By Katie Shatzer
My organic living “Aha!” moment was at a cocktail party, when I began debating the use of synthetic hormones in dairy cows with a sales representative from a dairy pharmaceutical company.
A simple glass of milk signifies an important shift in my lifestyle and beliefs.
This recent conversation started like polite chitchat often does: I asked the man about his line of work, and he replied that he was a salesman in the dairy industry.
I replied with a generic response, and he continued describing the products he sells. “Have you ever heard of rBST?” Continue reading
By Tom Havran
What does fair trade mean? Merriam Webster defines the word “trade” as:
- The business of buying and selling or bartering commodities.
- An act or instance of trading…an exchange of property usually without use of money.
Cardamom is grown on small farms, in steep, rugged terrain. Our cardamom is grown by a group of farmer co-ops in Guatemala, who are part of our Well Earth program.
I always thought that a trade was inherently a fair exchange. A person couldn’t get something great in exchange for junk. Nor could the trade work if one person took advantage of the other: in the lunchroom during grade school, I couldn’t get a friend’s tater tots for anything less than my chocolate pudding desert with graham cracker crust (my mushy, cold, cooked-to-oblivion green beans just wouldn’t do.) Continue reading
Since no Cinco de Mayo party is complete without fresh guacamole, you probably carefully selected the perfect avocados during your pre-party shopping trip days ago. But, what if the day before before your party, you discover that, despite a few days of relaxing on your countertop, your avocados remain rock-hard, unlikely to be easily mashed into your favorite flavorful dip?
Not to worry! We’ve researched how to ripen an avocado quickly — and added other must-know facts about avocados here:
There are close to 500 varieties of avocados.
Avocados are actually fruits, and are often eaten with sugar or as an ice cream flavor for dessert in Brazil.
An avocado ripens in 5 stages, from light green to ripe. Keep these in mind when you choose your avocado at the store. Continue reading
By Katie Shatzer
The internet is full of answers to life’s questions. Some have clear answers: “What’s the weather going to be today?” (Cold and rainy, if you spent April in the Midwest.) Others are much more complex: “Is organic better for my family?”
We certainly don’t have all the answers (not even close!), but to help you out, we have answers for five everyday questions in this month’s webfinds:
Reducing waste can be simple.
1. Is organic better? A middle school student took on this question after she witnessed her parents debating the topic. She worked with researchers at a local university to design an experiment that shows organic is better — for fruit flies, at least.
2. How can I reduce waste? To celebrate Earth Month, the Bulk is Green Council (of which Frontier is a part) raised awareness of how you can reduce packaging waste by simply buying certain items in bulk. Continue reading
Good Colorado sauce begins with your dried chili peppers.
By Tom Havran
Overused words like “authentic,” “traditional” and “real” are proffered like bottomless bowls of genetically modified corn chips and watery salsa to describe the corporatized Mexican food that is so sadly pervasive in America these days. (I weep for what Taco Bell has done to Mexican food.)
For your Cinco de Mayo party this year, honor the true culinary spirit of Mexico by making Colorado sauce. My recipe below employs native ingredients with a simple method that will lend Mexican flavors and aromas to an endless array of dishes – from enchiladas to rice and beans.
Of all cuisines, Mexican is my favorite (which is why I’ve made Colorado sauce on countless occasions), and at no other time of the year does it seem less honored or more insulted than when it’s hijacked as part of the Americanized take on Cinco de Mayo celebrations.
Every May 5th, we don our cheap sombreros, fake “bandito” mustaches and gather at the local “Mexican” eatery to get boozily obnoxious on overly sweet margaritas, canned beans and gallons of oozing Colby Jack cheese. The people of Mexico, their culture and the food they have given the world deserve a lot more respect. Continue reading
By Tom Havran
My organic living “Aha!” moment was when I experienced the difference between real, farm-fresh eggs and those from factory farm, caged hens.
The chicken coop from my childhood still stands at my parents’ Iowa farm today.
Me at age 9
Around 1971, at age 9 or so, my first set of chores was to tend a flock of laying hens (leghorns) in the ramshackle chicken coop on the farm that I grew up on. I remember their snowy white feathers, bright yellow legs and jiggling red combs as they scurried and scratched about around my legs. This, my first lesson in taking responsibility consisted of many tasks: feeding and watering the birds, cleaning and changing their bedding, gathering and washing the eggs. Continue reading
By Katie Shatzer
From Thanksgiving to National Margarita Day, the meaning of a holiday is different for each of us. This is true for Earth Day (which is Monday, April 22, by the way): For some, it’s a celebration of the planet we inhabit; for others, it’s a yearly wake-up call that we are rapidly destroying it. Either way, we’ve found six ways to incorporate love for the Earth into your everyday activities.
1. Buy in bulk. Frontier is a member of the Bulk Is Green Council, which exists to educate consumers on the environmental and financial benefits of buying bulk foods. Take the council’s Earth Month pledge to buy bulk food once a week throughout April. By the end of the month, you’ll probably want to make it a habit!
Frontier tallgrass prairie in Norway, Iowa in mid-summer.
2. Spend time outside. Wandering around in places like our tallgrass prairie gives you a greater appreciation for nature and more motivation to protect it. Continue reading
Image courtesy of Holistic Moms Network
By Katie Shatzer
We anticipate few events throughout the year as much as the first truly spring day. Sunshine, warmer air and the promise of new growth all around quickly erase our memories of winter’s short daylight hours, brutal snowstorms and inevitable bouts with illness. On the Internet, we anticipated spring through handy tips for how to clean up your diet, your beauty routine and your home for spring.
Check out our favorite web finds from March, then get outside and enjoy the fresh air!
Understanding where your food comes from is an important step in moving away from processed foods. In March, Holistic Moms Network focused their monthly Holistic Living Challenge on the theme, “Get to Know Your Food!” If you missed the March challenge, you can join in on April’s challenge, centered around helping someone you know go green. Continue reading
This post is the first in a series in which Frontier employees share their organic living “Aha!” moment – an experience that shaped their commitment to a more mindful lifestyle.
By Alan Miles
My life changed in 1971 when I walked into New Pioneer Co-op at 518 Bowery Street in Iowa City.
New Pioneer Co-op opened in Iowa City in 1971. It was after walking through this door, at 518 Bowery St., that I first encountered organic living.
It wasn’t that I suddenly saw the whole truth about natural and organic food in that moment, of course — it was more a butterfly effect from a seemingly minor event that reverberated across decades and almost every aspect of my future life. Continue reading
By Charlynn Avery
When it comes to blending perfumes, essential oils are a tried and true way to incorporate nature into your own signature scent. Homemade perfume is easy to make and isn’t as expensive as department store perfumes – plus, it can be made with ingredients that are friendly to our bodies and our planet.
Blend patchouli, sweet orange and ylang ylang essential oils for a sweet, floral homemade perfume.
Once you understand the basics, experiment with making your own blend or try one of our recipes below.
Choosing your aroma
To make a great perfume, get to know your aromatic preferences. Are you prone to florals? Do you like earthy or musky aromas? Are you drawn to light citrus aromas? What smells the best to you and on you? Once you figure out what you like, choose recipes that combine your favorite aromas. Continue reading