Every day is Earth Day at your Co-op!

April 22, 2023

Our commitment to the planet is not just for one day or one month – it’s at the CORE of who we are as a community-owned grocery store. It’s in our DNA.

A core value of our Food Co-op is Centering Sustainability in all of our Decisions. Here are a few examples:

LOCAL FOOD:  We prioritize purchasing from local producers, including farmers, bakers, soup makers, and many more. By purchasing from local producers, we help to keep our shoppers’ hard-earned dollars local. And by minimizing transportation, we reduce carbon emissions because much energy is used to transport products long distances – sometimes across the globe. When you shop at the Food Co-op, look for our green LOCAL signs throughout the store. Be sure to check out the photos of some of our delightful local farmers and suppliers adorning our walls. 

BULK FOODS:  We’re super proud of our Bulk section where you can get everything from flour and other baking supplies to coffee, nuts, legumes, and much more. You can even make your own peanut butter and almond butter!  By shopping in the Co-op’s Bulk section, you are helping to eliminate lots of unnecessary packaging – and saving the planet from the impacts of the energy that goes into making the packaging and the waste that results when the packaging is disposed of. The cool thing about our Bulk section is that you can get as much or as little as you like of any of the available Bulk products and you’ll save money on these products because packaging adds to costs.

PLANT-BASED FOOD OPTIONS:  What we eat, and how that food is produced, affects not only our health, but also our environment. About one-third of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions are linked to agriculture and land use – far outstripping the impact of transportation or packaging. A significant component of food-related greenhouse gas emissions are caused by animal agriculture. Food choices are personal and need not be an all-or-nothing proposition. We are proud to offer many options, including local meats and dairy as well as plant-based choices. Our Food Co-op’s food offerings enable all of us to enjoy a healthy balanced diet while reducing adverse impacts on the environment.

FOOD WASTE:  We do our best to minimize food waste. According to the USDA, in the U.S., food waste is between 30-40% of the food supply. We can do better. At the Co-op we strive to align our ordering with your purchases and when food is nearing its expiration date, we mark it down in price. In the case of produce, when it cannot be sold, we donate it to farmers who pick it up at the Co-op as feed for their animals.

REFUSE. REUSE. UPCYCLE.  There are SO MANY ways that the Co-op strives to reduce waste. We were among the first in Fredericksburg to not offer plastic bags at the register and beginning this month we stopped offering paper bags, due to their carbon footprint. Instead, our volunteers make reusable tote bags out of donated t-shirts and when available, we offer these to customers along with the boxes in which we receive products. Because we are committed to reusing, instead of wasting, we have donation bins near our exit doors where you can place your oral care products, razor blades and other items and we take care of making sure they are sent for reuse. We even have a barrel where you can recycle your oyster shells!