Have you heard? A new kind of co-op is up and running in Seattle that caters to urban farmers!
Begun just three years ago by a small handful of Seattlites interested in the intersection of city life and hyper-local food, the mailing list grew quickly, and now has nearly a thousand members. Some have goats, some have sheep, some have rabbits, many have chickens or bees—and nearly everyone gardens. The list is a lively and generous place, with 10-20 messages daily, filled with questions and astonishingly knowledgeable answers (if you ever wanted to know under what circumstances the different varieties of camellia or laurel are edible or poisonous to goats, you’ve come to the right place).
For some of the people on the list, these interests have been lifelong and/or professional; for others, the list is a way to tap into a wide and deep body of knowledge while doing these things for the first time. For all, it’s a welcoming and good-hearted place where people immediately offer up their extra feed if someone’s in a bind when the weather is dreadful. As of October 2011, Seattle Farm Co-op is now a full fledged member owned and run co-op located in the International District! We are 100% volunteer run.
The co-op warehouse, run by member-volunteers, is open a couple times a week usually; you can check the schedule at http://www.seattlefarmcoop.com/. There, both nonmembers and members (who get a discount with membership & additional discounts for volunteering) can pick up local and/or organic feed, basic farming supplies, and specialty coops and waterers made by other co-op members. Co-op members can also take part in group buys organized several times a year, direct from seed companies and WA state farmers: organic #2 heirloom tomatoes for $1/lb., organic apples for $10 for 20 lbs….extraordinary deals abound. Other benefits include the tool library, barter fairs, and other social gatherings.
A lifetime membership is only $50 (or $25 and 2 3-hour volunteer shifts). Belonging to the yahoo listserv is free, so dip your toes in the water, and join us…. Becoming a member is easy, an application can be found on the website or you can come visit us at 1817 S Jackson Street, Seattle, WA. Access to the warehouse is from the alley, S. Jackson Place. If you have any questions about what Seattle Farm Co-op has to offer or you would like to get involved as well as volunteer, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Join us in our quest for healthy, sustainable, and local food!
posted 2/10/12 - A big thanks to Beth Hayes for letting us spread the word on the Seattle Farm Co-op.