Enjoy a Sustainable Picnic

ImagePrepare an earth-friendly picnic basket to enjoy—and protect—nature this summer. Our co-op stores and café rely on producers focused on sustainability, as well as quality.

We’re featuring some of our favorites that travel well and promote a healthy planet, including Seward-made Snack Packs, produce from Wisconsin Growers in our deli salads, bread from the Wedge Table on Nicollet Avenue and raw honey delivered by bike from Minneapolis-based The Beez Kneez. A bring-anywhere protein, Tanka Bars support the return of buffalo—tatanka in the Lakota language—to Native communities.

Oregon’s Scenic Valley Farms uses high tunnels to grow quality produce while naturally fending off pests and nurturing the soil. Cedar Grove Cheese in Plain, Wisconsin, naturally cleans water before it’s discharged into Honey Creek. All of these picnic staples can be found at Seward Co-op. Learn more about our producers’ sustainability practices below.

Seward-made Snack Packs make picnics easy with on-the-go snacks like veggies and hummus or meat, cheese and crackers. Our Snack Packs are crafted right at the co-op. Stack, dip, munch, repeat.

Wedge Co-op Bread is made at the Wedge Table on Nicollet Avenue. With a facility that’s earned LEED Silver Certification, the Wedge is committed to its sustainability goals and reducing waste.

Tanka Bars are made from prairie-raised buffalo, or bison, a keystone species that regenerates native ecosystems. A South Dakota company, Native American Natural Foods supports the return of buffalo—tatanka in the Lakota language—to Native communities.

Once Again Nut Butter, an employee-owned company in New York, supports organic and sustainable farming practices, fair pay and economic development among global suppliers and their communities. It forms partnerships promoting bee farm sustainability and helping prevent colony collapse disorder.

Cedar Grove Cheese in Plain, Wisconsin, recognized that contaminated water was the cheese factory’s biggest waste product. To clean the wastewater before it discharges into Honey Creek, the company built its Living Machine greenhouse. The working ecosystem uses microbes and hydroponic plants to naturally process washwater.

Oregon’s Scenic Valley Farms uses high tunnels and constantly works to improve production processes. High tunnels offer small farmers an extended growing season and better quality produce, with protection from pests and weeds. Scenic Valley uses insect netting and vinegar traps to keep pests off the plants and applies compost to keep the soil healthy.

Seward Community Co-op’s production kitchen at the Creamery Café, located two blocks west of the Franklin store, prepares salads with ingredients from Wisconsin Growers, a farming cooperative. Its members believe that if farmers take “good care of the soil, the soil will pay back with high-quality produce.” Wisconsin Growers’ farmers plant, tend and harvest crops exclusively using horses, horse machinery and hand tools.

The Beez Kneez delivers high-quality honey throughout the Twin Cities by bicycle. Minneapolis-based beekeeper Kristy Lynn Allen works with Bar Bell Bee Ranch in Squaw Lake, Minnesota, to produce four types of raw, unprocessed honey. Seward Co-op offers clover basswood and buckwheat varieties.