<h2>Our New Home!</h2> If anyone has been wondering where Danny has been lately, he's been working very hard with everyone to get our new warehouse and offices ready for us to move as soon as possible.&#160; We outgrew our current home about two months ago and so it has been a massive push to get the new place ready in record time.&#160; We're nearly there and have set a move date.&#160; We will close at our current location on Saturday April 28 and reopen at the new shop on Tuesday May 1.&#160; This is a month ahead of the original schedule! <strong>What does this mean for our members?</strong> <span style="text-decoration: underline;">For those of you on our delivery routes</span> - there will be no impact to your delivery schedule, times or routes.&#160; Our new location is only 10 blocks north from our current warehouse and so we expect no changes will be needed to accomodate any modifications in the schedule or routes. <span style="text-decoration: underline;">For those who pickup boxes at our shop</span> -&#160;you will need to start coming to our new location on May 1.&#160; Pickups will not be available between 1pm on April 28 and 9am on May 1.&#160; Our new shop will also have a small retail front so if you regularly pickup your box you will also be able to buy extra items and groceries from our warehouse at the same time. <strong>What does this mean for our producers?</strong> Our new location is three times the size of the current warehouse and has over one thousand square feet of cooler space.&#160; Many of our local producers will be able to deliver larger quantities of items to us&#160;each week, which means we will have better inventory and fewer shorts during the week.&#160; We will also be able to store more items over the winter for you in the expanded cooler space without having to resort to outdoor climate controlled 53-foot reefer trailers.&#160; Our new offices&#160;have improved facilities for our partners and we expect to be able to offer better services and planning capabilities to help with the seasonal cycle and crop schedules. <strong>What does this mean for our team members?</strong> The new facility has a block of windows in the warehouse which will offer natural, full spectrum light during working hours.&#160; We have also invested heavily in lighting, paint and space planning to give more room to work and a better work environment.&#160; The entire facility is climate controlled which means warmer winter shifts and cooler summer shifts for our staff.&#160; The new warehouse also has an indoor loading area for our vans.&#160; This means no more loading your boxes into the vans in the blizzard, freezing cold, pouring rain or scorching heat.&#160;&#160; The delivery vans will be driving into the loading area and loaded straight from the cooler. The new location also has larger, more spacious offices for our front-office and customer service teams.&#160; It has a full kitchen and a large, bright staff area for people to use during breaks.&#160; It is&#160;hard and physically demanding to work in our warehouse and drive our delivery vans,&#160;and we strongly believe that our team should have breaks away from work in a comfortable space. <strong>What does this mean for food quality and selection?</strong> When we first opened The Organic Box two years ago, our cooler was only 100 square feet.&#160; Soon, we expanded it to 200 square feet.&#160; Today, it is packed to the ceiling with food each week and we move a significant amount of fresh produce through a very confined space.&#160; Our new facility has a five times the cooler space.&#160; This will allow us to increase our inventory and will relieve some of the pressure on the existing infrastructure.&#160; This will mean better selection of fresh items, better freshness and better temperature controls.&#160; We also have a walk-in freezer and new cold room built into&#160;the space.&#160; This will allow us to take advantage of the significant amount of frozen items available from independant producers in Edmonton and Alberta and enable us to expand our grocery category as well. <strong>The Countdown is underway...</strong> Moving day is almost here and everyone including our producers, our team and even our customers are getting excited about the move.&#160; We are so grateful for the support we have received from our members and the commitment that everyone has made to expanding the Local Organic food economy in Edmonton.&#160; We are making a material difference to our local economy and changing the way people eat each week.&#160; This new and expanded warehouse is proof that our food family is making it work and we are excited to bring you good food every day. We plan to have a Grand Opening and Open House in June and hope to see as many of you there as possible.&#160; You can learn about how we work, meet our team and producers, and understand even more about where your food comes from! Have&#160;a Great Week! Danny. Founder, The Organic Box. <h2>Featured Producers</h2> <table cellspacing="&quot;15&quot;" cellpadding="&quot;0&quot;" bgcolor="&quot;#edf0e9&quot;"> <tbody> <tr> <td align="&quot;center&quot;" valign="&quot;top&quot;"><img title="&quot;caminohc&quot;" src="&quot;/uploadedImages/009_-_This_Week/caminohcdark.jpg&quot;" alt="&quot;caminohc&quot;" /></td> <td> <h2>Camino Fair Trade Hot Chocolate Mixes:</h2> Camino is a proudly&#160;Canadian company that is dedicated to providing Organic and Fair Trade products to their customers. Sentiments that&#160;sit very close to the hearts of us here at The Organic Box. We already carry&#160;much of their chocolate line,&#160;and their Fair Trade juices. Now we are expanding to include their hot chocolate mixes: <strong>Chili &amp; Spice, Dark, and Milk.</strong>&#160;All Camino hot chocolates are GMO-free, soy lecithin-free, and certified Organic, Fairtrade, and Kosher.</td> </tr> <tr> <td align="&quot;center&quot;" valign="&quot;top&quot;"><img title="&quot;BajaOrganic&quot;" src="&quot;/uploadedImages/009_-_This_Week/Baja" alt="&quot;BajaOrganic&quot;" /> &nbsp; <img title="&quot;BajaOrganic01&quot;" src="&quot;/uploadedImages/009_-_This_Week/BajaOrganic01.jpg&quot;" alt="&quot;BajaOrganic01&quot;" /></td> <td> <h2>&#160;Baja Organics:</h2> Our friends in Vancouver who import most of our non-local food for us, <strong>Discovery Organics</strong>, is very pleased to announce that they are finally getting their first shipments in from<strong> Baja Organics</strong>. Baja Organics is operated by the indigenous people of the Ejidos (communal lands) that were first established 160 years ago. Here is an excerpt from Discovery expaining the project: "Located on true desert land, close to the Colorado River, between the Sea of Cortes and Yuma, Arizona, Ejido Benito Juarez de Leyes is a cooperative farming communal land that hasn&#8217;t been farmed since 1937. The residents have always wanted to farm their own land &#8211; they just needed the skills and financing. After many trips to this area, we were lucky to be introduced to these "Ejidotarios", and through an 18 month process, we have, together with a great team in Mexico, dug wells, leveled land, planted out 150 acres, received our organic certification and food safety permits from Primus Labs, and are starting the harvest. This is the only Ejido in this huge growing area that is operating as a cooperative, with the villagers farming on their own land &#8211; instead of watching wealthy landowners till what used to be their soil. The younger generation who left for city jobs, some in the U.S., are returning. Already, one in four families has someone working, and learning the land &#8211; harvesting, weeding, seeding and moving pipe." Over the coming months we will be bringing in seasonal produce from Baja Organics to help fill the gap until our own local farms start up their first harvests. We already have <strong>kale, swiss chard, and butternut squash</strong> coming in and can expect many more wonderful, fresh, supportive produce to come.</td> </tr> </tbody> </table>