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You May Be Wondering...


Hmmmm, what's that big quilt hanging in the window of the Creamery Co-op? That quilt is living history! We're honored that this traveling quilt has been sent to us for display at our Co-op by Cooperative Development Services (CDS), which sends the quilt to start-up co-ops to help them celebrate their first year of operations. We'll have the quilt for a month, and then it will travel on to the next start-up co-op.


The original Bowers Quilt, and the subsequent quilts that followed, were created to be auctioned off at the annual Consumer Co-op Managers (CCMA) conference to raise money for the Howard Bowers Fund. Co-ops that win a quilt auction have the privilege of displaying that quilt throughout the year until the next CCMA conference, where it is returned to be re-auctioned. There are now five quilts in circulation, and since the first quilt was made in 1999, the quilts have raised at total of $224,917 (through June 2012).


The Howard Bowers Fund for Consumer Cooperatives was established by the Hyde Park Consumer Society in memory of its long-time general manager, Howard Bowers. The fund's purposes are to promote and develop consumer-owned food cooperatives and consumer cooperative education, to encourage and train people to pursue careers in the management of consumer-owned food cooperatives, and to provide education programs for staff, board, and managers of consumer cooperatives.


To read more about fund and for an article about how the original quilt was sewn, please click here.



Wine Tasting at the Creamery

What are you doing on a summer's Friday evening in Cummington? Why, coming to a wine tasting at the Creamery of course! Come join us Friday, August 9, from 4 to 7 p.m. along with Greg Meserole, Arorway Imports' certified sommelier, as we explore six delicious wines from France and Italy. Sip a little, learn a little, and have fun with your neighbors! Special discounts from 4 to 6 p.m.: 10% off six bottles, mix and match, your choice, and 15% off a preordered full case of the wines we're tasting.



Cheese of the Week!

This Saturday we're featuring Ben Nevis as our tasting cheese. Ben Nevis is a raw sheep's milk Bonnieview Farm cheese made at Bonnieview Farm in Vermont's Northeast Kingdom. It's a rustic, nutty tomme with a semihard texture. The flavor, while sweet, has a lovely and lingering piquant bite.


This cheese is delicious. Peter says he could eat it all day! It's perfect for a sandwich or for your cheeseboard. Come in this Saturday and try it. You won't be disappointed. Remember, we'll take 10% off the regular price all day. Thanks, and hope to see you this weekend!



Guthrie and Irion at the Creamery!

Don't forget! Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion will kick off their tour in support of their brand-new recording, Wassaic Way, at the Creamery Co-op on Tuesday, August 6, at 11 a.m. We are delighted to announce that they chose to honor the Creamery with a free performance on the record's release date! Come celebrate with us!



Guest Column on GMOs and the American Chestnut 

As a biologist and GMO educator, I read the Co-op newsletter article "To Preserve a Memory: The (Transgenic) American Chestnut" with great interest. The provocative question at the end of the article -- "if science can bring a useful, traditional tree back from extinction for the public good rather than greed, does it matter that genetic engineering is responsible?" -- prompted me to provide some additional perspective to readers. The transgenic act of playing God (Nature) and crossing the species barrier by taking genetic material from one unrelated species, in this case wheat, and forcing it into another unrelated species, chestnut trees, is, in my opinion, at the very least irresponsible. This could never happen naturally and is consequently totally unnatural.


The Co-op newsletter article reports that the chestnut research is being conducted by a "seemingly benign researcher" (William Powell) and is a project of SUNY's College of Environmental Science and Forestry, but let's follow the funding. In science, we have a saying: the findings follow the funding. This adage applies to the research being conducted on the American chestnut.


Monsanto is a major funder ( of the chestnut restoration project mentioned in the article and helps fund William Powell's research. Buying influence is not cheap, but Monsanto is willing to spend the money. It's bad enough that big biotech wants to control our food supply; now it wants to control our forests.


It was mentioned in the article that this project appears not to be motivated by greed. Monsanto's stockholders would be very disappointed in their company if large profits were not the motiving factor driving Monsanto's business decisions. Will these transgenic trees and the engineering process used to create them be patented as genetically engineered crops and seeds are? I don't know for sure, but if the history of the Monsanto Company holds true, patents and the fees associated with using its patented plants and seeds will be an essential part of its business plan.


The newsletter article mentioned that wildlife might benefit (I presume from eating the seeds). Recently published research showing the severely irritated stomachs of pigs that ate GMO feed as compared with pigs that ate non-GMO feed leads me to ask for much more research on the effects of wildlife eating transgenic chestnut seeds before these trees are released to our forests. We cannot forget that a transgenic chestnut is not an American chestnut. It is a different tree, with different genetics, that will produce different seeds (nuts) than our native trees.


Transgenic chestnuts will not become part of the New England landscape anytime soon. To reestablish this icon as a natural component of a diversified forest will be logistically very difficult and take many decades, if not longer. At best they will be planted as ornamentals or possibly plantation monoculture islands within mixed forest communities.

I would love to see this great American forest icon return to the eastern US, but creating genetically new trees through genetic engineering is not the responsible way to pull this plant back from the brink of extinction. When offered GMO chestnuts roasted on an open fire, I think I'll pass.


-- Ed Stockman, Creamery Co-op member and cofounder of MA Right to Know GMOs


Stay in Touch! We Love to Hear from You!

For questions about Co-op membership, product requests, or suggestions or other feedback, please send a note to We'll make sure your note is sent to the appropriate person and that you get a prompt response.


If you'd like to contact the Co-op's board of directors, simply send your email to Emails sent to this address are received only by the board.


To reach Karen Doherty, the Co-op's general manager, send an email to Emails sent to this address are received only by Karen.


If you're thinking of becoming a valued volunteer of the Co-op, you can reach Shirley Todd, volunteer coordinator, at There are many opportunities for volunteers. Emails sent to this address go directly to Shirley.


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 (for best results, use the "Forward email" link in the white space at the bottom of this page). 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.



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445 Berkshire Trail

Cummington, Massachusetts 01026