Spring is here!

April 2022 Word from the Board
Cal Rebhuhn, Wheatsfield Board of Directors

Spring is here! April snow notwithstanding, this is an exciting time of the year, when green things start popping and long-laid Winter plans can finally get underway in the garden. I can say from my experience that once the afternoons start getting darker and anything still flowering migrates inside, all I can think about is the coming reinvigoration of the world around us!

It’s fitting enough that April is celebrated as Earth Month, a time when we can all appreciate not only the rich beauty of our shared environment, but also its fragility. Humans can affect the environment in many ways, both good and bad. Let’s look at some of the good!

Food production can be a heavily impactful process for our environment, but it doesn’t have to be. In terms of practical, immediate-impact choices that we can all make to improve the environment, our food choices are among the top. When you shop at Wheatsfield Co-op, you can support both local farmers and sustainable farming practices. Less travel time for your produce cuts carbon emissions in transportation; eco-friendly agriculture maintains and improves the quality of the soil and the surrounding ecosystem.

Dietary choices like reducing reliance on meat products can also make a substantial difference. It takes significantly more resources to generate meat or meat-based products than produce (or plant-based meat alternatives). During our Earth Day Bulk sale, running April 21st through the 23rd, you can save not only money but resources by reusing your own clean containers, which reduces the amount of extra packaging produced and finding its way into our soil and waterways.

And nothing tastes better than food you grow yourself! A windowsill or backyard garden is a great way to participate in the food cycle firsthand, and you find a wide selection of Seed Savers Exchange seed packets for sale in the store. Don’t forget that on Saturday, April 23, from 10am-2pm
you can join us outside the store (or in the teaching kitchen) to start your own seeds from Seed Savers Exchange and chat about all things green.

Safeguarding our environment goes hand-in-hand with active involvement in support of our community. On April 29th and 30th, Ames’ annual Stash the Trash event is an opportunity to help clean up an area in town with your neighbors. Alternately, another volunteer event on April 30th with the City of Ames will work to clean the Ioway Creek, one of many vulnerable waterways in our state.

I feel so fortunate when I look around and see cleaner creeks, potable water, healthier soil, and a community that believes that these things are worth preserving. I feel just as lucky that we have a co-op like Wheatsfield in our community that facilitates so many positive developments in our shared environment during this lovely season. Even with the occasional mid-April snow. Happy Spring!