Securing Grants for NM Producers

Securing Grants for NM Producers

In 2016, La Montañita secured more than $330,000 in USDA grants for New Mexico farms and ranches! The La Montañita Co-op Distribution Center’s value chain team wrote these grants for two local food producers in order to help strengthen their businesses, ensuring their long term viability and continued contributions to the New Mexico economy.

With these grants, Beneficial Eggs and The Old Windmill Dairy will be able to increase both their production capacity and sales of their eggs and cheeses, respectively. Because Beneficial Eggs is a shared brand that multiple New Mexico egg producers use, these grants are supporting a number of different NM producers.

Grant writing is one of the many value chain services that La Montañita provides to local farms and ranches.  According to the USDA, the hallmarks of food value chains are “transparency, working together, and providing fair returns to all partners under shared environmental or social values.”  These values are embodied in La Montañita’s Ends, and are what guide how the co-op conducts its daily business with local food producers.

La Montañita’s Co-op Distribution Center is home to a value chain team that provides a whole host of services to local growers, supporting these Ends of environmental stewardship, transparency, working together, and fair returns.  These services include matching producers with scale-appropriate market opportunities; providing technical assistance around production, marketing, food safety, and other aspects of food businesses; advocacy around farm-related policy, both local and national; securing funding and resources for growers; and testing new business models that provide greater returns for businesses along La Montañita’s entire supply chain.

This is all to say, value chain work often extends beyond the day-to-day transactions between a buyer and seller.  For example, some of La Montañita’s value chain services only benefit the co-op indirectly, including our writing grants for New Mexico farms and ranches.  The USDA’s “Value Added Producer Grant” is one such funding opportunity, and it’s through the VAPG grant program that La Montañita recently secured the $330,000 for local producers.

These VAPG grants will provide funding to support the marketing efforts of Beneficial Eggs and The Old Windmill Dairy, and will be awarded in their entirety to the beneficiaries.  As a result of these VAPG grants, Beneficial Eggs and Old Windmill Dairy will be able to increase both their production capacity as well as their gross sales.  The grants will also support three new, full-time, good paying jobs for New Mexico’s economy.

Have questions about these grants, or want to learn more about our work with local producers? Contact our Value Chain Specialist:

Your Perfect Holiday Turkey


They’re here! Embudo Valley Organics’ fresh, local and organic turkeys are available this year for only $3.99/lb. We also have a great selection of Mary’s turkeys: Mary’s Organic turkeys are $3.99/lb, and Mary’s Non-GMO turkeys are $2.69/lb.

Order yours today by calling your favorite Co-op location, or come on in and order in person:

Embudo Valley Organics’ turkeys are always outside in the fields and sunshine, grazed in open irrigated pastures, fed only certified organic grains, and are cared for and harvested by hand to ensure the highest quality product in the most humane manner. This small, local farm produces the nation’s first Certified Organic Turkeys with no artificial ingredients, from the ground up!

Mary’s turkeys are free-range, fed a vegetarian diet, and are raised in California. If you have any questions about our turkey options before you place your order, just give us a call at one of the phone numbers above.

Need a vegan- and vegetarian-friendly option, or want to make Thanksgiving easier by having our professional chefs handle your side dishes? Check out our holiday catering options to see how we can help complete your perfect Thanksgiving dinner.

2016 Board Election Now Closed

Board of Directors elections have now closed. Thanks to all member-owners who exercised their democratic member control and voted in this year’s Board elections (Nov. 1 – Nov. 14).

This year we had four seats open on the Board and twelve candidates running for those seats. The three candidates who received the most votes will each serve three-year terms on the Board, and the candidate with the fourth most votes will serve a one-year term in a seat left open by a previous Board member stepping down.

Paper ballots postmarked Nov. 1 – Nov. 14 have all been counted, so election results are now finalized. During the December Board meeting, our current Board will approve the election results and seat the four Board candidates who received the most votes.

2016 Board Election Results:

Ian Colburn – 164
Gina Dennis – 1,202
James Glover – 194
Marissa Joe – 1,044
Chad Jones – 903
John Kwait – 533
Ariana Marchello – 550
Silda Mason – 128
Carlos Pantera – 237
Elise Wheeler – 887
Courtney White – 592
Django Zeaman – 250


Based on these results, Gina Dennis, Marissa Joe and Chad Jones will be seated on the La Montañita Co-op Board of Directors for three-year terms beginning in 2017, and Elise Wheeler will be seated on the Board for a one-year term.


Annual Owner Gathering Videos

La Montañita Co-op’s Annual Owner Gathering was held on October 22 in Albuquerque, and we knew that not everyone who wanted to attend was able to.

For those of you who missed it, we’ve uploaded an unedited video of the first portion of the meeting, including remarks from the Board, our General Manager, member-owners, and 2016 Board candidates.

We’ve also uploaded a video of special guest speaker Ted Howard’s talk on building community wealth through the cooperative model. As you’ll see, multiple cameras were used to record this talk, so shots from different angles were edited together to create the complete video of our special guest’s talk.

Here are links to both videos:

Annual Owner Gathering, Part 1 – Remarks from the Board, our General Manager, member-owners, and Board candidates: Click here to watch

Annual Owner Gathering, Part 2 – Special Guest Speaker Ted Howard on building community wealth through the cooperative model: Click here to watch


If you have a question you would have liked to ask at the Annual Owner Gathering, please let us know! You can always reach us through our contact form here: Contact Us

Member-Owner Town Hall Videos

Member-Owner Town Hall Meetings were held recently in ABQ and Santa Fe, but we knew that not everyone who wanted to attend was able to. If you were unable to attend and would like to watch unedited videos of the meetings, we’ve uploaded recordings of both for you here in their entirety:

Albuquerque, October 5: Click here to watch

Santa Fe, October 6: Click here to watch

If you have a question you would have liked to ask at the Town Hall, please let us know! You can always reach us through our contact form here: Contact Us

The Party Continues

The Party Continues on Albuquerque’s Westside, 3601 Old Airport Ave. We’re bringing you a cornucopia of savings at La Montañita Co-op’s Westside location. You’ll find incredible savings store-wide, exclusive Sampling with Sylvanna featuring items on sale and Rockin’ events each week. We can’t wait to see you at the Westside!

Fresh Sales

Great savings on organic produce, available to all our customers. New Fresh Sales are available every Wednesday — see what terrific organic produce is on sale now!

Have a Field Day Every Day!

Haven’t tried a Field Day product, yet? It’s La Montañita’s organic, natural and GMO-free value-product line.

As part of our Co+op Basics special-pricing program (look for the purple and white signs), we carry over 80 Field Day lines at everyday low prices store-wide at all your neighborhood La Montañita locations.

Stop by today, and pick up some Field Day that’s designed to fit YOUR budget.

To learn more about Field Day and their extensive selection of products, visit their website:

Marshall Kovitz

Our beloved founding owner and Board Member passed away peacefully on Saturday, March 26. We are deeply indebted to Marshall for his unwavering guidance, loyalty and dedication to La Montañita for the past 40 years in all aspects of the Co-op, especially with governance issues. Marshall truly embodied the cooperative spirit and was an inspiration to us all. He will be greatly missed.