Saturday, September 24, 2011

Get Ready for Bulk Food Week


Celebrate Buying in Bulk During National Bulk Foods Week
October 16 - 22, 2011
Week provides shoppers opportunity to experience environmental and economic benefits of buying natural and organic bulk foods



Portland, Ore. – September 15, 2011 –The Bulk is Green Council (BIG), together with natural food stores and grocery stores across the country invite shoppers to celebrate the eco-friendly and affordable benefits of buying natural and organic foods in bulk during National Bulk Foods Week, October 16-22. To commemorate the special week, BIG is partnering with retailers nationwide to offer special incentives and discounts on natural and organic bulk foods to shoppers.

“Bulk food aisles have been around for decades, and the countless environmental and money-saving benefits are becoming more well-known among shoppers,” said Clint Landis, chief marketing officer for Frontier Natural Products Co-Op and a founding member of the Bulk is Green Council.  “Still, for those who have never shopped in bulk, National Bulk Foods Week provides the perfect opportunity to discover the environmental and economic benefits of doing so.”

Buying in bulk already offers significant cost savings, and during National Bulk Foods Week, stores throughout the country will offer further discounts on bulk foods. BIG encourages shoppers to check with their local grocer for their plans to participate in the festivities. Over 500 natural food stores and grocery stores across the country will be participating in this important event.

The Bulk is Green Council (BIG) is a national organization dedicated to increasing awareness of the environmental and economic benefits of shopping in bulk. Those benefits include:

·         Saving money -- Buying natural and organic foods in the bulk section of the grocery store offers an average savings of 30% and 50% versus packaged food.

·         Helping the environment -- Eliminating packaging reduces carbon footprints. Buying in bulk mitigates the amount of garbage that ends up in landfills and streamlines the transportation needed to deliver goods to market, helping to reduce CO2 emissions.

·         Reducing food waste -- Buying in bulk allows shoppers to make smarter decisions, by purchasing the exact amount of foods they need, as opposed to purchasing consumer packaged goods with a pre-determined amount that may not be used before its expiration date.

·         Flexibility to buy a pinch or a pound – Buying in bulk offers a broad selection of natural and organic products that can be purchased in the exact quantity desired. If shoppers need a large quantity of nuts for a holiday party or just a pinch of curry powder for a new recipe – bulk foods provide both options.
Governors of a number of states also have formally recognized the benefits of shopping the bulk foods aisle by proclaiming Oct. 16-22, 2011, National Bulk Foods Week in their states. So far, governors in the following states have issued such proclamations: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Maine, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont.

In the spirit of National Bulk Foods Week, BIG also offers the following tips for commemorating the week:

·         Host a bulk block party – Invite friends, family and neighbors over for a potluck and ask that they only bring snacks purchased in – or dishes made from foods purchased in – the bulk foods aisle. See BIG’s YouTube video series that shows how to prepare an entire meal made with ingredients solely from the bulk foods aisle.

·         Create a natural pantry - Green your pantry by discarding pre-packaged food in boxes, plastic tubs and cans.  Invest in glass storage containers, stainless steel jars or reuse mason jars to store bulk foods instead. Not only will this reduce the carbon footprint by eliminating the extra packaging that comes with pre-packaged foods, but it also will add colorful flair to your pantry.
·         Make homemade nutritious snacks – Looking for nutrient-rich snacks on the run? Homemade granolas or trail mixes are healthy snacks that can be made-ahead using ingredients found in the bulk foods aisle and that require no cooking. In addition, they travel well and are a perfect snack to pack in a child’s lunch box or office desk drawer.
·         Experiment with new foods – There are limitless culinary options that can be found in the bulk foods aisle. Try a couple of new organic selections to expand your palate, with a recipe such as couscous with seasonal vegetables, or quinoa with black beans. Sprinkle one of nature’s popular super foods, chia seed, which also can be found in bulk, on top of your nutritious meal. The bulk section is a great place to be creative and experiment.
For more information about the benefits of buying in bulk, please visit www.bulkisgreen.org.
ABOUT BULK IS GREEN COUNCIL
The Bulk is Green Council is an organization dedicated to increasing consumer, retailer and grocer awareness of the environmental and economic benefits of buying natural and organic in bulk. Founded in 2008, the council serves as a research and advocacy group, conducting and publishing studies on industry trends and offering educational tools and resources online. The board includes industry leaders Frontier Natural Products Co-Op, Hain Celestial, Lundberg Family Farms, SunRidge Farms and Trade Fixtures. Additional information is available at BulkisGreen.org.

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