Hooray, it’s Bountiful Baskets time again! If you have BB in your area, look into it! If you don’t, you’re missing out! A simple way to describe BB is that it’s a co-op or CSA without the up-front investment or long term commitment. Here’s how Sally and Tanya, the heads of BB, describe it:
We hope you enjoyed your experience with Bountiful Baskets Food Co-op (BBFC). BBFC distributes produce baskets, organic produce baskets, artisan bread and sandwich bread every other week.BBFC is a group of people who work together for mutual benefit. This is a grassroots, all volunteer, no contracts, no catch co-operative. Since there are no employees at Bountiful Baskets, we as a group pay rock bottom prices on your food. This also means the co-op would not happen without volunteers. If you are interested in the co-op continuing, please volunteer occasionally. All it takes is a little time, energy and a smile. Volunteer opportunities include helping prepare the baskets, breaking down boxes, assisting with the distribution, and packing up. To help out, simply arrive an hour early dressed and ready to work with water to drink.
One last little thing… To quote a press release that a local City put out to encourage residents to consider participating, “Bountiful Baskets Food Co-op is a participatory experience. Participants all save a substantial amount of money on healthy food. In exchange there are no employees to guide participants through the experience.” Please read the contents of the FAQ and Policies before emailing us. All the information necessary to participate is available on the website.
See you at Co-op!
Sally & Tanya and The Whole Bountiful Baskets Team
Your basic basket is $15. There is a $3 first timer’s fee the first time you contribute, and there is a $1.50 handling fee per contribution. You can get up to 3 baskets at a time. Organic baskets are available for a $10 upcharge per basket. One of the neatest things about BB, I think, is the add-ons! Every week, 5-packs of bread are available – usually a variety pack, a single-flavor pack, and sometimes a sourdough pack. They also offer produce by the case, such as peaches, corn, mangos, pineapple, tomatoes, and on and on. Occasionally, you’ll even see an olive oil or coconut oil add-on. And then there’s the variety packs! This past week, BB offered a lunch box pack – apples, pears, and the like – and a stew pack – potatoes, onions, carrots, and savory spices.
My town is an A week town. BB runs on an A/B week schedule. Some towns are A weekers, some are B weekers, and some lucky sods are both weeks. Wyoming opens up at 9 am Mountain time, and I’m careful to log on by 9:30, since the three sites here in town “sell out” quickly! There are only so many baskets available at each site – not an infinite quantity. When it’s 9 am on an A week Monday here in Laramie, Wyoming, according to the BB schedule, I’ll go to the BB web site and click on the “Participate Now” link at the top of the page, then click on “Get my basket” under the Wyoming designation. Next, I’ll log in to my account. Word of advice – make sure your account is set up before you contribute for the first time, so you don’t waste time choosing your items and risk not actually getting what you want! After I’ve logged in, I’ll choose my county, then the location where I want to pick up. Now, I’ll choose how many baskets I want, if I want to upgrade those to organic baskets, if I want any add-ons, then I click Submit. On the next screen, I’ll review my cart and confirm my total, which includes the $1.50 handling fee. Next, I’ll enter my card details (BB doesn’t store this information for you). Once that goes through, I’ll get a confirmation number. I *HAVE* to bring my confirmation – either printed from my contribution history or from the confirmation email, or I can show it on my phone – to pick up my goodies that following Saturday. Some of the easiest grocery shopping I’ve ever done!
I’ve already dehydrated the bananas. We’re grilling out tonight, and we’ll eat the broccoli, zucchini, lettuce, corn, and some potatoes then. I’ll freeze the Hatch chiles. I’m going to try making jam with the Asian pears, and will experiment with drying more of the potatoes. The peppers will be mixed with some onions I bought and canned for later use with tacos. The canteloupe has been my breakfast the last couple days. I need to get some ziploc baggies so I can double bag the loaves of bread and put them in the freezer.