February – March events

We’re opening the doors to 2014 on Tuesday Feb 25, the first day of Orientation Week. Come say ‘I missed you so much’ while stuffing your mouth with pie or roll. We’ll be welcoming your merry spirits 11am-3pm all O-Week long. Regular opening hours and lunch plates can wait til March.
You know
you can tease.
We’re stalling
in a good way
in a public way.

Our O-Week stalls need helpers to enthuse and amuse the lunching young ‘uns of Union House. Fancy yrself a food tease? Rep for us on Tue Feb 25 or Thu Feb 27 and we’ll trade you lunch. Lecture bash in week one and something magic will happen.


TALK: Building Community Resilience in the Sharing Economy
Community-supported enterprise + cooperatives + local investing + social enterprise + local currencies + micro-enterprise + sharing…. these all add up to local, resilient economies. But it can be difficult to picture how we’ll get there. The more our economies falter, the more we feel stuck – stuck in jobs we don’t like, stuck buying cheap unsustainable products, stuck patronising the same old huge corporations, stuck in traffic…. How do we get from stuck economies to resilient sharing economies? With the help of lively cartoon images, attorney and Executive Director of the SustainableEconomies Law Center, Janelle Orsi, will help us visualise some of the next critical steps and how a new sharing economy can actually work.
When: 6-7:30pm, Thu Feb 13
Where: Room 109, Melbourne Law School, 185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Cost: FREE (registration required)
ACTION: ValenTarkine’s Day
February 14 is ValenTarkine’s Day, a day when all Australians can share their love for Tasmania’s Tarkine – one of our most beautiful and most threatened regions. The Wilderness Society will be sending a message across Australia, to let the government and mining companies know that this ancient rainforest wilderness and its river veins need to be protected from mining exploitation.
When: ValenTarkine’s Day, 12-2pm, Fri Feb 14
Where: cnr of Bourke & Elizabeth Streets, Melbourne CBD
TALK: Steve Marsh Against Monsanto’s GM Canola
Steve Marsh is an Australian farmer who lost his organic certification on most of his land after it was contaminated by Monsanto’s genetically modified (GM) canola. The GM licence agreements indemnify Monsanto and thus Steve had no choice but to sue his neighbour to protect his livelihood. The trial is scheduled to start on February 10 in WA Supreme Court. It is a landmark case.
When: 4-5pm, Fri Feb 14
Where: Under the Gum, Birrarung Marr
Cost: FREE

TALK: Perma-nomics: Can the 12 Principles of Permaculture be Paraphrased into a New Economics? 
Today’s ‘divide and conquer’ system needs transplanting into a flexible, integrative economy that’s low on waste and high on positive feedback loops.
For a permanent culture to flourish, the process of buying and carving up communities for the highest profit must be curbed. This will help slow the growth-at-all costs mantra. Valuing and using our resources sustainably can deliver the efficiency of conservative dreams whilst equity is encouraged. Join Real Estate 4 Ransom producer Karl Fitzgerald for an entertaining look at how cities of the future can harness humanity’s energy to change for the better.
When: 5-6pm, Fri Feb 14
Where: Under the Gum, Birrarung Marr
Cost: FREE

WORKSHOP: Velo Cycles Bike Maintenance
Interested in basic bike maintenance? The team at Velo Cycles are running free bike maintenance classes for the duration of the Treadlie Bike Hub. These will be small group classes, a maximum of eight, so while they are free it is essential that you register to make sure you have a place. They’ll fill up quickly so register now!
When: 6pm, Fri Feb 14, 11am and 4pm, Sat Feb 15, and 11am and 2pm, Sun Feb 16
Where: Velo Cycles Marquee at Treadlie Bike Hub, Birrarung Marr
Cost: FREE (registration required)

RALLY: Stop Naphine’s Silencing Act
Premier Napthine is trying to silence Victorians. Napthine’s Silencing Act 1) Removes protections for peaceful assembly 2) Up to two years imprisonment for persons returning to a banned protest or picket 3) Police and PSO discretion to ‘move on’ protests. Napthine has gone too far. Speak up Victoria, while you still can. Sign and share the petition.
When: 10am Tue Feb 18
Where: Victorian Trades Hall Concil, 54 Victoria St, Carlton South

FILM: Growing Cities + Growing Food Project
The Transitions Film Festival returns to Cinema Nova this February, with an inspiring program of world-changing documentaries. Growing Cities is a documentary film that examines the role of urban farming in America and asks how much power it has to revitalize our cities and change the way we eat. Growing Food Project is a 15min documentary exploring Melbourne’s local food movement and community food projects. The film explores grass-roots initiatives aiming to re-localise our food system and offer connections to our food — where it comes from, how we eat it, who we share it with, and how we waste it.
When: 6.30pm Wed Feb 19
Where: Cinema Nova, 380 Lygon St, Carlton
Cost: $15/$19

COURSE: VEG Green Business Incubator
Join Dan Palmer, co-director (alongside Adam Grubb) of Very Edible Gardens for a weekend workshop focusing on all the bases that need to be covered to create a thriving green businessdoing good stuff for the planet while creating meaningful livelihoods. Dan has more ideas for what he considers viable small green businesses than he will ever have time to pursue and as part of the workshop will share these. So even if you don’t have your idea yet but want to get off the gerbil wheel and have a crack at your own gig be careful in attending – you might just leave with your future business idea under your arm!
When: 10am-4pm, Sat, Feb 15 & 22
Where: Castlemaine
Cost: $200

TALK: 3000Acres: Unlocking Productive Land Across Our City
3000Acres was the recent winner of the VicHealth SEED Challenge. Their project will unlock underutilised land for community use and get more people growing more food in more places across Melbourne. 3000Acres have a temporary vacant development site in Fitzroy that is a hub for learning, experimenting, eating and connecting with food, food production and each other. This event will celebrate the environmental and health benefits of fresh food through art, fashion, food and people.
When: 3-5pm, Sat Feb 15
Where: 3000Acres Hub, rear of 9-11 Smith St, enter via 6 Little Smith Street, Fitzroy
Cost: FREE

TALK: Beyond the Supermarket: Open Food Network Showcase
In this interactive session, Kirsten Larsen and Serenity Hill will demo the Open Food Network – an online marketplace for local food. Showcasing food hubs and farmers from across the State, we’ll provide an opportunity to connect with what’s happening in your region. Hear from special guests: Nick Ray (Ethical Consumer Group); Darren Sharp (Shareable.net); Justin Walsh (Trentham Food Hub); Tammi Jonas (Jonai Farms); and Angie Orrego (Local Organics).
When: 3:30-5pm, Sat Feb 15
Where: The Green House, Birrarung Marr
Cost: FREE (register here)

TALK: Living Simply in the City 
Keeping chooks, saving water, growing food and reducing energy use – simple living sounds easy in theory, but how do you put it into practice when you live and work in a large city? How do you resist social and culture pressures to buy, buy, buy? And do inner city dwellers have higher or lower environmental footprints than their regional counterparts? Greg Foyster, author of the book Changing Gears, chairs this panel featuring Gavin Webber (greeningofgavin.com), Kat Lavers (Cultivating Community) and Mike Hill (WestWyck).
When: 5-6pm, Sat Feb 15
Where: Under the Gum, Birrarung Marr
Cost: FREE

COURSE: Telopea Mountain Permaculture Design Course
This ‘beyond permaculture design course (PDC)’ is 147 hours dual certification. The course not only delivers and expands upon the core subjects of 72 hours PDCs but also teaches real skills such as making hot compost, no-dig & wicking beds, grafting fruit tree and microbusiness. Our strengths are in soils (building and understanding them), fruit trees of many kinds, (growing, caring and producing these) and animals (most think is only about chooks & worms, we have experience with llamas, alpacas, cows, goats, sheep, geese and ducks.
When: courses begins Tue Feb 18 or Thu Mar 13
Where: Emerald Community House and Telopea Mountain in Monbulk
Cost: $495

TALK: Collaborative Consumption: Using the Internet to Share
An Interactive talk about how to create new ways of sharing in order to live a more sustainable life. The internet enables us to connect with each other like never before, from getting a free bike on freecycle, to renting a communal car, or sleeping on a randoms couch when traveling. The internet is exploding with a million new ways to share a receive services. Come on down and hear from people involved in Australia’s most innovative digital projects that are connecting people for a better world. Guest speakers will be Kim Shore (Streetbank Australia), Lisa Fox (Open Shed) and local favourite Nick Carson (Wikipedia editor/digital activist).
When: 6-8.30pm Wed Feb 19
Where: Friends of the Earth Food Co-op, 312 Smith St, Collingwood

WORKSHOP: Summer Harvest Preserving Workshop
Come and join Wendy and Kate from The Urban Pear to preserve your summer harvest of fruit and veggies. Preserve some fruit, make some jam, pickle some veg, ferment some water kefir…the perfect summer beverage. All jars and fermenting products will be supplied.
When: 1.30-4.30pm, Sat Feb 22
Where: CERES Community Kitchen, cnr Steward St & Roberts St, Brunswick East
Cost: $50
TALK: Bees for Sustainable Food
Did you know that over 60% of our food is produced through pollination by bees? We cannot have sustainable food production without bees and this is certainly the case for home and community gardens. At our educational apiary you will watch bees in action and discover how you can help them. See inside a beehive… taste honeys … chat with beekeepers … learn about beekeeping and bee friendly gardens. Or take a virtual visit.
When: 10.30am-3.30pm, Sun Feb 23
Where: Collingwood Childrens’ Farm Apiary, 18 St Heliers St, Abbotsford
Cost: FREE

WORKSHOP: Cook and Dry Food with the Sun
Join Doing It Ourselves for a workshop on solar dehydrator and ovens! We will be building one of each together, with Elin and Ari as facilitators, and talking about these INCREDIBLY simple and appropriate technologies for decreasing our daily footprint and creating tasty goodness! If you want to construct your own solar dryer contact Elin regarding materials. Feel free to bring a snack to share, or something to throw into the lunch pot.
When: 12-5pm Sun Feb 23
Where: Preston, contact Elin for the address
Cost: FREE (RSVP to Ari)

ACTION: Critical Mass

Critical Mass has brought cyclists together every month for over twenty years to reclaim the streets to make them safer for cyclists and pedestrians. The influence of the movement has been the creation of on-road bike paths, greater awareness of pedestrians and cyclists in transport mode priority and an increase in the popularity of everyday cycling culture. Typically held on the last Friday of every month, its purpose is not usually formalised beyond the direct action of meeting at a set location and time and traveling as a group through city or town streets on bikes. Involve yrselfs! Bring music! Invite your friends! Get creative! Make a poster! Make some stickers!
When: 5.30-7pm Fri Feb 28
Where: leaving from State Library of Victoria, 328 Swanston St, Melbourne CBD
COURSE: Self-Sufficiency and Community Living Workshop Weekend
This is a unique program that allows participants to learn 8 new skills over one weekend from a variety of self-sufficiency categories whilst camping out and experiencing community living at one of our farm or outback locations. We invite eight great teachers to come along and pass on their specialty skills and/or knowledge in a two hour session each. Some classes will be very high energy, hands-on and practical and others will be at a slow pace, relaxed and engaging, and there will also be plenty of time for socialise and have a great time with the other participants. It’s like a mixture of TED talks, ConFest skill-shares, Scouts, practical classes and all round communal good times.
When: Fri Feb 28 – Mon Mar 3
Where: a Creative Collectives farmhouse location in beautiful Lara, VIC. 50mins from Melb, 20mins from Geelong. With train access.
Cost: $150

COURSE: Permaculture Design Certificate
Join Tamara Griffiths (Moonrise Permaculture) and Taj Scicluna (The Perma Pixie) on a journey to become more conscious citizens through Permaculture Design. This 72hr Permaculture Design Course is an internationally recognized qualification that will introduce such topics as: Permaculture Ethics and Principles, Soil, Methods of Design, Plants, Forests, Natural Building, Social Systems and Community, Animal Systems, Water, Earthworks and even some specialized topics such as Wildfoods and Food Forests.
When: course begins Wed Mar 5
Where: Dandenong Ranges
Cost: $500/$700 (to enrol, email the Perma Pixie 
or call 0450375528)


Workshops at the food co-op 2014

Hey there skills junkie! Want to learn some new tricks? Add a recipe to your repertoire? Or run a workshop yourself?

Use this poll to help us fix a calendar of workshops for next semester.

We’ll try for all of them to be free, though some may require a small donation to cover materials or expert speakers. That stuff will be confirmed later. If you want to run a workshop, add your idea to the “other” box, and email us with more details.

<3, your food co-op


polldaddy poll="7550802"


Acoustic Afternoons at the Co-op!

Thanks to the sirenous ukulele fingersmithings of a certain co-op babe, we’re feeling inspired to host acoustic afternoons here, asap.

THIS WEDNESDAY -Oct 16- bring your lovely selves and your acoustic instruments* to the co-op, where we’ll have a running-list and a comfy stool. Depending on how many tunesters show up, you might play two songs or ten. You’ll get volunteer discount (that’s 20%) on any lunch/chai you want, not to mention a neato opportunity to practice your latest cover of The Formidable Vegetable Sound System or woo the vegan of your dreams.


*no djembes.




Discounts, discounts, all this week!* 20% off all of our bulk food – that’s grains, sugars, salt, spices, cleaning products, noodles, seaweed, nuts, seeds, dried fruits, sweets, and more! PLUZ we have 50% off flours and teas! Have you tried passionflower before? You should try passion flower.

Wondering exactly which flours and teas we have? Beyond buckwheat, more than mugwort?

Click on the menu link to our Bulk foods price list for all the answers.

Speaking of answers, did you know that reading tarot cards or otherwise telling the future is not allowed as a form of busking in Melbs? It’s true.


Acoustic afternoons at the co-op

Thanks to the sirenous ukulele fingersmithings of a certain co-op babe, we’re feeling inspired to host acoustic afternoons here, asap.

THIS WEDNESDAY -Oct 16-  bring your lovely selves and your acoustic instruments* to the co-op, where we’ll have a running-list and a comfy stool. Depending on how many tunesters show up, you might play two songs or ten. Think of this as volunteer time, not to mention a neato opportunity to practice your latest cover of The Formidable Vegetable Sound System or woo the vegan of your dreams.


*no djembes.


Bulk Food Update

To those lovely 75 people who participted in the Bulk Food Survey, thankyou. We have your results safe and sound. Unfortunately the site we were using has fallen victim to a hack, and is unlikely to be any further use to us before semester begins (which is when we want to start acting on the results of the survey).
If you hadn’t gotten around to filling out the survey, we still want to know what you think! We want to know what you want to buy, and how much, and when. Beans? Nuts? Cleaning products? Tea? Other supplies?
Do you have a strong preference for the co-op to only stock vegan food, or would you (for example) like to be able to order free-range eggs with your vegie box?
Most importantly: some of our stock is Australian origin, some is organic, some is both and some is neither. Because we like to encourage sustainable, ethical food, we cost the stock accordingly; we multiply the wholesale cost by different amounts depending on these factors: 1.8 if neither organic nor Australian, 1.6 if one of Australian and organic, 1.4 if both.
How do you feel about that?

Comment on this post to let us know, or even better, come along to a collective meeting (the date of the next one will be in the newsletter)…