction, organic gardening, trail maintenance and cleaning).  Educational activities focus on topics like climate change, food politics, and social justice.  Committed to supporting sustainable agriculture, kitchen staff works hard to provide delicious and nutritious meals from scratch using primarily local and organic ingredients. Click here for more information and to register.  


DeLano Farms with the Kalamazoo Nature Center is hiring Farm Crew members for the 2015 growing season.  DeLano Farms is entering its fifth season of production at the Kalamazoo Nature Center, with a goal of feeding CSA member families, taking food to a Saturday farmers market, and donating surplus local organizations.  Click here for more information and application instructions.


Because of PFC’s goal to provide access to healthy food for all, we have partnered with ERACCE(Eliminating Racism and Claiming / Celebrating Equality). If you’re interested in this work, please consider the following upcoming events, or visit ERACCE online for more information. All events are held at KRESA West Campus unless otherwise noted.
  • 2½-day Understanding & Analyzing Systemic Racism Workshop – May 14-16
  • 2½-day Understanding & Analyzing Systemic Racism Workshop – September 24-26
  • 2½-day Understanding & Analyzing Systemic Racism Workshop – December 3-5


Get connected with local food and local growers! Check out the full list of Kalamazoo Area CSAs.


Farmers' markets are providing a great opportunity to meet local farmers and to pick up some great food, including: 

Are you inspired to eat closer to home? Do you want to find sources of local foods and share with other locavores? Well, here's a tool you'll not want to miss. To join hundreds of others with similar interests, visit their Yahoo Groups page. To learn more, please email Lori Evesque.

If you know of someone who'd like to be added to our list, or have event suggestions to share, please email our outreach assistant, Chris Moore.