Our community extends well beyond the walls of the Co-op. Each month we shine the spotlight on a new group of local partners to help share their stories and celebrate their role in our community.
Our Co-op works with over 500 local vendors and has more than 3,000 local products on our shelves. Last year, nearly 40% of our sales were from local products.
This month we are featuring local vendor Bee's Wrap, founded in 2012 by Vermonter Sarah Kaeck, a mother of three who has been, by turns, an avid gardener, milker of goats, keeper of chickens, and seamstress. Bee’s Wrap started with a question facing many families and home cooks: How could we eliminate plastics in our kitchen in favor of a healthier, more sustainable way to store our food?
What she discovered is a lost tradition made new again. By infusing organic cotton with beeswax, organic jojoba oil, and tree resin, she created a washable, reusable, and compostable alternative to plastic wrap. Read the rest of the story here.
In collaboration with Provisions International, New England Cheesemakers, and the Neighboring Food Co-op Association, we highlight two regional artisanal cheese producers each month.
Cabot Clothbound Cheddar from Cabot Cooperative Creamery in Cabot, VT, aged at the Cellars at Jasper Hill in Greensboro, VT.
In 2003, Cabot Creamery asked Jasper Hill Farm to age a special batch of English-style clothbound cheddar. This was the beginning of a revolutionary partnership. Kempton Family Farm in Peacham, VT was selected as the sole milk source for Clothbound, and Cabot makes this extraordinary cheese the old-world way - one vat at a time.
Once unmolded from their shaping hoops, the infant wheels are individually wrapped with muslin and brushed with lard before they undergo a ten to fourteen month maturation period. The extra care involved in curing a clothbound cheese requires a customized aging environment, with proper temperature, humidity, and airflow. The cheddar vaults at the Cellars at Jasper Hill are majestic and awe-inspiring - Cabot Clothbound is truly a monumental undertaking. A team of affineurs practice a constant cycle of care for Clothbound and the wheels are tested, tasted, and monitored for quality during their entire life cycle.
Cabot Cooperative Clothbound Cheddar is best enjoyed on its own with a slice of crisp new apple or pear. It has all the characteristic texture of an English-style bandaged cheddar; smooth and dense, slightly brittle, with the sweet caramel and milky flavors that set it apart from other clothbound varieties. It is simultaneously sweet, savory, nutty and tangy.
Rupert from Consider Bardwell Farm in Pawlet, VT.
Spanning the rolling hills of Vermont's Champlain Valley and easternmost Washington County, New York, 300-acre Consider Bardwell Farm was the first cheese-making co-op in Vermont, founded in 1864 by Consider Stebbins Bardwell Himself. Today, the farm makes pasture based, raw milk, naturally rinded cheeses from its herd of 125 goats and 40 cows, all under humane standards set by Animal Welfare Approved. This singular Vermont farm represents the best of what local, sustainable agriculture can be: restoring and preserving critical working landscape and producing value added products which create a working rural economy.
Rupert is an aged, raw Jersey cow milk cheese inspired by great Alpine cheeses like Gruyère and Comté. These 25-pound mega-wheels age a minimum of six months, with a sharpness and complexity that gains with time. A long aging cheese like the old town of Rupert, VT, settled in 1761.
These cheeses are on sale during their featured month! Check out the deals here.
Any time you check-out at the Co-op, you can choose to "give change" by rounding up your total to the nearest dollar.
During April, your change will benefit The Nature Conservancy Vermont. For nearly 60 years, TNCVT has been protecting and connecting land, forests, water, wildlife, and people in a changing climate.
Click here to learn more about TNCVT.
The Art in the Café program supports and cultivates the local arts by displaying the work of the members and staff artists in the Co-op's café. Our family-friendly, month-long exhibits create a pleasant dining experience for customers. This month we are featuring Michelle Wallace. Learn more about our featured artist here.
We offer a variety of workshops, events, and vendor demos to delight and inform our shoppers. Stop by the Co-op for our community Earth Day Celebration on Saturday, April 21. We will have kids' activities; a clothing, book, and media swap; discounts for member-owners; and more! Click here to learn more about our Earth Day Celebration. View our calendar for upcoming events here.
Help support the Montpelier Food Pantry every time you shop at Hunger Mountain Co-op just by remembering your reusable bags! For each bag, basket or box that you use at the register, we will donate five cents. In March, those nickels added up to $787.73 for the Montpelier Food Pantry. Since July, Co-op shoppers have helped raise $8,192.30 and have saved 163,846 bags!
Through a recent grant from the Hunger Mountain Cooperative Community Fund, the Montpelier Food Pantry has launched a recipe kit program. Click here to learn more about this program and the great work the food pantry is doing.