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Blog

  • Board Nominations Now Accepted

    Hard to believe a year has passed since our first board elections! In preparation for the October 5 membership meeting & election, nominations are now being accepted for two three-year terms on the Bethlehem Food Co-Op board of directors. Nominations are accepted through August 28.

  • Annual Picnic July 26

    The Bethlehem Food Co-op will hold its annual summer picnic on Sunday, July 26 from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Monocacy Park on Illicks Mill Road in Bethlehem. The event is free and open to the general public.

  • CCMA 2015: Board Chair's Reflection

    SantiagoKathy.jpgOne of the perks of being a Bethlehem Food Co-op board member is the opportunity to help guide the direction of our Co-op, and another is the opportunity to participate in the training about cooperative enterprise. One of the best training opportunities we have is attending the CCMA (Consumer Cooperative Management Association) conference.

  • CCMA 2015: A Member's Reflection

    Santiago and KathyFrom June 11-13, I had the honor attending the 2015 Consumer Co-operative Management Association (CCMA) conference held in Boise, Idaho, along with Santiago Rivera, Board Chair. The Howard Bowers Fund offers scholarships to the conference for member-owners wanting to expand their knowledge of co-operative businesses. I am grateful to the fund, CCMA and the Bethlehem Food Co-operative for invited me to attend with the scholarship they obtained.

     

  • Galen Glen

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    Just a short, majestic drive from Allentown and Bethlehem lies one of the most beautiful places in the Lehigh Valley: the vineyards at Galen Glen’s winery. The rolling hills, beautiful farmlands, and untouched woods in Lehigh, Berks, and Schuylkill Counties make you feel like you’re in another country, in another time. People pay thousands of dollars to see these landscapes, but we’re lucky enough to experience them for the price of a few gallons of gas. 

    Galen Glen is near home, and that is exactly how you feel when you spend some time in their tasting room. The staff is incredibly inviting, headed by their tasting room manager Kathy. It’s also not uncommon to see owners Sarah and Galen pouring their wine for quests while they’re not overseeing the well-kept fields. I often bring out-of-town friends here because I know they will be breath taken, and they are every time. 

    I suppose I should also mention that their wine is fantastic. Not just fantastic, its world class. If you haven’t tried their wine yet, you’re missing out. They have something for everyone: light refreshing whites, dry complex reds, and more. They have mastered the art and science of viticulture, right here in the Valley.

    Don’t take my word for it. Here’s a list of all the awards this duo has won:

    2 gold medals at the 2015 Finger Lakes International, a Double Gold and Best of Class at the 2014 International Women's, Best Woman Winemaker at the 2014 Women's International, and 3 golds at the 2014 Riverside International, that's just to name a few.

    I recently had the chance to ask Sarah a few questions, and she was gracious enough to provide some really thoughtful and insightful remarks. See the questions and answers below, and then get out to the vineyard!

    Of all the places in the world, you chose the Lehigh Valley Region. Why did you decide to run your business here?

    Our magnificent property is in Galen’s family for over 200 years. We lived away from our farm for several years, working in corporate jobs. But Galen always felt an undeniable urge to return home to his land. He is a 6th generation farmer and was destined to be a winegrower. We are extremely proud to use the federally designated AVA (American Viticultural Area), Lehigh Valley, on our estate wines.

     

    What drew you towards operating a vineyard and winery, as opposed to other business and agricultural models? 

    We looked at numerous types of farming, from walnut trees (too long) to hunting grounds (too noisy) to hand crops (too shaley). Trips to Germany and wine from Hawaii via Galen's best friend collided to ultimately inspire us. Galen brought with him years of experience as a mechanical engineer combined with a natural ability to grow things from his youth. Sarah worked as a chemist, packaging liquid drugs, and transitioned to a new product, wine.

     

    What is your customers’ favorite wine?

    While there really isn’t a customer favorite wine per se, there is a huge customer wine trend - White wines & chillable reds in spring and summer and Red wines in fall and winter.

     

    What is YOUR favorite wine? 

    Our exquisite aromatic white wines – Grüner Veltliner, Gewürztraminer and Riesling.

     

    What is one thing you’d like people to know about your business? (Could be about your operations, unseen challenges you face, work you do in the community, etc) 

    We farm wine. About 90% of our wine is grown on our land, which is not common for Pennsylvania wineries. This requires a tremendously dedicated vineyard crew and tasting room staff to help us grow, sell and educate consumers about our wines. We encourage guests to take our walking vineyard and winery tour for an appreciation of the talent required to operate a farm winery.

     

    Photo credit: Eden Troxell Photography

  • Bethlehem Food Co-Op Announces Member Recruitment Hire

    The Bethlehem Food Co-op announced today the hiring of business partners Carol Ritter and Laurel Blair Mikovits of CarolTalks to handle its membership recruitment needs as the organization continues its goal of opening a store in the Christmas City.

  • Local Food: The People's Kitchen

    The People's KitchenOne of the things we like to do here at the Bethlehem Food Co-Op is honor and recognize people that strengthen our local food economy. Billy Gruenewald certainly fits this category. He recently opened his breakfast and lunch spot, dubbed the People’s Kitchen, and it’s rapidly becoming a favorite among local diners. Located at the corner of Linden and E. North Streets, The People’s Kitchen provides high-quality, affordable options outside of the downtown area and in a densely-populated neighborhood.

  • Annual Craft Fair

    The Bethlehem Food Co-op will hold its 2nd Annual Craft Fair on Saturday, April 18 from 11am–4pm at Christ Church UCC, 75 E. Market Street, Bethlehem. The event is free and open to the public.

  • Budweiser's Super Bowl Commercial and What it Means

    Yesterday was Super Bowl Monday, the national demi-holiday celebrated in office break rooms throughout the nation. It’s marked by the tradition of criticizing the advertisements we willingly subjected ourselves to the night before. Nationwide’s horrific ad was king of the hill when it came to yesterday’s water-cooler talk. But I want to talk about Budweiser’s controversial commercial where they praise their “hard” method of brewing beer.

    Budweiser’s let’s-just-drink-beer-because-you’re-not-supposed-to-think-about-it Super Bowl ad is a true puzzle. The ad lambasts craft breweries that feature “Pumpkin Peach Ales,” but a quick Google search will show you that Budweiser just recently acquired Elysian breweries, one of the few craft breweries that actually do feature a Pumpkin Peach Ale. It could be a hidden nod of recognition to their own hypocrisy here, or a huge oversight. Either way, as the creator of the “Lime-A-Rita,” a margarita-flavored malt beverage, can Budweiser really pass judgement on odd-flavored beers?

  • We're Hiring!

    The Bethlehem Food Co-Op is seeking a part time Member Recruitment Coordinator who is passionate about local food, healthy eating, community-building, and the cooperative business model.  The individual hired will be an independent contractor for the Bethlehem Food Co-Op.

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