Blogs

Celebrating 24 years of Servicing the Edmonton Community

Today marks our 24th years in business. Yup – we opened our doors on September 3rd, 1991.

We have come a long way. We have moved a few times, been on the brink of closure many times, expanded our store and opened a second store with a café.

We are Edmonton’s only locally owned and independent organic/natural* food store. We roast our own Fair Trade Certified Organic coffee, many of our produce items are produced under Fair Trade licenses, most of our chocolates are Fair Trade and Certified organic (these two certifications reduces the calories in our chocolates by 25% Smile ), we participate in lots of community activities, and we are recognized as being a local leader in health, fairness, and advocating for a saner and healthier world.

We got here because of you! Our customers. THANK YOU!

Stay tuned on social media (Facebook and Twitter) for details regarding activities happening on our Sunday Savings Sale Day on September 13th, 2015 to mark our birthday – there will be ice cream.

Thank you! Looking forward to our 25th Anniversary.

BC Apple Season is Here

Spectrum of Apple Flavours

An apple a day keeps the doctors away.”

#WaterOurTreesYEG

It has been a really wonderful summer this year but it has been very dry. Our trees are very thirsty.

Trees are VERY important to the liveability, the ecological integrity and the beauty of our city. They are under stress and we have the capacity to help them out.

We can water the trees in our yards and the trees on our boulevard. Some people resent that they are watering city trees but they are not the city trees – they are our trees. If we help take care of them it will save us tax money, it will increase the resell value of our homes (having a mature healthy tree compared to a new immature tree), and it will help create civic pride. We can save the trees.

The best way to do this is to use a root watering spike. The ones you can buy at most greenhouse/garden centres/hardware stores is like the one in the photograph below (I got mine from Apache Seeds several years ago). This puts the water directly into the ground a couple of feet down.

Watering Tool

SalvagED #3 Pop Up Lunch at Organic Café August 25th, 2015

Organic Café is looking forward to hosting  SalvagED once again at our café for the third time.  Check out the event on Facebook.

 

The goal of these SalvagEd events is to not only offer excellent vegan food but to demonstrate that not all great food need to be made from food that is in perfect condition. It is estimated that 40% of all food grown, processed and bought in Canada is discarded without being eaten. SalvagEd is here to show that delicious and healthy food can be made from items that were destined to the waste stream.

Come and enjoy some great food and support the Alder Food Security Society.

All the people working the kitchen are volunteers and all money raised goes to the Alder Food Society. Organic Café and Earth’s General Store/Organic café donates the space and our staff time to make this happen.

Al Fresco Block Party Update

Al Fresco will bring 104th Street to vibrant life this coming Saturday (August 22nd, 2015) with a pancake breakfast, Farmer’s Market, Food Trucks, extended patios, a beer garden, fundraising and MUSIC

Earth’s General Store will be vegan/vegetarian central being the only spot on the street to offer only vegan food. You can grab a vegan float, fruit kebab, our famous Spouted Green Lentil Hummus with veggies, and/or a couple of hot corn on the cob (Earth Balance butter). We will be extending our out door seating area/patio.

Earth’s General Store has arranged for extra bicycle racks to be installed in the area (thanks to the Edmonton Bicycle Commuters’ for the use of some of their racks). The racks are not being supervised and not overly secure so I suggest you don’t leave your bicycles in the racks over night.  (Check out this short video on how to use the bicycle rack by hanging your bicycle from your seat/saddle). Please consider walking or bicycling to Al Fresco and enjoy the summer weather – Food, bicycles, people/community, music and drinks. Fun times!

Employment Opportunity – One Kitchen Prepper

We are an independent and locally owned community grocery store with a wide selection of Fair Trade Certified and Certified Organic choices. We offer the community information and products that support good health and reduce our individual and collective ecological impact on the planet. At our downtown store location we have a café that produces prepared food from scratch.

Our café specializes in vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options. We do not serve any meat. You should have a knowledge and understanding of these foods and preparations OR at least a willingness and openness to learn about these foods.

We are currently looking for ONE part-Time Kitchen Preppers

Previous Kitchen experience is required

Our kitchen is open to the public so good communication skills, pleasant attitude, customer and quality focused are essential to these positions.

Responsibilities

Al Fresco, City Market, 104th Street and Earth’s General Store Support the Edmonton Food Bank

On Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 104th street will be turning it up several notches by launching their popular block party – “Al Fresco”. Besides it being a fun time it is also a fundraiser for the Edmonton Food Bank.

Many of our neighbours will be offering extended patios (Kelly’s pub, The Burg, Blue Plate Dinner, Black Pearl), deals, collection spots for food bank donations, and an online auction arranged by de Vine Wines and Spirits.  

You can find more details about the Al Fresco Block party at the 4th Street Promenade website or Facebook page. If you would like to participate in the on-line auction check it out at this website. Earth’s General Store will have something interesting on the auction site soon.

The Edmonton Food Bank has a nice page about the event as well. You can donate money directly to the Food Bank on their website.

Organic Cafe at Earth's General Store Downtown

At our downtown store we have an Organic Cafe where we offer a great selection of soups (two daily selections), salads (100-Mile Barley, Kale Pear Hand massaged Kale), sandwiches/wraps (two daily selections with usually a gluten-free option), and our famous Sprouted Green Lentil Hummus.

We make all of items fresh from scratch. If an ingredient is available as organic we use organic ingredient even though the cost might be 4-5 times as much as in organic canola.

All of the fresh food we produce in our kitchen is plant based (Vegan and Vegetarian) as the default. We sometimes have vegetarian options (dairy cheese is sometimes an option). We offer excellent healthy food options for the downtown food community – lunches, snacks and evening meals) from our café.

I believe we are the only food outlet that is using certified organic Non-GMO tortilla wraps. Most outlets use industry standard wraps which quite often has canola oil in them and that ingredient is normally derived from GMO Canola. Our sandwich breads are made by Breadland - a local bakery in Oliver Square.

Several times a week we bake vegan muffins (Saturday, Sunday, and Thursday) which have been thoroughly enjoyed by people (vegans and non-vegans alike) because they are so good.

How to save money on groceries?

Here are a list of some of the strategies that can provide significant food savings to the household:

·         Reduce or eliminate food waste. Shop smarter, smaller and more often. The 2kg bag of cherries you bought from Costco is not a great buy if 20% go bad. It is estimated that the average Canadian household wastes 30-40% of the groceries they purchase. There are Big savings in reducing or eliminating waste. You are the generator and you have control over this.

Comments on Alberta Minimum Wage

This blog post is in response to an article in the Edmonton Journal on June 29th, 2015 (Impact of unprecedented Alberta minimum wage increase disputed). I was not able to post there since my response was too long.

Being a small business owner since 1991 and a business that I believe is more socially based than most I would like to offer my perspective on the Alberta minimum wage.

Over the past ten years I have paid myself an average of about 36-48K a year. It was much less the years before. I also work about 5 thousand hours a year for this salary. I love doing what I do and know I could be making 2 to three times more money working in my trade (which I also love doing) but that would not provide me with the fulfillment that owning my business provides to me, my community/customers and the planet.