Author Archives: Coreen

Raffle for Ninja Blender


Sponsored by Nuts To You!


Nuts To You, a Canadian-owned company, is sponsoring a raffle at the Co-op!  Submit your name to win a Ninja Professional Blender.  Put your name in the box by November 30th (only one entry per membership, please). The draw will take place on Thursday, December 1st. 

ninjaDuring our November specials (November 9th – 22nd), Nuts To You Peanut Pecan Butter and Rainforest Nut Butter is on sale.  The Pecan Peanut Butter is an original blend of peanuts from Argentina and pecans from the USA, and Rainforest Nut Butter is a blend of Brazil nuts, cashews and whole coconut.  No salt, sugar or flavouring are added.  Both are non-GMO and gluten-free.

Nuts To You is currently sponsoring community events throughout Canada, and we appreciate their support of our Co-op!  Look for more deals on Nuts To You nut butters throughout the winter, and remember that you’re not only getting the best taste, and quality but you’re also supporting a network of local businesses and other co-ops.


It’s Co-op Week!



Let’s Celebrate Co-op Week!

Being a member of a cooperative means being a part of something larger. The Cortes Natural Food Co-op is celebrating National Co-op Week along with the nearly 50,000 other cooperative businesses serving more than 135 million people across North America.  Co-op Week takes place from October 16th to 22nd in Canada and October is Co-op Month in the United States.

“Cooperatives Build” is the theme this year.  There are so many ways that cooperatives help to build stronger communities and stronger local economies.  Our cooperative had nearly $1.7M in sales last year, with all of those dollars being reinvested in the co-op.  On average, for every dollar spent at a local food co-op, another $1.60 is generated in the local economy.

Consider these ways that co-ops build:

Cooperatives Build Trust

Most co-ops strive to adhere to the seven cooperative principles, which combine to help build trust between the co-op, its members and the community.  For example, the first principle is Voluntary and Open Membership, which means that we are a voluntary organization open to all people to use our services and willing to accept the responsibility of membership. The second principle, Democratic Member Control, gives members a voice in the cooperative’s policies and decisions. Through the fifth principle, Education, Training and Information, co-ops enable their members to contribute to the organization’s development.  At CNFC, we look for educational opportunities whenever possible.  For example, we are participating in Non-GMO month this October through articles and in-store information.  Along with the installation of our new waste-water system, we used grant money for a series of educational panels about clean water, septic systems, and the recent water problems in Hague and Gunflint Lakes.


Cooperatives Build Community

The seventh cooperative principle is Concern for Community. Cooperatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through employee involvement in local organizations, through charitable contributions to community efforts and through support for schools.  At CNFC, we consider the whole community in our decision-making processes.  For example, during the land purchase process, we had a number of member visioning session and we relied on volunteers – both as individuals and in committees – throughout the process.  The fund-raising effort depended on all of our members, and we now hold the land in stewardship for the community.  Any future development of the property will certainly involve similar community-based and member-driven processes.


Cooperatives Build Jobs

Cooperatives generate jobs in their communities and keep profits local. Some cooperatives take part in community improvement programs, ensuring that everyone has an opportunity to benefit from the cooperative experience.  At CNFC, we’ve greatly increased employment opportunities over the past five years.  We’ve gone from a schedule of 200 hours per week (5 full-time equivalents) to nearly 320 hours per week (8 full-time equivalents) – and that’s just the winter schedule!  Last summer, we had 37 people on our payroll for a total of 500+ hours per week.  During our last fiscal year, we paid out nearly $320,000 in wages.


Cooperatives Build a Better World

Through all of the above ways, cooperatives build a better world!  For more stories about how co-ops around the world make it a better place through the seven co-operative principles, watch for an upcoming PBS Series documentary. This one-hour documentary follows the work of the National Cooperative Business Association CLUSA International, celebrating 100 years of cooperatives that build a better world through seven stories featuring members in Washington, Massachusetts, and Mississippi and international projects in Mozambique and East Timor.


Wanted: Marketing & Events Coordinator!


Position Summary:

The Cortes Natural Food Co-op’s Marketing and Events Coordinator is responsible for planning and producing events from conception through to completion; designing and executing marketing efforts; and providing excellent customer service to customers, co-workers, and other parties.


Customer Service Responsibilities:

– Provide excellent and professional customer service both externally and internally
– Role model excellent customer service for staff
– Explain co-op policies and procedures clearly, completely and concisely to staff, customers, and others

Event Responsibilities:

– Plan and produce a variety of events, including those with external participants (e.g., musicians)
– Organize and manage all event logistics, including decor, food, staffing, entertainment, transportation, promotion, and finances
– Specify staffing requirements and coordinate their activities
– Ensure compliance with insurance, legal, health and safety obligations
– Ensure appropriate event promotion
– Solicit and communicate with external participants for events
– Design, communicate, and follow event policies and procedures
– Gather feedback from events and improve processes

Marketing Responsibilities:

– Prepare and execute marketing strategies and objectives
– Design and produce advertising for local, regional, and online distribution
– Produce promotional content for a variety of media and outlets
– Establish major marketing campaigns in collaboration with the General Manager and other stakeholders
– Assess the success of major or long-term marketing campaigns
– Conduct market research and customer surveys
– Prepare internal marketing reports
– Work with graphic artists and other professionals as necessary
– Assist the General Manager on all marketing efforts

Other Responsibilities:

– Demonstrate a willingness and ability to cooperate and communicate with co-workers, supervisors, and outside contacts in a timely and appropriate manner
– Complete goals and tasks in a timely manner, meeting agreed deadlines
– Participate in the staff evaluation process
– Participate in staff meetings as requested
– Notify the General Manager and team about schedule changes
– Know and promote co-op principles and mission; ability to explain membership clearly and efficiently; and ability to follow Co-op work policies and procedures
– Keep the General Manager informed of any ideas and/or issues
– Perform other duties as assigned by the General Manager


– Proven ability to provide excellent, professional customer service
– Proven event management experience
– Proven marketing and advertising experience
– Ability to work with little or no supervision, communicate effectively and work under deadlines
– Demonstrated ability to effectively multi-task, including organizational, prioritization, and time management skills
– Effective communication and collaboration skills
– Basic computer skills, including office software
– Available to work a variety of shifts including evenings and weekends
– Willingness to be open, to learn, and to take on new responsibilities

Essential Physical Requirements:

– Standing, walking, bending, sitting, and reaching frequently
– Ability to lift up to 50 pounds
– Ability to operate all equipment necessary to perform the job

Work Environment:

Fast-paced kitchen and cafe environment. At times may work with or near moving mechanical parts and in hot/cold climate conditions. Ability to work in moderate and loud noise environments.


Employees are expected to act in the best interest of the Co-op, even if doing so requires actions or responsibilities not listed in the above job description. The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by those assigned to this job. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all duties and responsibilities required of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Other duties may be assigned which are not considered essential and may not be listed here.


Open Mic: Brownies & Ice Cream!


Saturday, September 24th at 7:00 pm at the Co-op Cafe. All brownies come with a free scoop of ice cream. Single scoop cones only $1 and double scoop cones only $2 ― and performers get a free ice cream. Bring songs, poems, comedy, or anything else you’d like to share. Or just bring an appetite for sweets!


Baker Wanted!

We want to hire a baker!  This position is part-time and year-round; three or four shifts are currently available.  Duties include baking, prepping, and dishwashing.  Experience preferred.
Benefits include competitive pay and a 10% discount on store and cafe purchases.  Please bring your resume and/or list of qualifications to the store or send it to eric [at] cortescoop [dot] ca before Wednesday, September 21st.

Woman holding dough heart in his hands

Tallulah Rendall Concert: September 2



Tallulah Rendall is playing at the Co-op Cafe on Friday, September 2nd at 7 p.m.. She is a 2014 Arts & Culture Woman of The Future Highly Acclaimed Nominee, 3-time album crowd-funder, multi-instrumentalist, producer, heralded as “London’s most creative woman” by AOL for her previous 3 albums, BBC Bristol Introducing Artist and Independent folk/rock Songwriter. She has toured worldwide including Japan, Australia, New Zealand and has performed at all the major UK festivals.

Celebrated for her “mesmerising” (BBC London) performances and her beautiful and original album releases; her albums have all been released accompanied by hardback books containing artwork and stories. “Tallulah is an ‘ionic artist breaking boundaries’” (Kabult Magazine), a “unique talent” (Spoonfed), and “one to watch” (Evening Standard). See for more information.

We’re Hiring!


The Co-op is hiring for a Baker, a Cook, and a Store Clerk immediately.  Positions are permanent and hours vary with the seasons.  Experience preferred.  Benefits include competitive pay and a 10% discount on store and cafe purchases.  Please bring your resume and/or list of qualifications to the store or send it to Eric (eric[at]cortescoop[dot]ca).


Woman holding dough heart in his hands