Ready for Co-op Month / September, 2018/ Co-op E-News & Updates:

Your Neighboring Food Co-ops:


Locally Owned by More Than


100,000 People Like You!

In this month’s E-news, check out:

Get Ready for Co-op Month!

The Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) is ready to celebrate Co-op Month!

October is just around the corner, and your Neighboring Food Co-ops across the Northeast will be joining over 40,000 co-ops and credit unions across the United States in celebrating Co-op Month.

This year, the National Cooperative Business Association has chosen “Co-operatives See the Future” as the theme for the month, inviting co-op members to work together to make the world a better place, now and for future generations.

“From healthy food to organic agriculture, Fair Trade to building stronger local economies, good jobs to alternative energy, food co-ops have been pioneers, empowering people to work together to make the world a better place,” said Erbin Crowell, Executive Director of the Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA). “And as our co-ops look to the future, we are working to build a more fair, sustainable, and inclusive economy that works for everyone.”

Stop in at your local food co-op to learn more about the co-op difference. And while you’re there, look for the “Go Co-op” signs on the shelves that identify products that were made by other co-operatives. You may be surprised by what you find, including dairy products from Cabot Creamery Co-op and Organic Valley, fresh produce from Deep Root Organic Co-op, fairly traded coffee, tea, and chocolate from Equal Exchange, beverages from Katalyst Kombucha and Green River Ambrosia, seeds and bulbs from FEDCO, naturally fermented vegetables from Real Pickles, Northeast Grown frozen fruits and vegetables from your Neighboring Food Co-ops — and many others.

How will your co-op celebrate Co-op Month? For ideas and resources visit:

To find a food co-op near year, and for more examples of how co-ops are building a better future for everyone, please visit

Thanks to CoBank for their support of our Neighboring Food Co-ops

Co-op Legacy in the Organic Farming Movement

The Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) sponsored a special track of workshops and presentations, “Co-operatives in the Food System,” at the 44th Annual NOFA Summer Conference, August 10-12, 2018 at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA.

The Co-op Track workshops on Saturday, August 11, 2018 – organized in collaboration with the New England Farmers Union and the Valley Alliance of Worker Co-ops – addressed a variety of ways in which co-operative enterprises contribute to a healthy, just and sustainable food system, including practical steps for small producers and co-ops to comply with new food safety rules, the legacy of food co-ops strengthening food security and empowering people to build sustainable food systems, and how to launch a new co-op or convert an existing business to a co-operative.

Co-op Track Workshop Presentations: 

Check out NFCA’s presentations:

Training: Enhancing Co-op Business Performance

Co-op Management Course: Enhancing Business Performance through Co-operative Management Practices —How to Strengthen Identity, Loyalty and Participation

Join Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) on November 1 – 3, 2018, in Greenfield, MA) for an interactive intensive professional development opportunity focused on leading thinking in co-operative management coupled with tangible examples of how to translate knowledge into action. Participants will include managers and board members from a variety of co-operatives including food co-ops, farmer co-ops, credit unions, and co-operative associations.

Who should come? CEOs/General Managers, senior managers, board members and keen employees to join us for this learning and networking event.


  • How to approach the management of a co-operative/credit union /mutual
  • Establishing a competitive advantage using the co-operative model
  • Co-operative economic trends

Lead Instructor: Daniel Côté.

Cost: $1,500 CAD/~ $1200 USD*

*NFCA Members receive a special rate of $1,000 USD (declare upon registration)

Find out more & Register:

September’s Cave to Co-op Special

This Month’s Cave to Co-op Artisan Cheese: Goatlet from Consider Bardwell Farm

Goatlet is a combination of 20% raw goats’ milk and 80% raw cow’s milk. It’s based on the award winning Pawlet cheese from Consider Bardwell Farm in Vermont. The goats milk comes directly from the farm and is Animal Welfare Approved while the raw cows milk comes from a select neighboring farm that provides the highest level of grass-fed cheese making milk. Goatlet has notes of a lemon cream pie and recently won 1st place in its category at the 2017 American Cheese Society Conference. This year, Goatlet took 1st place in the American Made/International Style mixed milk category!

Consider Bardwell Farm works with Crown Finish Caves, a cheese aging facility in the former lagering tunnels of the Nassau Brewery in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Thirty feet below the street, the caves were originally designed for fermenting beer and with an average year-round temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit, they provide the perfect environment for aging cheese as well. Crown Finish receives “green cheese”, or cheese around one week old that hasn’t developed a rind yet, from local, artisan producers and finishes aging it in the caves. The main tunnel currently holds 28,000 pounds of cheese, and it’s almost full!

Goatlet is delicious as a table cheese and notable on any cheese board or try it in a Monte Cristo Sandwich to highlight this delicious cheese.

Cave to Co-op is a partnership between Provisions International and the Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) to support artisanal cheese producers in our region and make their products more easily available to co-op shoppers. Each month, a delicious local cheese is featured at a great price.

More info and recipes

For more information on Cave to Co-op,

Thanks to Cabot Creamery Co-op for their support of our Neighboring Food Co-ops

Farm to Freezer: Autumn Soup Recipe

Change of seasons, time to make soup! Try this healthy, easy to make recipe that can be prepared in under 45 minutes using frozen veggies grown on Northeast farms from your food co-op!

When you purchase the NFCA’s Northeast Grown Frozen Fruits & Vegetables, you are not only making a good decision for yourself and your family, you are help keep our farm families thriving. Our frozen Blueberries, Organic Broccoli, Organic Edamame, Organic Green Beans, and non-GMO Sweet Corn are all produced, picked, processed, and packed right here in the Northeast.

Your local food co-op knows how important it is to have thriving regional farms and works hard to support local farmers and offer healthy ingredients for your family. Food co-op shoppers have purchased over 11 tons of Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) frozen fruits and veggies grown on Northeast farms and available only at your food co-op!

Change of seasons, time to make soup! Try this healthy, easy to make recipe that can be prepared in under 45 minutes.

 Autumn Soup

  • 2 tbsp olive oil or Ghee
  • 1 small chopped onion
  • 1 stalk celery chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 2 medium potatoes diced
  • 1 medium chopped carrot
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups green beans or 2 10 oz. NFCA frozen (thawed)
  • 5 cups chicken (or vegetable) stock
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt – or more depending on taste
  • 1/4 tsp dry basil
  • dash of thyme
  • chopped parsley or dill for garnish


  1. In a large sauce pan, saute onions, carrots, and celery until onions are translucent.
  2. Add chicken stock, potatoes, tomatoes, and garlic. Bring to a boil.
  3. Add salt, pepper, basil, and thyme.
  4. Reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes or until potatoes are cooked through.
  5. Add green beans and simmer for about 10 more minutes.
  6. Serve hot. Garnish with parsley or dill.

The vision of the Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) is of a thriving co-operative economy, rooted in a healthy, just and sustainable food system and a vibrant community of co-operative enterprise.  Eat healthy and help keep our local farms thriving! Look for our Northeast Grown Frozen Fruits and Vegetables in the freezer section. They’re easy to find because they’re packed in a clear package, so you can see what’s inside!

For more Farm to Freezer information and recipes visit:

Farmers Union: NE Farmer Fly-In

Northeast Family Farmers Join 350 Advocates for ‘Fly-In’ to Washington

Amidst an historic decline in net farm income and added Logo.NEFU.jpgdisruptions in agricultural trade and biofuel markets, 350 family farmers and ranchers traveled to the nation’s capital earlier this month to meet face-to-face with top Trump administration officials and members of Congress as they decide on a number of legislative and regulatory priorities for family farmers and their communities.

“Net farm income has plummeted by nearly 50 percent over the past five years, leaving a majority of family farmers earning negative farm income and many of them in severe financial strain,” said National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson.  “At the same time, farmers are seeing commodity prices drop even further due to an escalating trade war with China and other top trading partners. Important markets are being lost indefinitely, and therefore long-term demand for U.S. farm products. The men and women who feed and fuel our nation need the support of their elected leaders, and that’s why 350 of them took five days out of their busy fall schedules to advocate at our Fly-In.”

NFU Fly-In participants traveled to Washington to push for passage of a Farm Bill that supports family agriculture, strong protections from international trade market disruptions, and expansion of the American grown biofuel market.

A delegation from the New England Farmers Union (NEFU) ensured that producers from our region were represented. “Family Farmers and consumers in the Northeast have unique concerns with the Farm Bill,” said Roger Noonan, NEFU President and an organic farmer in New Hampshire. “And it is important to ensure that our voice is heard on issues such as working lands conservation, risk management tools that work for a diverse agriculture, and programs that address the needs of the hungry.” Other NEFU representatives included organic dairy farmer Eric Shaffer of Scheffer’s Grassland Dairy in Hoosick Falls, NY, Carl Shartz of Ten Apple Farm, a diversified family operation in Gray, ME, and organic dairy farmer Mary Castonguay of Castonguay Ayershires of Livermore, ME, which is a member of the Organic Valley co-operative.

The three-day event began with a briefing at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). NFU members heard from USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue, USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Gregory Ibach, USDA Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett, and U.S Trade Representative Chief Agriculture Negotiator Gregg Doud.

The event continued with an address by U.S. Senators and Representatives in a Farm Bill Forum. NFU members then took to Capitol Hill to meet in small-group meetings with all 535 congressional offices, and to present congressional champions of family agriculture with the Golden Triangle Award, the group’s highest legislative honor. Recipients of the award from the Northeast included U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, NY, U.S. Representative Ann Kuster, NH, and U.S. Representative Chellie Pingree, ME.

*       *       *       *

The New England Farmers Union Needs You!

If you care about where your food comes from and want to support the people who produce it, consider joining NEFU as a Friend of the Farmer for just $15. Your membership will help ensure that our region’s producers and consumers are heard by policy makers here at home and in Washington, DC. For more information, please visit

The Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) is an affiliate member of the New England Farmers Union (NEFU), representing our commitment to collaboration among consumers and our region’s family farmers and fishermen to influence food system policy and build a more vibrant, resilient and co-operative food system in the Northeast.

Upcoming Events

Neighborhood Co-op Calendar

For More Co-op & Food System Related Events visit:



Oct 3-5, 2018

NCBA CLUSA Co-op Impact Conference

Washington, DC


Oct 6, 2018

NCBA CLUSA Co-op Festival

Washington, DC


Oct 13, 2018

CDS Consulting Co-op’s “Co-op Cafe” (Co-Hosted by NFCA)

Keene, NH


Nov 1-3rd, 2018

Co-operative Business Training with Saint Mary’s University (For Staff & Board Members)

NFCA Member Co-ops Receive a Discount in Registration.

Greenfield Community College, Greenfield, MA


March 23, 2019

Neighboring Food Co-op Association 8th Annual Meeting

For NFCA Member Co-ops and Partner Organizations


The Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA) is a co-operative federation of 35 food co-ops and start-up initiatives across New England, working together toward a shared vision of a thriving co-operative economy, rooted in a healthy, just, and sustainable food system and a vibrant community of  co-operative enterprise.