Monthly archives "October 2007"

Organics for all

One of our aims is to make organic food affordable for all. Everyone should be eating healthy, organic food, not just those who can afford it. I’ve discussed in previous newsletters that organics need not be more expensive – the yields can be as good, or better, than chemically-grown food.

We know that some of our items are great value, and some, unfortunately, are not.

Which is why we’re very pleased to be offering our own range of products, bought in bulk, packaged in biodegradable packaging, and offered to you at, we believe, exceptional prices. We can keep prices down by being online, and not having all the expenses associated with a shop, by being small, and a co-operative, so we don’t have multiple levels of management taking their cut. It may also surprise you to know we only have one fulltime staff member, a very recent appointment.

Enjoy 500g basmati rice for R12, 500g sunflower seeds for R17 and 500g white sugar for R9. There are also a few other items at great prices, but you’ll have to be quick to nab those. Don’t forget to toss the packaging, made from starch, in the compost bin once you’ve finished, rather keeping your dustbin free to gather the dust it’s named after.

We’ll be expanding the range over the coming weeks.

If you’ve moved away from sugar to healthier options (even organic white sugar isn’t good for you!), we can offer xylitol, which is safe for diabetics, and much healthier, as well as honey (from Honeywood and Bloublommetjies farms), and dates.

To order, visit

The Co-op team.

Carrots and sardines

Welcome to all our new members who signed up at the Natural and Organics Exhibition. It was good to see some of our existing members too, even if at times it seemed as if we were in a sardine tin.

Hopefully next year we can afford a bigger stand, and be able to show more than the small portion of our range we could squeeze in this year.

The winner of our Natural and Organics competition is Cornelia Vos – your voucher should be appearing on your account shortly.

Carrots are one of those veggies that never get much attention. They don’t come from the Himalayas, we’ve all known about them since childhood, and they’re rarely the subject of much marketing since they’re commonly available, and grown right here in Cape Town.

But the humble carrot is exceedingly good for us, and those stories about it being good for our eyes are true. Lack of Vitamin A is a cause of poor vision. A carrot’s distinctive orange colour comes from beta-carotene, which converts to Vitamin A in the body. This forms a pigment called rhodopsin, which the eye uses to see in dim light. Carrots are high in antioxidants generally, and help prevent cancers.

I’ve even heard of them being used to help give up smoking – apparently chewing on a carrot everytime a craving arises does the trick!

Orange carrots developed in the 15th and 16th centuries in the Netherlands, and became popular as a nationalistic celebration of the ruling House of Orange. Before that, purple, pink, red and yellow carrots were more common.

On a final note, especially for our new members, please return what we can re-use. We pay Talents for your Camphill bottles, and will take egg boxes, cardboard boxes, netting and glass bottles back.

To order, head on over to
The Co-op team.

Spring and the Natural and Organics Exhibition

It’s been a fine spring day, and the first day I’ve felt I can wander around at night without a jersey. The spring fruit and veg is making an appearance, and what better way to celebrate this weekend than at the Natural and Organics Exhibition, at the Convention Centre. We’ll be online too, so you can place your orders right there, or buy from the limited stock we’ll have on offer at the show.

We had our record number of orders, by some margin, so we weren’t able to supply as many of you with the complementary tickets as we’d have liked, but we’d love to meet any of you who are attending, face-to-face for a change. Our stall is near the stage, opposite the wine-tasting area, or on the opposite side of the hall from the main entrance.

Apologies that so many of you had products short this week, especially eggs. Apparently, the hens weren’t in the mood for laying thanks to last week’s cold snap. We hope, for the hen’s sake of course, that the spring weather lasts.

Last week, perhaps because of the exhibition ticket offering, we had a lot more orders on Friday than usual. Usually, most of our orders come in on Monday. Do remember that there is often significantly more stock available on Fridays. Some of the products, such as the Camphill Milk and Camphill Bread, are ordered from their dairy and bakery on Sunday, or even Saturday. We don’t like wastage, so we usually make a very conservative estimate on what to make available after that. All of which means some of your favourite products may be unavailable if you place your order on Monday.

Remember that you can always place an initial order on Friday, making sure you get your hands on those products in short supply, and then update your order on Monday. Your order is only frozen on Monday at 2pm – you can change it at will, depending on availability, until then.

To order, head on over to

Hope to see you at the Convention Centre,

the Co-op team.

Natural and Organics Exhibition, and some more good news

The Natural and Organic Exhibition will be running from the 12th to the 14th October at the Convention Centre. The co-op will be there, as will some of our suppliers, and it promises to be a great event. We’d love you to join us, so we’ve managed to source some complementary tickets. We’ll be handing them out on a first-come, first-served basis, but we only have enough for about half of our normal weekly orders. So, if you order early, we’ll put a ticket in your box.

If you don’t want one, please say so in the notes with your order, and allow someone who is keen to take your place.

New on the site this week we have oat milk, which can be used as a milk replacement for those who prefer to avoid dairy.

Remember the outcry after the local case last year when Kelloggs was forced to stop misleading customers into believing its products were ‘healthy’. Now, in response to a lawsuit in the US, Kelloggs is actually improving the nutritional content of some of its products. In an agreement with various children’s health groups, who were suing Kelloggs, the company has agreed that all of its products that are advertised to young children will meet certain standards (mainly reduced salt and sugar content). Currently half of them fail to meet these standards.

The growth in people’s awareness, and the resultant pressure being placed on big companies, is heartening to see. Understanding one’s body, and understanding the effects of what we feed it, should be a fundamental skill, like literacy. We’re getting there.

To order, go to

The Co-op team