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907, 2020

Weekend Flash Deals

July 9th, 2020|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

This weekend only! While supplies last, no further discounts, everyone saves!

707, 2020

Body Care Favorites for Summer

July 7th, 2020|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

By Kim McDermott, Wellness Manager

Summertime in Iowa is a great time for getting outside and enjoying the sunshine and the beauty of the natural world.  And though you may love the sun and the outdoors, these hot, windy, buggy summer days can take a toll on your skin and body. So if you’re playing hard this summer, be sure to arm yourself with a good quality sunscreen, bug spray, and other items to protect your skin and body.

Below are a few of my top favorite must haves for summer.

Bug Soother Bug Repellent

Produced by a family owned company in Iowa, this all natural bug spray contains lemongrass and vanilla. It’s deet- free and safe for adults, children and pets.  Many Iowans swear by this product, and it smells great too!

Aura Cacia Hand Sanitizer

In these unprecedented times, a good hand sanitizer has become a constant companion for most of us. Aura Cacia is a brand of Frontier Cooperative Herbs, a member owed natural products cooperative located in Norway, Iowa. Frontier Coop is a huge success story in Iowa and in the cooperative world. It gives back both financially and socially, giving around $1 million each year to projects in the US and around the world.  Aura Cacia began producing this hand sanitizer exclusively to help with shortages in hand sanitizers during the pandemic.

Badger ‘Clear Zinc’ Sunscreen Lotion

Badger sunscreens have always been a customer favorite here at the coop. They consistently garner a top safety rating by the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database, and are a true reef-safe sunscreen (some sunscreens make this claim, but still use reef harming ingredients!).  This new lotion formula applies easily, and uses a clear non-nano zinc oxide, which acts as a physical barrier on top of the skin to prevent sunburn.  Clear zinc offers the additional benefit of not leaving a white sheen on the skin, unlike regular zinc oxide.

Aura Cacia Neroli and Rose Hydrosols

True hydrosols are the pure botanical water left behind after distilling essential oils, and these are the real deal! These lovely smelling hydrosols quench dry summer skin, and can be used as a facial toner after cleansing, as a hydrator, or body mist. Store it in the refrigerator for a refreshing splash of hydrating aromatherapy on a hot day!

Andalou CannaCell Happy Day Cream

A new vegan face cream that uses hemp stem cells, hemp seed oil, Vitamin C, and resveratrol to keep your face looking smooth and hydrated. The sweet citrusy fragrance makes it a pleasure to use each morning.

HiBar Solid Shampoo Bar

A solid shampoo bar is perfect for summer camping and traveling.  Shampoo bars mean no messy liquids that spill, and no plastic package ending up in the landfill.  These bars perform like a salon quality shampoo, and come without the stuff you don’t want like parabens, sulfates or phthalates.  Conditioner bars available too!

LifeFlo Magnesium Lotion

Magnesium is known as the relaxation mineral, as it assists in the relaxation response of muscles.  It’s necessary in hundreds of biochemical reactions in the body, and maintains healthy nerve and muscles, keeps the heart beating steady, and helps keep bones strong.  Being physically active and perspiring a lot on a hot summer day can deplete your body of electrolytes like magnesium. The magnesium in this lotion is absorbed through the skin, making it an ideal treatment after strenuous activity and for sore tired muscles.  A magnesium topical lotion can be applied directly to the area that needs it the most, like sore calves or hamstrings. Great for helping prevent those painful night time leg cramps too!

Ultima Replenisher Electrolyte Packets

These handy flavored stick packs are designed to be added to your water bottle to replenish necessary electrolytes. Not only are they great for rehydrating on hot summer days, they are especially helpful for athletes, farmers, and anyone working or exercising out in the summer heat.  One packet provides essential electrolytes like sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium, and does not contain sugar or artificial sweeteners, colors or flavor.  In cherry pomegranate or lemonade flavors.

307, 2020

Grab lunch with us on the 4th!

July 3rd, 2020|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Grab lunch with us on the 4th!

Stop by for Local Beeler’s pork hot dogs, Tofurky beer brats, and baked beans on our hotbar. Chips, cold drinks, cookies and berry shortcake parfaits available too!

July 4th STORE HOURS: 10am-6pm

LUNCH: 11am-2pm

Curbside Pickup orders not available.

107, 2020

Are you willing to run for a seat on the Board of Directors?

July 1st, 2020|Categories: Blog|Tags: |0 Comments

By Liz Kolbe, Board Member

I lost my bid for student council representative from Mrs. Hollibaugh’s homeroom in the sixth grade. Years later I was not elected Homecoming Queen. In graduate school I was not chosen as the winner of the chili cook-off, placing third to a chili with no beans, no tomatoes, and no ground meat (I maintain it was simply a cheese dip).

Soon after moving to Ames, some friends asked me to run for a seat on the Wheatsfield Board. Losing an election can put a hit on our ego, especially if it’s for something we care about. I cared about Wheatsfield, but as a new member I decided it was pretty ego-safe; if I lost, I didn’t know that many people anyway. When I ask members to consider running for the Wheatsfield Board of Directors, I sometimes sense that they, too, don’t want to run in the election and lose in front of their peers.

But while serving on the Board and recruiting candidates, I’ve learned that running for the Wheatsfield Board isn’t an act of celebrity (like Homecoming Queen or the chili cook-off), it’s an act of service. You are saying to the Wheatsfield membership: “I am willing to give of my time and skills to ensure that our Co-op continues in the right direction.” It’s a wonderful gift to give to Wheatsfield and the membership. No matter the outcome of the election, we will be grateful to know we can count on you to be an active leader in the Co-op.

What the Board does:
The Board works together with Wheatsfield management and staff to ensure that the needs of our member-owners are being met. The Directors work as a team to set policy, hire and evaluate the general manager, maintain the fiduciary responsibility of the Co-op and represent the membership to create a vision for the Co-op’s future. The Board meets monthly, and is also involved with Co-op events, like the Fourth of July parade and “Coffee with the Board.” Serving on the Board has allowed me to learn more about our Co-op, to meet many of our member-owners and to work alongside a group of caring and committed people.

All member-owners are welcome to apply to be a candidate for the Board of Directors. Three seats are up for election. Apply by Monday, August 24, 11:59pm. Voting will commence on October 1, both online and in the store.

What the Student Board Member does:
The NEW Student Member seat on the Wheatsfield Board is a non-voting, advisory position that the Board established to make sure that student members’ voices and the unique perspective they offer are heard in the governance process of the Cooperative. It is a 1 year appointment that starts in September of each year and ends in August of the following year according to the Iowa State University school calendar. All student members (both equity and non-equity members) of Wheatsfield Cooperative are eligible to apply for the position.

The completed Student Board Application must be received by 11:59pm on Monday, August 24, 2020 to be considered by the Nominations and Recruitment Committee.  The NRC will vet all applications received from student members interested in serving in the Student Member position on the Board and will submit a list of potential candidates to the Board for consideration of the appointment.

How to Apply

Read and complete the application packet:
• Pick up an application at the registers, or
• Download Board Member application here.
• Download Student Board Member application here.

Submit application to Linda Johnson, General Manager, via email or in person, by Monday, August 24, 2020, 11:59pm.

2506, 2020

June Produce Parable

June 25th, 2020|Categories: Blog|2 Comments

Summer Produce Begins

By Adam Calder, Wheatsfield Co-op Produce Manager

The month of June has been an exciting one in the Wheatsfield Cooperative produce department! The local produce has been rolling in steadily since the beginning of the month, and shows no signs of slowing. In fact, due to the recent Covid related market disruptions, there is an abundance of local produce on the market that was originally intended for restaurants. We are doing our best in the produce department to order, stock and feature as much local produce as we can procure.

We had a brief flirtation with some Iowa strawberries from Hassevoort Farm in Leon. Alas, the weather got too hot and dry and the berry production slowed down significantly. All hope is not lost, as we have yet to hear from The Berry Patch in Nevada. They usually have some strawberries available starting the last week of June or the first week of July, and we will bring in as many as they have to sell as soon as we get word the berries are ripe.

The local greens are of exceptionally high quality this season. The bunches of winterbor kale, lacinato kale, red kale, collards, Swiss chard and rainbow chard have all been bursting with crunchy, flavorful leaves. The zucchini has a slight sheen to the skin that you only see when it’s just picked off the vine, and a beautiful mottled green pattern reminiscent of the sun and shadow dappled floor of a lush summer garden. The piquant smell of the cilantro bunches fill the produce department when we stock them, drawing in curious customers trying to find the source of the arresting aroma.

We are up to our ears in oyster mushrooms from Joygrow. If you are curious to try a locally grown oyster mushroom, then these convenient packages of mushrooms contain are perfect. They are just the right size to add them to meals or recipes, and if you don’t use them up the package re-closes and helps extend the shelf life of these earthy delicacies.

The heirloom tomatoes from Lee’s Greens have been out of this world! Their flavor is unmatched, and they come in a delightful array of shapes, sizes, colors and varieties. They bring a splash of color and form to the dinner table, and truly are a perfect example of the beauty and diversity that is life’s rich pageant.

Salama Greenhouse in Boone has been delivering us weekly orders with two hundred pounds of red slicing tomatoes, and fifty to one hundred pints of his popular Lil’ Joey grape tomatoes. You almost feel the hot summer sun radiating out from these bright red beauties. When you stand next to them, and inhale deeply, you’d swear you were standing in the middle of a tomato bed.

Sadly, we must say goodbye for the year to the local asparagus from Iowa Asparagus LLC. They grew and picked eight thousand pounds of asparagus this spring. That is an incredible feat, and I was told by the farmer that it was harvested by hand by just four people!

Stay tuned for more local update. You might not be able to count on much in these tumultuous times, but you can count on your local cooperative produce department to continue to be here to serve our community.

2406, 2020

4 DIY Summer Skin Care Recipes

June 24th, 2020|Categories: Blog, Recipes|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

Recipes presented by Elise Fiscus, Clinical Aesthetician, in the Co-op Class “Summer Self-Care with Essential Oils.”

Updated: June 2020

DIY Body Care

SPF Lip Balm

  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp shredded cocoa butter
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp beeswax pastilles
  • 1/2 tsp carrot seed oil or red raspberry seed oil to help reduce inflammation and heal the skin and has an SPF rating of between 30 and 50
  • 15-25 drops essential oils

Choose from these essential oils: Geranium, Lavender, Peppermint, Clary Sage, Spearmint

Melt on stove over low heat. Use either a pipet or funnel for pouring depending on containers selected for storage.

After Sun Spray

  • 2 Tbsp alcohol or paraben free witch hazel, refreshes and soothes skin, decreases itching and reduces likelihood of skin peeling and flaking
  • 1/4 c aloe vera gel, moisturizes skin, helps reduce signs of aging, soothes skin and reduces inflammation
  • 1/2 tsp vitamin e oil, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory; healing agent
  • 2 Tbsp fractionated coconut oil, carrier oil, moisturizes skin
  • 10 drops lavender essential oil, soothes skin irritations, cooling
  • 2 drops peppermint or spearmint essential oil

NOTE: Peppermint essential oil can be a skin irritant if used in high concentration.

Measure ingredients, mix well and pour into 4oz bottles.

Summer Citrus Scrub

  • 2 c sugar, anything from superfine to turbinado
  • 3/4 c coconut oil
  • Juice of one blood orange or other citrus fruit
  • 10 drops vanilla essential oil or other scent
  • 2 oz plastic or glass jar

Stir ingredients and store tightly sealed (use within 2 weeks).

To use the scrub: apply a quarter-size amount of product to each area of the body and use gentle, circular motions to apply, spend some time with this…make it a part of your self-care ritual and enjoy the aroma-therapy!. Once finished, rinse away the scrub to reveal softer, brighter skin. Try using just before shaving.

Natural Bug Spray for Adults

  • 2 oz witch hazel, without alcohol or parabens
  • 2 oz distilled water
  • 40-50 drops of a mixture of essential oils from the list below
  • 4 oz spray bottle

Choose from the following essential oils: Geranium, Lavender, Patchouli, Eucalyptus, Lemongrass, Cedarwood, Spearmint, Peppermint, Citronella, Rosemary, Tea tree (to repel ticks)

2306, 2020

A Word From the Board, June 2020

June 23rd, 2020|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Casey Szymanski
Wheatsfield Board of Directors
June 19, 2020
I hope you had an opportunity to read the statement shared earlier this month from the Co-op about why we stand with Black Lives Matter, demanding justice for those that have suffered and died due to police brutality and demanding an end to the oppression and dehumanization of Black people in our communities.
One of the reasons that I have been passionate about Wheatsfield, and cooperatives in general, is that the cooperative movement arose as an alternative economic model centered on community and equity in response to oppression of class, gender, and race. There is an incredible historical legacy of the Black community’s contributions to and involvement in the mutual aid and cooperative movements in the United States. Successful farming and food cooperatives arose in the south during the late 1800’s as a tool toward the elimination of economic exploitation for Black people. They were able to purchase land together, share resources, provide jobs and affordable goods, and build leadership and networks throughout the country. However, unlike white-led cooperatives these businesses faced the additional challenges of state-sanctioned disinvestment and violence, and racist economic policies. Many of these early Black cooperatives eventually ended under the oppressive legacy of the Jim Crow system. Today, there are successful co-ops that predominantly serve Black Americans despite continuing to face steep economic challenges while existing in a cooperative movement that is dominated by white voices that have been largely quiet on issues of racial inequity.
Wheatsfield was founded on the principles of working for justice, sustainability, health, and concern for community. As a board member, with a responsibility to oversee that we continue to be guided by our principles, it is clear to me that unless we are an explicit and actively anti-racist organization, we are not aligned with our values. Systemic racism permeates every facet of our society and we will not realize a just food system without working for racial justice for all members of our society.
The incredible staff of Wheatsfield, even amid the challenges of the ongoing pandemic and the daily challenges of the grocery business, have already committed to initial concrete and immediate actions:
  • Review hiring and recruitment practices to expand our reach for new employees
  • Create a staff committee on equity at the co-op
  • Include training on equity issues for managers and staff
  • Explore a low-income membership program
  • Donate money to organizations that support racial justice
  • Evaluate product selection to ensure we have products and price selections for all sections of our community
In addition, as a board whose positions are currently filled by all white people, it’s especially important for us to articulate specific immediate actions we can take in addition to our long term commitment. In a transparent effort to assign accountability, we commit to establish as a board or, as applicable, complete the following actions within the next year:
  • Review and transform board candidate and committee member recruitment strategies to prioritize People of Color. This includes, but is not limited to, updates to board candidate application, critical discussions around relationship building and removal of recruitment barriers, and intentional recruitment of People of Color to the board.
  • Review Wheatsfield’s core values and vision statements to explicitly articulate our commitment to anti-racism, inclusion, and equity.
  • Support staff and their new committee on equity through participation and dialogue, where appropriate, to help build an anti-racist and inclusive store culture together.
  • Review the onboarding process for new board members to include anti-racism materials and appropriate resources on inclusion and equity with the goal of stimulating intentional conversations about our commitment to Wheatsfield’s values.
  • Commit to holding a board retreat on a regular basis that allows conscious space for education, discussion and evaluation of our actions to live up to our anti-racist and other values of the Co-op.
Transforming organizational biases rooted in white supremacy is a long-term culture building process, but I believe that with a commitment to difficult conversations, reflective learning and accountability we can work to build an anti-racist culture within our governance, employees, and community. Beginning with the above actions, we are working to create a permanent foundation so that this work will continue. As always, the board and staff welcome the input of all Wheatsfield member-owners, especially those that have been marginalized due to our inaction. We are committed to being transparent and sharing updates with which we hold ourselves and each other accountable to be a truly equitable community, in spirit with the foundations of the cooperative movement.
In solidarity, Casey Szymanski
on behalf of the Wheatsfield Board of Directors
*To learn more about the incredible and courageous stories of the Black cooperative community, I would recommend the books Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice by Jessica Gordon Nembhard and Freedom Farmers: Agricultural Resistance and the Black Freedom Movement by Monica M. White
1506, 2020

June Change for Community Recipient: Ames Branch NAACP

June 15th, 2020|Categories: Blog, Co-op Nickel|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Our Mission

The mission of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is to ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate racial hatred and discrimination.


The following statement of objectives is found on the first page of the NAACP Constitution – the principal objectives of the Association shall be:
• To ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of all citizens.
• To achieve equality of rights and eliminate race prejudice among the citizens of the United States.
• To remove all barriers of racial discrimination through democratic processes
• To seek enactment and enforcement of federal, state, and local laws securing civil rights.
• To inform the public of the adverse effects of racial discrimination and to seek its elimination.
• To educate persons as to their constitutional rights and to take all lawful action to secure the exercise thereof, and to take any other lawful action in furtherance of these objectives, consistent with the NAACP’s Articles of Incorporation and this Constitution.

Our History

The Ames Branch of the NAACP was incorporated in 1993. The purposes and aims of the Branch are consistent with the National Association – to improve the political, educational, social and economic status of minority groups; to eliminate racial prejudice; to keep the public aware of the adverse effects of racial discrimination; and to take lawful action to secure its elimination, consistent with the efforts of the national organization and in conformity with the Articles of Incorporation of the Association, its Constitution and By-Laws and as directed by the National Board of Directors.
The first monthly meeting of the Ames Branch of the NAACP was held on November 29, 1994. The application for charter was presented at this meeting and the first slate of officers was elected. Officers included Edna Y. Clinton, President: Dr. George A. Jackson, First Vice President; Myron Samuels, Secretary; and Shirley Barnes, Treasurer. Dr. Jackson became president in later part of 1995.
The first Freedom Fund Banquet was held in 1996, and the event was held yearly through 2009. During the Banquets, the organization brought in nationally-recognized speakers and awarded student scholarships. The organization was reactivated in 2011, and the Freedom Fund Banquet was reinstituted in 2012 under Edna Y. Clinton, who serves as President. During her tenure the Branch has been active in the state and community, hosting conversations between community members and the local police, being involved with the local school district, meeting with the Governor as it relates to prisoners and voting rights, and hosting events in cooperation with the Ames Public Library.

June 15-30 recipient, Wheatsfield will match donations made during this period up to $1000.

1306, 2020

Case Orders Resume

June 13th, 2020|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Case Orders

We suspended case orders for customers back in March when the pandemic hit and put immense pressure on the food supply and distribution system. We are ready to resume case orders again, but with some changes.

We will resume taking case orders beginning June 12 for pickup starting June 26. Ordering via the website form and email is preferred. Orders must be placed by Thursdays at noon, and will be available for pick up on Thursday of the following week. We will only be ordering case pre-orders once a week at this time. We will notify you on Wednesdays if your order was available or if it was out of stock. However, we will need time to process orders so please wait until Thursday to pick up your items.  If your item was out of stock you are free to reorder it, but we will not be automatically reordering any items due to many of the out of stock issues being long term.

The supply chain is still strained. Staple items are still hard to get and we continue to experience large out of stock issues from our distributors. No preorders for toilet paper or paper towels will be accepted due to the limited availability we are still experiencing. There may be other items we also cannot preorder as we move forward.

Our previous rules for no discounts on cow’s milk, diapers, and Co-op Basics items still apply.

We know many of you are anxiously waiting to place your case orders. Please be patient as we resume and remember that our priority is to fill the shelves in the store before fulfilling special orders. Let us know if you have any questions. Thank you for your cooperation!

Please submit your case order through our website at or via email at [email protected].