I’m about to move, and I just worked my last shift at the Park Slope Food Coop in Brooklyn, the largest member-owned and operated co-op in the country. I almost cried. Yes, I really love the Coop. I think I actually took notes at the orientation when I first became a member. It was created by the community to bring healthy and affordable food to everyone who wanted it, and it was a movement that I was eager to be a part of. Besides always appreciating the lower prices for organic food, the squad I worked with became my modern-day sewing circle, as the women on my team and I met monthly, to work and share stories of our families and what’s going on in the neighborhood. I’ll miss the Coop, but I’ve got a great resource: Sustainable Table.
Sustainable Table is a program of non-profit GRACE, an advocate for economically and environmentally sound alternatives to practices that are harmful to the ecosystem and public health. The organization’s awareness campaigns included creation of the award-winning Meatrix films, and work in water conservation and energy alternatives.
The Sustainable Table site is an incredible resource to eating healthfully and mindfully. Read up on issues like: additives, air pollution, animal welfare, antibiotics (and that only gets me through the A’s, check out the alphabetized list of issues here). Shopping guides include printable wallet sized lists of what to look for and avoid, plus they even have rBGH-free dairy map that you can download to your iPod or Blackberry!
Sister site the Eat Well Guide helps you to find CSA’s, farmers markets, restaurants and other sustainable food choices searchable by city/state, zip or keyword.
While I’m looking forward to trying a new region’s local food after I move, for now I’m actually in a café across from the Coop, and feel the need to run over there right now for some good food. And for a moment of appreciation for my community, 12,000+ members and I always run into someone I know!