Old Creamery Co-op


This Co-op Is Your Co-op

Last Saturday marked the 100th anniversary of Woody Guthrie's birth. It's only fitting that his granddaughter, Sarah Lee Guthrie, met at the Old Creamery with Woody Guthrie Valley Advocate Managing Editor Mark Roessler to talk about her granddad and her family's celebratory gig at last weekend's Green River Festival. Why? Well, it's about halfway between Sarah Lee's Berkshire County home and the Advocate's Northampton offices. But, hey, that's just geography.


More important, of course, is that the Old Creamery Co-op is dedicated to principles shared by grandfather and granddaughter: democracy on a local scale, with one person, one vote; a business set up to meet the interests of its owners, owners who are its customers, and where each owner is equal.


Just guessin', but we think Woody would approve; heck, he'd most likely be playin' his heart and soul out to support the Creamery Co-op and its principles. In a review of Will Kaufman's 2011 book Woody Guthrie, American Radical, Scott Borchert writes, "Kaufman argues [that] the folksinger was not driven by some abstract commitment to justice alone, but by the vision of a cooperative planned economy, one that could meet people's needs directly and foster meaningful social, economic, and racial equality. He . . . insisted that 'I never sing nor play one single word or note that is not for the help of the working classes to know more, feel better, rise up, and to own and control this world that they have built.'"


In the Advocate piece, Sarah Lee says, "For me, I find it hard writing about politics because I don't feel like I understand the truth. If we can make some headway into understanding who's paying off who, we might finally understand what's going on. . . . If you want something done, and you want things to change, the only way it's going to happen is you and me. That's kind of the politics I believe in, because I don't really know anything beyond my local community. I mean, I can come here and buy my vegetables. I know the politics of the Creamery, and that makes me very happy--nobody's paying anyone off here. Monsanto's not involved."


Yes, indeed. Politics are local in the Old Creamery Co-op community, where dollars are retained in the community, local growers are supported, and people know where their food comes from. Please, consider joining your neighbors and friends by becoming a founding member-owner of the Old Creamery Cooperative. Click here for more information.  



Support the Co-op at a Public Hearing Thursday

Continuing with the theme of local politics, you can show your support for the Old Creamery Co-op by attending a Town of Cummington public hearing Thursday evening, July 19. The hearing will consider the application to transfer the Creamery's liquor license to the Co-op. Cummington residents will be able to express their opinions on the request. The license transfer must be approved by the Town of Cummington and then the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission in Boston before the Co-op can proceed with the purchase of the business. This public hearing is an important part of that process. Attendees are asked to arrive at the Cummington Community House at 7:20 p.m.

Cheese of the Week (Take Two!)

Pirates on the high seas intercepted last week's cheese shipment, leaving the Creamery high and dry without its featured Saturday sampling cheese. With apologies for its absence (and our cheesy excuse), we once again announce Mahon, from Spain, as our cheese of the week. Mahon is a raw cow's milk cheese from the island of Menorca and is one of the few cow's milk cheeses producedMahon in Spain. Mahon offers a lovely sharpness, and its lemony, salty flavors evoke the rural Mediterranean seascape. Its rind has a hard, crumbly, cheddar-like consistency that darkens as the wheel ages. Mahon is full-flavored and smooth when young and tangy and intense when older, but it is always delicious. It never fails to impress!


Stop in at the Old Creamery and try some this Saturday! As always, our featured Saturday cheese is 10% off during the sampling time. Hope to see you there.



Grow Your Own!

All garden seeds at the Creamery are now on sale for half price. Yes, that's 50% off! Come in now and browse the Creamery's tremendous selection of seeds. This is Seeds on Sale an excellent chance to stock up so you can grow your own.



Speaking of growing your own, remember to pick up a Grow Your Own Mushroom Garden kit the next time you're at the Creamery. These kits provide a fun activity that the entire family will enjoy. Just add water and mist twice a day, and your family will experience the magic of a crop of gourmet oyster mushrooms in just ten days! The soil in the box is 100% coffee grounds recycled from Peet's coffee shops. The kits make great gifts too, and recently won the 2012 "sofi" gold award for best food gift.


Regularly retailing for $27.39, the Grow Your Own Mushroom Garden kit is on sale now at the Creamery for just $19.99. You can find the kit in the refrigerated section at the back of the store; if you don't see one, just ask the cashier.


Alice's Recipe: Pesto and Variations

The drought, deer, and heat have slowed down our garden quite a bit, but the list of chores is still long and the available time is still short. We find ourselves creating quick meals from the garden. Pasta with one of many possible pestos is a standard. We have a great variety of greens in our garden, and we'll make pesto with combinations of basil, arugula, cilantro, mint, chard, spinach, purslane, chickweed, garlic scapes, and parsley. Here is a basic Basil Pesto recipe, along with many ideas for variations. We make a quick salad and a cooked vegetable with whatever the garden has ready. Tonight we'll have stuffed baby pattypan squash, heaps of blanched broccoli sautéed with olive oil and garlic, and a salad with mixed lettuce leaves, anise hyssop, cherry tomatoes, salad turnips, beets, carrots, cucumbers, and a little hard-boiled egg or local cheese for protein. We'll cook up a delicious, nourishing meal in less than a half hour, counting harvest time!
(Click here for a link to the recipe.)

Help Us Deliver 

The Creamery buys fresh produce from the farm stand on Bridge Road in Northampton and could use some help getting this bounty to Cummington. If anyone routinely drives by the farm stand on Saturdays or Sundays between noon and 4 p.m. and then returns to the Hilltowns, please talk to Alice. The Creamery would trade a delivery for some fresh corn or berries (and other trades are possible!). Thank you!

Help Wanted!

The Creamery is seeking a Grocery/Produce Staffer for three days a week, eight to ten hours per day. Click here for a detailed job description.

Following is one of a series of weekly articles in recognition of the United Nations' International Year of Cooperatives. IYOC logo


Cooperative Models, Explained 

Ever wonder how cooperatives work and who actually owns them? This presentation explains the four main cooperative models (worker, consumer, producer, and multi-stakeholder) and gives examples from Stories.coop that exemplify each type of co-op.

It's YOUR Community Calendar, Email, and Website

The Old Creamery's Community Calendar is your place to post, and check for, happenings in the Hilltowns. For instance, click here to see the expanded listing for Bryant Day Celebration in Cummington this Saturday, July 21. The Community Calendar can be found on the Old Creamery's website under "News & Events." You can click on any event in the calendar to pop up an expanded information box.


We'd also love to hear from you with any suggestions, compliments, gripes, or other comments about the Old Creamery Co-op's weekly email and website. You can email them to info@oldcreamery.coop. Thank you for your help!


Help us spread the word! Consider encouraging your friends to sign on to receive the Creamery's weekly email newsletter. Better yet, encourage them to become member owners of the co-op. You can forward this email to your friends and relatives, and rest assured, we won't clog their inboxes and we will respect their privacy. We will not disclose your or their email addresses to anyone else. You can unsubscribe at any time. Thank you for your interest, commitment, and support.  

Many items are on sale every week at the Creamery. Look for the brightly colored shelf tags. These items are 15%-45% off regular prices. Click here for a list of all the items that have recently gone on sale. In addition to the items on the list, there are always many dozens of additional items on sale.

Your continued patronage supports the Creamery's transition to a community-owned, values-based cooperative. Thank you for supporting the Old Creamery Co-op as a member-owner, as a shopper, as a friend. We value every contribution to the success of the Old Creamery Co-op.


Kimberly, Hattie, Michael, Susi, Sylvia, Patty, & Deborah,     

your Old Creamery Co-op Board of Directors;


Alice & Amy, proprietors   


Please pass this message on to your friends  

and encourage them to join our mailing list


Click here if you would like to become a Member-Owner 

    Quick Links

Creamery Specials and Sales                    Bulk Purchase Program  

445 Berkshire Trail

Cummington, Massachusetts 01026