Monadnock Food Co-op Goes 100% Renewable for 2018

co-op-staff-celebrating-solar-panels-768x776In addition to the Community Supported Solar array on their roof, a recent LED lighting retrofit, and use of “Polar Power” to pump cold outside air into their coolers, Monadnock Food Co-op also signed a contract with Constellation New Energy to source additional electricity from renewable sources for the 2018 calendar year, and beyond.

“We recognize that Climate Change is a serious threat to our suppliers, both worldwide and at home. From the floods and landslides that plagued organic banana farmers in Peru this spring, to the wildfires affecting California vineyards, and the drought that hit our state’s dairy farmers especially hard last year, the increasingly volatile climate that affects our global community is something our cooperative strives to avoid,” said Michael Faber, General Manager of Monadnock Food Co-op. “I am so proud that despite almost doubling our staff and sales since opening five years ago, we have been able to reduce our overall energy consumption over the past two years. We are also excited to be able to support the generation of wind energy to cover the electricity that is necessary to power our store.”

The Co-op’s agreement with Constellation New Energy allows the Co-op to buy Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) from wind power for 100% of their estimated electricity usage beyond that produced by the rooftop solar array. For every unit of renewable electricity generated through wind energy technology, an equivalent amount of RECs is produced. The purchase of RECs supports renewable wind electricity generation and reduces conventional electricity generation in the region.

“As renewable energy becomes increasingly more price-competitive, we hope many other businesses in our community will join our co-op in investing in initiatives like the Community Supported Solar Project with Monadnock Sustainability Network, and in sourcing renewable power to meet their needs,” said Emerald Levick, Marketing Manager for Monadnock Food Co-op. “Working for the safety, security, and resilience of our community in the face of Climate Change will take every one of us, contributing in every way we can.”

More about sustainability efforts at Monadnock Food Co-op.

Monadnock Food Co-op Farm Fund

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2018 Grant Cycle Request for Proposal Applications are due February 1, 2018.

You can find the Request for Proposals HERE, then you can apply by filling out the word doc application here and or the PDF version here.

Funds can be used for a range of needs including the purchase of equipment or infrastructure, packaging and labeling design needs, and technical assistance. Eligible applicants include farms in Cheshire County and abutting NH towns who would like to develop or expand their production for wholesale markets, including the Monadnock Food Co-op and Monadnock Menus.

Learn more about the Co-op’s Farm Fund.

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The Crowd Expands: Alstead, Jaffrey and Peterborough Join The Local Crowd Monadnock

In 2017, The Local Crowd (TLC) Monadnock — a locally based crowdfunding platform — supported campaigns based in Keene, Chesterfield, Hinsdale, Swanzey and Winchester.  In the New Year, we’re excited to announce that we’re expanding into Alstead, Jaffrey and Peterborough, too!  What does that mean to you?  It means that if you have a great idea — one that strengthens your local economy and community — and live in one of these eight towns, you can apply to launch a crowdfunding campaign with TLC Monadnock.

If you’ve heard of Kickstarter and Indiegogo, you might understand how crowdfunding works.  However, TLC Monadnock is different from other crowdfunding platforms.  It’s designed specifically for rural communities.  Also, you’re not alone when you launch a campaign with TLC Monadnock — we provide education, support and hyper-local tools to connect local businesses, organizations and community groups with the capital they need to thrive.

These differences recently earned us a Crowdfundie Award presented at the Global Crowdfunding Conference in Las Vegas. This award recognizes outstanding contributions to the crowdfunding industry.  People are beginning to notice what our community is doing to inspire more local investing!

2017 Recap

Since we launched in March, four crowdfunding campaigns have collectively raised $34,946 from over 200 individuals.  Our most recent campaign, the Bicycle Mayor of Keene, met its $1,300 goal just five days after publicly launching.  Tiffany Mannion, the inaugural Bicycle Mayor of Keene will focus on three areas during her two year term: education, connection and creation.  TLC Monadnock funded her first goal, to create an online hub that connects our community of riders to each other.  Connect with her at bicyclemayorofkeene.com.

Two TLC Monadnock campaigns focused on sustainable agriculture: Archway Farm’s Farm to Table on Wheels project and Stonewall Farm’s Barn Raising project.  Archway Farm bought a Sausage Cart and traveled to various community events this summer, introducing their pasture-raised pork and other local products to new people throughout our region.  Stonewall Farm plans to invest their funds in a new barn for their small animals and offer more space for the farm’s education programs.

Our third campaign, the Monadnock Placemaker project, focused on independent retail and the power of online tools to inspire more of us to spend our dollars at locally owned businesses.  Funds from this campaign will go into launching a local rewards program this winter.  Learn more about all four projects.

Three new campaigns are now in the development stage: Safe Streets project from the Hinsdale Beautification Committee, Moving Outdoors project from the Montessori Schoolhouse of Cheshire County and Chesterfield Community Supported Solar project from the Monadnock Sustainability Network.

Once these new crowdfunding campaigns launch, you can join with your friends and neighbors to support the campaigns that inspire you — by giving any amount of money you feel able and moved to give (from $1 on up!).  Some campaigns provide rewards for your support — a thank you gift for funding their project.  Sign up for our e-newsletter to stay updated.  Just send us an email and we’ll add you to our contact list.

In Search of New Campaigns for 2018

So, now we turn to you and ask: Do you have a great idea that could use a lift? Will your project support community goals, while keeping to a budget of $10,000 or less? Are you, or is your business or organization, based in Alstead, Chesterfield, Hinsdale, Jaffrey, Keene, Peterborough, Swanzey or Winchester?  If yes, then please consider funding your project through The Local Crowd Monadnock.  We are accepting crowdfunding proposals until January 12, 2018.

Learn more about our current request for proposals.

Here’s an added incentive to submit a proposal now: TLC Monadnock will select one proposal to receive a free video, donated by 710 Main Films, to support their crowdfunding campaign.  Crowdfunding campaigns with pitch videos receive four times more funds than campaigns without a video.

TLC Monadnock is hosted by Monadnock Buy Local and supported by a leadership team that includes the Greater Keene Chamber of Commerce, Southwest Region Planning Commission, New Hampshire Small Business Development Center, Monadnock Buy Local, Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce and Monadnock Economic Development Corporation.  We’re looking for other economic development groups beyond Keene to join our leadership team.  Contact us today for more details at jen@monadnocklocal.org or 603-499-7950.

As our TLC Monadnock crowd expands, we hope you will join us.  We are collectively funding the things we want to see more of in our little corner of the world.

Winter Farmers’ Markets: Monadnock Region

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Farmers’ Market of Keene: Monadnock Waldorf School, 98 S. Lincoln St. Every Saturday, November through December; 2nd and 4th Saturday, January through March; Every Saturday in April, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. SNAP/EBT accepted. keenefarmersmarket@gmail.com, http://www.keenefarmersmarket.com/.

Peterborough Farmers’ Market: Peterborough Community Center, 25 Elm St., Weds. Oct.-Dec 20, 3– 5 p.m. Vegetables, flowers/plants, dairy, maple, baked goods, meat, crafts. 396-9136, peterboroughfarmersmarketnh@gmail.com, https://www.facebook.com/PeterboroughNHFarmersMarket.

Winchester Farmers’ Market on Main: Town Hall, 1 Richmond Rd., Sat., Nov. – May, 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Vegetables, maple, baked goods, meat, jams/jellies, eggs, Vegan foods, fudge, hand made soap, crafts. Live music, holiday card and cookie decorating, visits with Santa and more. SNAP/EBT accepted. 239-6361, winchesterfarmersmarket@gmail.com, www.winchesterfarmersmarketnh.com.

View New Hampshire Winter Farmers’ Markets (2017/2018 Season)

From the NH Dept. of Agriculture, Markets & Food

**Please contact market to verify products available**

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You’re Invited! MAST Annual Meeting January 11th

You’re invited!  The Monadnock Alliance for Sustainable Transportation Annual Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, January 11th from 5:00-6:30 p.m. at the HCS Conference Room located at 312 Marlboro Street in Keene, NH.  This event is an opportunity to:

  • Celebrate recent accomplishments in the region,
  • Learn about the MAST’s focus for the upcoming year, and
  • Connect with organizations and individuals working to implement sustainable transportation solutions in the Monadnock Region.

The program will begin with networking and light refreshments.  To register, click here.

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This year, the event will feature two guest speakers:

  • Phil Goff is a Senior Planning Associate with Alta Planning + Design.  He brings 18 years of urban design and pedestrian and bicycle facility planning experience to his work. Since 2009, he has managed Alta’s Cambridge office and has overseen planning and design projects throughout the Northeast. These projects include managing pedestrian and bicycle master planning projects in communities large and small, greenway corridor studies,  complete streets plans, streetscape design projects, and bike share system master plans.  His sincere passion for making cities and towns more lively, walkable, bike-friendly, and sustainable places represents a common theme in his work.
  • Tiffany Mannion is the Bicycle Mayor of Keene, New Hampshire and the first Bicycle Mayor in the United States. She is a LAB Certified Cycling Instructor and a passionate two-wheeled commuter and explorer. In the world of cycling and social media, she is perhaps better known as bellecycle. She has ridden over 5600 miles since 2016 in eight different countries. Her two-year term as Bicycle Mayor will focus on three community-wide goals established with the support of MAST: Education, Connection, and Creation.  She has been featured in Rails to Trails Magazine and was an Ibex Advocate in the spring of 2017.  Follow Tiffany online at bicyclemayorofkeene.com.

You will also learn about upcoming volunteer opportunities and ways to get involved.  Stay tuned for more details!

Registration

The MAST annual meeting is free to attend, however registration is required.  To register, click here.

Keene Runs on the Sun

On November 7th, the Monadnock Sustainability Project created an installation at the Hannah Grimes Center CONNECT 2017 event.  The installation represented our vision for Main Street in Keene:

Recognizing its dependence on energy sources from far away — along with its vulnerability to increasing flooding risks from a warming planet — the City of Keene, NH goes “all in” and embraces Community Supported Solar to build resilience and reduce carbon emissions.

The Community Supported Solar model creates solar business partnerships that retains tax, investment, energy and labor dollars in the community — while providing access to solar to nonprofits, municipal buildings and low & moderate income households.

We’re putting unproductive roofs on Main Street to work, harvesting energy from the sun right here in our community.

Learn more about this model: Community Supported Solar.

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Badger Honored as 2017 ‘Best For the World’ and ‘Best for the Environment’

Originally posted at Badger Balm

Badger was recognized as Best for the World, Overall and Best for Environment by the nonprofit B Lab. In order to be recognized, honorees must score in the top 10% of all businesses on the B Impact Assessment, the gold standard of corporate responsibility metrics. Badger scored in the top 10% of more than 2,100 Certified B Corporations across all categories for creating the most positive overall community impact, as well as positive environmental impact.