Customer Comments 5/31/19

Grocery

Customer Question: I need 4-6 cup coffee filters (basket)…can we carry?
Co-op Answer: Thank you for your input! We currently carry a #2, #4 and #6 coffee filter from If You Care, as well as the one basket size/ Unfortunately, this is the only basket size filter they currently make and the only size our distributor has available from this brand and other brands they work with. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Truckload sale – Alden’s Choco-choco chip please!
A: Thank you for your input! Unfortunately, this flavor does not sell well enough to justify buying in large quantities for the truckload sales. However, it will regularly be on sale this summer! -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: What’s happened to all the bread?
A: Thank you for your input! Due to regular customer and employee feedback on the difficulty of navigating our bakery section, we made the decision to reset this section. We did lose a significant amount of shelf space,but returned all of our vendors, who returned almost all of their flavors and options. If there are any specific breads you are looking for, please let us know! -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Please start to carry Sami’s Lavash. It is amazing! and I drive over an hour to get it!
A: Thank you for your input! We try very hard to carry local bakery products whenever possible, so it is unlikely we will bring in Sami’s as they are from Florida. We are looking at bringing in a Vermont made Lavash as soon as we can find space. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: As someone who is allergic to dairy, I loved the soy whipped cream! So good! However, the new rice whip is not so good. It’s kind of gross. Having only one dairy free option is a bummer, please consider going back to soy! Please, please please! Thanks.
A: Thank you for your input! Unfortunately, Soyatoo soy whipped cream is no longer available to us due to issues with soy resources. We will happily bring them back in if they return to distribution. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Will you bring in a couple of flavors of Macro Bars? Thanks for considering!
A: Thank you for your input! Currently, our bar set is completely full. However, the next time we do a category review for this set, we will certainly consider adding this brand in. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Why can’t you have a selection (or at least one brand) of gluten free bread that does not have eggs or vegan. There is “Bake Shop” and other companies, not Udi! Rice bread is dry. There are others that are nutritious with soft texture of gluten wheat bread. Call me and I can tell you other brands I have written down at home.
A: Thank you for your input! We will certainly look for a good brand to add to our set. I believe Northern Bakehouse is vegan and gluten free and is doing well in different stores. We will need to drop some items to bring a new brand, but we will work on it this month. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Just curious – what happened to mochi (Eden)? What became of Nectar Pies?
A: Thank you for your input! The Eden Mochi was actually a shelf stable item which is now in our international aisle. I’m not entirely sure what the Nectar Pies are. Did they go by any other name? -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Can you carry in the jar? I have to get it online.
A: Thank you for your input! We currently carry Nacciolata brand chocolate hazelnut spread which is actually less expensive than Justin’s would be and comes in a glass jar, so we are unlikely to bring in Justin’s at this time. You may special order this product and receive a case discount. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Can you please carry Nutty Steph’s chocolate vulvae? They’re the best and support a good cause. Thanks for considering.
A: Thank you for your input! There are a wonderful, fun product that supports a great cause – I stock up whenever I am in Middlesex! However, I don’t believe they are a good fit for our store as we serve our entire community – so whatever my personal opinion may, I try to be aware of the sensitivities of everyone. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Q: Fat free vanilla and maple Butterworks yogurt. Lowfat granola.
A: Thank you for your input! Our yogurt set is very full now and we would not me able to add new large containers without dropping another flavor. As fat free yogurts are some of our slowest sellers currently, we are unlikely to add new nonfat flavors. I’m not entirely sure what fat percentage would constitute low a “low fat” for granola, but Purely Elizabeth, Back Roads, and Butterfly Bakery have lower fat options. -Olivia, Grocery Buyer

Food Services

Q: You must try oat milk for lattes! It’s way better than almond, soy or hemp as a lactose free alternative! It foams and is creamy but there is no aftertaste that hemp and almond and soy have. I was told at deli that there is no room for anymore milk alternatives bu this is so amazing you could replace the others – it has caught on in Europe where I first had it and now on the East and West Coasts.
A: We don’t pick the milk alternatives based on foaminess but on what our customers have asked for. And then, eventually, what we can fit and go through before it goes bad. Basic supply and demand. I’m willing to give it a try and see if we can go through it quick enough but at one point we struggle with stocking too many one offs. -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

Q: Waited at deli – no one came, no one faced me or looked up. Horrible customer service.
A: You are absolutely correct – this is not acceptable and I thank you for bringing this to our attention as it will only serve to make us better with training. -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

Q: At the salad bar the green lettuce has been consistently quite good. However, today it was pretty rough (May 17).
A: Thanks for the feedback. -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

Q: Please more veggie food in the hot bar! It seems like you have 3 meat trays and the veg people have to eat sides. Thanks.
A: Will do! Please stop by and offer suggestions – they are always welcome. -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

Q: I’d love to see fresh-made smoothies and juice to order in the deli.
A: If it made economic sense to have a separately staffed smoothie bar we would do it. As it stands now our deli staff are already tasked with many services that can keep them from serving all effectively. -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

Q: Think up what’s next. Everyone has to hold the same dressing bottles. Not all dressings pour equally.
A: I don’t fully understand the everyone touching the bottle issue as everyone touches all the serving utensils for everything? We have adjusted the recipes to allow them to pour easily. -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

Q: Please please replace the tahini dispenser.
A: We have adjusted the recipe to allow it to pour more readily. -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

Q: Sprouts at the salad bar. Real salt at the cafe.
A: Sprouts are an item that are particularly prone to bacteria growth and thus foodborne illness so it is not something we will be offering in that kind of an environment. I am sorry to disappoint you though. As for real salt – what do you mean? The brand or a more substantial sea/kosher salt? -Doug, Prepared Foods Manager

General

Q: I am a long time-customer and former member. Over the years there is something missing at Hunger Mountain – music! A cherished part of food and local culture that can bring people together and lighten the mood – please bring back music to Hunger Mountain Co-op! Local instrumentalist in the cafe one day per week and music for store. For everyone person that isn’t a fan of a pleasant song, there are a 100+ who are. Thank you.
A: Live music seems like a good idea here but given space and acoustics its been challenging. We are open to trying again though. We will give it some thought and see what might work. -Kari, General Manager

Q: Comment on the comment re: the large poster at the front. It’s also offensive on the level of diversity and inclusiveness. Original comment likens selling “community” with selling cars with sex.
A: Thank you for the feedback. I don’t share your perspective but I do appreciate that you do and that you are willing to communicate it to us. -Kari, General Manager

Q: In the quest to get rid of single use plastic bags can we ditch the plastic spice bags? The wax paper works just fine.
A: I appreciate that but I don’t think most customers consider wax a suitable replacement, especially for more powdery spices. Reusable containers like jars (or plastic bags) are preferred. -Kari, General Manager

Q: It’s spring! Let’s figure out a way to respect/enforce VT’s no idling law in the HMC parking lot. Seems like a lot of people hanging out in running cars doing things like eating and checking their phones. Maybe big eye catching signs? Happy to help figure this out. Seems particularly supportive of the HMC mission and would help a lot at busy times when parking is precious.
A: Good idea. We can put our no idling sign back out and I will ask the managers on duty to address it when they observe. Idling tends to be a bigger issue in winter and pets in cars more in summer. -Kari, General Manager

Q: It’s been so nice lately, everyone has been pleasant and helpful. Must have had a meeting about being nice.
A: That’s great to hear. Thank you. -Kari, General Manager

Q: Please change out your “stop” sign in parking lot to reflect VT law “yield” as seen on all other signs in Montpelier and VT.
A: We recognize this is important to you. We do plan to replace that sign soon. -Kari, General Manager

Q: Since plastic recyclables are not longer being recycling due to China stopping processing and only 10% of plastic is recycled worldwide, the rest is burned. Can the coop research a different packaging for prepared foods?
A: Thank you. We do have a HMC Green Team and a task force from food Co-ops nationally researching alternatives. We eliminated plastic flatware and straws this year. I hope we are able to take additional steps soon. -Kari, General Manager