Photo © Hartmut Toepler
Alfalfa House is a not-for-profit cooperative that aims to provide, where possible, minimally packaged and minimally processed, affordable, wholesome, organic food to its members.
Most of what the co-op sells is un-packaged. Shoppers bring their own containers and scoop, pour or ladle out the exact amount they want. Neither you nor the environment pay for unnecessary packaging.
As well, you only buy what you need - the price per kilo is the same whether you buy 5 grams or 5 kilos! The co-op stocks a surprisingly wide range of foods for such a small shop.
As you can see from the list of products, from staples like dried fruit, nuts, seeds, grains, rices, beans, flours, bread, herbs and spices, teas and coffees, cooking oils, to refrigerated goods such as tofu, tempeh and dairy lines, as well as pastas.
We carry macrobiotic goods, sea vegetables, soy and rice milk, juices, and chocolate and carob snacks.
We stock a range of laundry and cleaning products as well as personal care items such as soaps, shampoo and conditioner, toothpaste, eco toothbrushes. We also stock a wide range of in-season organic fresh fruit and vegetables, much of which is Farmer-Direct.
The co-op prefers ethically and environmentally sound products and checks with suppliers to ensure the conditions and methods under which the goods are grown and processed meet those standards. As much as possible we buy goods produced by organic/biodynamic methods and by other co-ops.
We also encourage reuse by returning bulk packaging (such as boxes, drums and crates) to suppliers and we recycle and compost wherever possible, and encourage all members to do the same.
Prices are competitive and any profits are returned to the co-op in the form of better services and more affordable goods. The more involved members are, the cheaper the goods become; and the cheaper the goods are, the more people will shop!
As well, all bookkeeping and accounting processes are freely available for member scrutiny. All members are entitled to a 10% discount every time they shop, although a 25% discount is also available if they choose to volunteer.