New Logo


We Are Part of Something Big!


On January 26, three of us (Patty Kimura, Kimberly Longey, and Hattie Plehn) attended a daylong training session for co-op board members and managers offered by the Cooperative Development Service Consulting Co-op. We joined 75 other individuals, who serve 26 co-ops, from 9 states, with more than 80,000 member-owners!


We learned about governance best practices and how to keep our eyes on the future while measuring past performance. We studied how to interpret financial statements and effectively monitor the financial condition of a co-op. We explored the concepts of team-building, appreciative questioning, stewardship, and strategic leadership. And we discovered that nearly all of the participating co-ops are undergoing positive pressure to grow--whether by increasing space or diversity of product offerings; by adding a second (or third) store within their community; or by investing in a related enterprise such as a production facility.


The Old Creamery Co-op is part of a large and growing movement. Several other start-ups were present at the training. Every day, co-ops are demonstrating that by bringing economic resources under democratic control, they can transform communities, nations, and people. Together, co-ops of all sizes are building sustainable, long-lasting, and successful enterprises that contribute to economic and social security.


Though the training took a day out of our busy lives, the opportunity to share experiences and to learn from others who have gone before us was very, very worthwhile. We came away excited, inspired, and hopeful about the future of our beloved Old Creamery as a co-op. What fun!


Patty, Kimberly, and Hattie


P.S. The workshop was in Brattleboro, and afterward we stopped by the Brattleboro Food Co-op, founded in 1975 and now owned by 6,000 shareholders. Wow! Check out their new location next time you are headed north.   


From Karen, Our General Manager:

Wow, am I excited! As part of my job as your general manager, I get to scout the perimeters near and far for foods I think you'll love, and do I have a good one for you! Here's how it all unfolded: on a recent trip to New York City, I visited beloved Russ & Daughters on the Lower East Side, well known as "the city's best and most character-rich smoked-fish experts," according to memoirist and owner of Prune restaurant Gabrielle Hamilton. There I spied on the counter the richest, darkest densest looking loaf of rye I have ever laid eyes on. "Okay, throw in that loaf of bread too!" I said to the Lox Sherpa. Lox Sherpa? Yes! Read all about his heroic efforts after Hurricane Sandy by clicking here


But back to the bread. Oh the bread! Back home in cozy Cummington, I unwrapped my lox, my Black Rooster logo hand-pickled herring, my smoked sable...and my loaf of Black Rooster Baltic Rye. Just one bite and I was hooked. The flavor was amazing: sweetly sour, perfectly complementing the herring...heaven. We will receive our first shipment within days, so be on the lookout!


What's to love? Ruth Reichl, editor-in-chief of Gourmet magazine, said it well: "This is powerful stuff that reminds you of why bread is called 'the staff of life.' I am pretty sure you could live on it alone." The bread is handmade in Brooklyn using 100% rye flour and a sourdough fermentation process. The only other ingredients are rye malt, caraway seeds, yeast, salt, and a tad of sugar to promote fermentation. It stays fresh for a long Black Rooster Rye time and freezes well. It perfectly complements hearty soups, various cheeses, smoked salmon, sausage, and of course...herring! (By the way, look for delicious Duck Trap brand Herring in Cream Sauce and Herring in Wine Sauce in our cooler.)


And!! We'll also be carrying the Baltic Rye with Fruit and Nuts, which I'm sure you'll be equally nuts about. This bread makes a hearty breakfast when spread with cream cheese, cottage cheese, or butter, and is really high in fiber. It keeps for weeks, so enjoy, enjoy!


You can read all about the story of this Latvian-style rye bread at the Black Rooster website: click here


See you at the Co-op!



What's on Your Plate?

Here's a link to an illustrated video on the challenges of the dominant food system, and alternatives for creating healthy people and a healthy planet. The video was commissioned by the University of Vermont. It's really worth the 11 minutes. Really! Click here to view the video.



Overheard at the Creamery:

"What a fantastic store! I want to eat everything!"



Cheese of the Week!

Berkshire Blue This week's sampling cheese is Berkshire Blue, a gold medal winner at the sixteenth world cheese awards. Berkshire Blue is made in Berkshire County, Massachusetts, from whole, unpasteurized Jersey cow milk. This is a great middle-of-the-road blue with a creamy texture and modestly bold flavor profile that make blue lovers smile. This Stilton-style cheese makes feeling blue a whole lot better!


Come down this Saturday and have a taste. You won't be disappointed! Remember, we'll take 10% off the regular price all day! Hope to see you this weekend!


Recipe: Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

This week's recipe comes from Co-op member-owner and volunteer coordinator Shirley Todd.


I remember tomato soup from my childhood, with grilled cheese sandwiches...yummy.


This recipe is heartier and better. Gather together 1 cup each minced carrot, celery, onion, or any other vegetables you prefer; 2 tablespoons olive oil; 4 cups vegetable broth; 15 ounces of tomato purée; 2 cups ditalini pasta; salt and pepper; and 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese.


In a large pot, cook the vegetables in olive oil until just tender. Add broth and tomato and bring to a boil. Add pasta, cook to al dente, and season with salt and pepper. Serve with parmesan cheese. Serves six.


Try grilled cheese sandwiches with whole grain bread and olive oil instead of butter. Add thinly sliced apples and/or baby arugula or spinach to the cheese before grilling.


What's your favorite recipe? Submit a recipe and a little story and we may share it right here in the Recipes section. Just send it to 



A Reminder: What's Next on February 10

Please join our Co-op's Board of Directors and general manager on Sunday, February 10, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Cummington Community House to learn about "what's up and what's next." Light refreshments will be served. There's no need to let us know in advance that you are coming, but do come, and please bring a friend. This meeting is open to all. Childcare will be provided, so bring the whole family. (If you plan to use the childcare services, please send an email to to let us know the number and ages of your children. Thanks!)


The Cummington Community House is located at 33 Main Street, Cummington center, just off Route 9.  



What's in Your Garden?

The Old Creamery's Community Calendar is your place to post, and check for, happenings in the Hilltowns. 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. For instance, click here to see the listing for "A Garden Variety Forum" this Sunday in Cummington.


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 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. We work hard to find bargains on many different items, including staple groceries, treats like chocolate, juices, refrigerated items, personal care products, and supplements. The shelf tags indicate when the sale price expires. Some sale items are one-time opportunities that remain on sale until sold out. Many are purchasing opportunities that can be replenished over several weeks at great prices. Enjoy the savings!

Your continued patronage supports the ongoing success of our 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.



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