Archives for September 2017

  • | 12.09.2016

    Beginning December 17, we will have new Weekend Hours: 10 am – 6pm. Our Deli will be open to prepare your favorite beverage or Signature Sandwich from 10 am – 3pm. Thank you for your patronage!

  • Talking Turkey: A Poultry Primer | 11.14.2016

    First time cooking a turkey? Or just want a refresher before the big day? You’ve found your primer.


    October is National Co-op month and it’s also the month we celebrate with our annual meeting. When you joined the Good Earth Market, you joined with your friends and peers to ensure the ongoing commitment to our local community and our local food system. Don’t forget, when you join a co-op you own a piece of the business. Stay informed and be heard by attending the annual meeting:


    LOCATION: Good Earth Market Co-Op, Upstairs Loft

    DATE:           Thursday, October 27

    TIME:           5:30 pm – light refreshments, music, mingle with good friends

    6:00 pm – C. E. Pugh, Chief Operating Office, NCG

    6:30 pm – Carol Beam, President of the Board


    Our special guest speaker this year is C. E. Pugh from National Cooperative Grocers (NCG). C. E. is the Chief Operating Officer for NCG and he will be presenting on the national trends affecting co-op grocery stores like ours. C. E. has been involved in co-ops for many years and his passion for the success of co-ops is clear. You don’t want to miss this chance to meet him.


    We hold our annual membership meeting during National Co-Op Month as a way to highlight the co-op business model and to remind members that Good Earth Market exists primarily for the benefit of its members. Being “Stronger Together” requires all of us to be active shoppers, active advocates, and active members. Show your support by attending this year’s annual meeting.


    For more information on the event, contact Mike Howard, General Manager, at 259-2622. Good Earth Market is also online at

  • Good Earth Market Board Elections | 10.11.2016

    From Kevin Dowling, Board Vice President:

    I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of the presidential race. I’ve made my choice. I’m ready to mark my ballot and mail it in.

    But I’m having a tougher time choosing three members to serve on the Good Earth Market’s Board of Directors. That’s because you and I have five fine candidates to consider:

    art-walk-bd-cand-2016-273(pictured left-right)

    Evad Vanspoore’

    David Cleaves

    Alicia Pettys

    Maribeth Haynes


    Linda Westmacott (not shown)



    Fortunately, you have opportunities to get to know the candidates. The Good Earth Market is holding two more Meet and Greet the Candidates:

    1. Oct. 14, 12-1 p.m.
    2. Oct. 21, 12-1 p.m.

    Stop in and talk with the candidates. Learn their views on the Co-op. And let them know what you think.

    Once you’ve decided on the three candidates you’ll vote for, you can drop your ballot in the box at the market.

    The Board of Directors represents all of the members of the Good Earth Market and is responsible for the operation of the store. The election is one of your opportunities to exercise your voice in the Co-op.

    Your vote is important. Please cast it by Oct. 27. The election results will be announced during the annual meeting on Oct. 27.

  • We have exciting news! | 08.29.2016

    New deli!We have just launched a full scale deli remodel that will bring you a new and expanded salad bar, a hot food bar, new sandwiches, pizza, and a new grab & go case, with new recipes alongside your many favorites. We’re getting new equipment that will help us be more efficient so that we can get you great tasting, quality food quicker than ever before. And it’s just around the corner. This is very exciting news… a real game changer for us.

    And, right now as we are in the thick of this critical time in our co-op’s future, our customer traffic and our sales have reached a concerning low level. Paying our bills during this time of low cash (as a result of low sales) makes it a challenge to keep the shelves stocked with all of your favorite products. This has been a trying time for us. The staff and the Board of Directors, with the help of National Co-op Grocers, have been fighting hard to get us to this point.


    Right now we need our member support more than ever!

    It will help immensely if you can concentrate your purchases at the Co-op as much as possible while we make our market a better place for everyone.



    Look for hundreds of these everyday low prices!

    We continue to have the largest selection of local foods in Billings. That’s important to all of us. And, we offer great, everyday low prices on hundreds of Co-op Basics items throughout the store. We also have screaming Hot Deals that have been a great value for our customers and are changing the hours of our Beer & Wine Happy Hour to better fit your work schedule. Now you can get 10% off all beer and wine from 3pm to 6pm, Monday through Friday.



    Buy a $50 gift card for only $40!

    And if that’s not enough to get your attention, now through the end of October you can purchase a $50 Good Earth Market Gift Card for just $40. That is a 20% savings and there is no limit on these cards, so buy more and save more. Buying a gift card now and using it for future shopping will be a great way for the co-op to generate cash. It’s a “WIN WIN” for all!

    Come in and take advantage of all these great promotions and support your co-op at the same time. Tell your family. Tell your friends. Everyone is welcome. See you in the store and, of course, thank you so much for your continued support of Billings only local food co-op.

    Mike Howard
    General Manager

    Happy Hour 1up Vertical (4)-page-001


  • Introducing the Co+op Explorers | 08.23.2016


    Kids ages 12 and under are invited to become a Good Earth Market Co+op Explorer and be eligible to receive one free banana per visit! To become a card-carrying Co+op Explorer, kids simply need to bring a parent or supervising adult to the customer service counter and ask to become a Co+op Explorer. Each child will be issued their very own super official Co+op Explorers card!

    Then, once kids are signed up, here’s how it works:

    Kids and parents stop by the customer service counter, where we keep the designated Co+op Explorers banana basket. Next to the banana basket, you’ll find a smaller basket containing Co+op Explorers stickers. Take a sticker and put it on your child’s shirt or jacket (that’s so staff will know your child or children are banana eating Co+op Explorers, and they can account for it at the checkout counter. Then, each child is eligible to take one banana and enjoy eating it while you shop.

    When you check out, please remind the cashier that your child or children ate a free banana as part of Co+op Explorers so that we can track participation in the program.

    That’s all there is to it! If you have any questions, please ask any staff member.


  • This Week’s Local Produce | 07.25.2016

    Organic Montana-grown cherries are IN!!

    Flathead cherries are in! Enjoy every morsel of these Montana-grown delicacies. Get ’em while you can!

    Enjoy summer’s bounty and find seasonal, farm-fresh produce for your meals everyday at the Co-op.

    Local produce is available while it lasts. Check out the store for new arrivals all summer long!


    New This Week

    Beans – green, yellow, & purple



    What’s local now?










    Garlic Scapes





    Mustard Greens



    Onions, Green






    Tomatoes, Slicing

    Tomatoes, Cherry

    Tomatoes, Sun-Dried














  • Take the Local Food Challenge this July | 07.12.2016

    Good Earth Market is teaming up with 25 locally owned businesses across the state to sponsor the first annual Montana Local Food Challenge.

    Throughout the month of July, individuals, businesses, and families will challenge their eating and shopping habits by committing to eating more Montana-grown foods. Whether you want to commit to eating or shopping at more restaurants and grocers that serve local food, growing your own garden, spending more dollars per month on local food, joining a CSA, or asking your school and hospital boards to procure more local foods, there is something for everyone, from the Costco-only family, to the college student on a tight budget, to the die-hard locavore.

    Eating local brings a myriad of benefits: besides being fresher, more nutritious, and better tasting, local food builds communities and local economies, supports family farms and ranches, and protects genetic diversity and regional food security.

    Here at Good Earth Market, we strive to provide customers with fresh, affordable local food and build lasting relationships with our agricultural communities that are the backbone of our state.

    Since our founding over 20 years ago, Good Earth Market Co-op has believed that building a strong, local food system is a two-fold process involving both the consumer and the local producer. We have worked hard to fulfill our mission to improve access to local foods in our community, not only to give the consumer options, but to provide a market for local producers. We’ve been a leader in local foods from the start and even now continue to provide hundreds of local products every single day. As the first store to carry many of our community’s favorite local foods, such as Trevino’s Tortillas, BBar Ranch, Kate’s Garden & CSA, and Healthy Pantry, we are proud not just talk about local foods, but live it everyday!

    Participants in the challenge will find local foods everyday at Good Earth Market – dairy, meats, grains, and produce! Just look for the Get Local shelf tag throughout the store.

    Get Local circle shelf tags-page-001All are invited to participate! Go to to take the challenge and start working towards a better Montana today. The website will give you access to lots of helpful resources, like where to eat and grocery shop locally, where to source your local ingredients, and why it all matters.

  • Why the Comparison between Sitting & Smoking? |

    Already feel like you are doing everything for your health, but unaware of the impact of one our most seemingly innocuous habits of the day?  Turns out our sedentary lifestyles are impacting our health more significantly than previously recognized and these negative health consequences are not reversed with a few hours at the gym!!

    Researcher Dr. James Levine, from the Mayo Clinic, is credited with coining the phrase “sitting is the new smoking.” He is a leading endocrinologist, who has studied the effects of sitting on our metabolism and overall health. Prolonged sitting, like long-term smoking, increases our risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, depression and all-cause mortality (a term for any cause of death). Yes, you read that right, according to several large population studies, all of us weekend warriors and gym rats are still at increased risk as long as we continue to sit for several hours per day at our desk, on the couch or driving.

    So, you say, thank you doomsayer Dr. Phillips-Dorsett, what am I supposed to do about that??

    Thankfully, short of returning to life as we knew it 100 years ago, when we were 5 times more active in our daily routine than now, there are several strategies to combat our sedentary habits. I have listed a few below.

    Move throughout the day. A recent study published in Diabetes Care presented evidence that periodic light walking or ‘simple resistance activities,’ like half squats and knee raises, improves after meal levels of blood sugar, insulin and triglycerides (a type of fat measured in the blood). Reducing these markers means improved heart and blood vessel health. Do anything that increases the amount of steps throughout your day: use the bathroom on another floor and take the stairs, or park your car at the far end of the parking lot (also reduces risk of getting hit by or hitting the other cars jockeying for the closest spot), then walk to the store.

    Modify your work environment. Standing desks are often prescribed for and sometimes covered by insurance for back pain and other musculoskeletal ailments. See your primary care doctor for more information. There are now even treadmill desks, which have been shown to increase memory and information retention. Ask your clients or staff if some meetings can be held during a walking session. Get a headset for your phone and walk around your office while speaking with clients.

    Walk to work, school, the grocery store, etc. If you are within a mile of work or your favorite shopping center, strongly consider walking or biking there. It’s easy to get in the habit of driving everywhere, but perhaps the next time you reach for your keys, think about getting out your sneakers and a backpack instead.

    Developing new habits is always a challenge. Start with something you see yourself doing regularly, instead of something that you commit to for a week or two and then don’t find you are able to continue. Creating a new routine will undoubtedly take some trial and error and the type of activity will likely need to be modified with the seasons. The key is to stay consistent. So if you have avoided smoking for your health or are a former smoker, this new information is timely. Don’t hesitate to take the next step (many steps) to ensure you are doing all you can to remain healthy.

    Dr. Danielle PHillips-Dorsett

    Dr. Phillips-Dorsett received her Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine in 2015 from Bastyr University in Seattle, Washington.  She places emphasis on understanding the underlying cause of disturbance in a person that leads to physical and emotional discomfort. Using this as a foundation, she helps patients by bolstering their own defense systems to not only return the body to health, but to optimize well being.

    Dr. Phillips-Dorsett joined Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic in November 2015 as one of the Family Medicine/Naturopathic Oncology residents. She sees patients at both St. Vincent Frontier Cancer Center and Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic.


    For more on wellness, please attend a free Lunchtime Food for Thought with Dr. Audrey Schenewerk at the Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic on Tuesday, July 19th; and, with Dr. Jennifer Krieger (“How to Handle Stress by Living in the Moment“) at Good Earth Market on Wednesday, July 20, 12:05-12:50pm.

  • Lunchtime Food for Thought: How to Handle Stress by Living in the Moment | 06.16.2016

    Does it seem that you are constantly fighting an uphill battle when it comes to stress? Have you seen it negatively impact your health and the relationships of those closest to you? Do you suffer from a chronic disease and notice that your symptoms worsen and correlate with an increased stress level?  Interested in learning how to tackle stress and manage it effectively? Join Dr. Jennifer Krieger of Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic to further discuss stress and stress management techniques to help you live a healthier and happier life.

    Please call Good Earth Market to reserve your spot, or sign up at the customer service center.


  • Introducing La Riojana Wine | 05.04.2016

    LaRiojanaStorePhotoAre you looking for a great wine at a great price?

    Try our new, award winning wines from La Riojana, recently added to our extensive selection of quality, value wines!

    This organically grown, Fair Trade wine comes in Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and Malbec wines at an incredible value of only $6.99 each!

    Wine You Can Feel Good About

    La Riojana is a co-op is located in the renowned wine region of northwest Argentina. Made up of over 500 members, 80% of members are small-scale producers, and most small-scale producers have less than three hectares each.

    Members of the co-op benefit by being guaranteed purchases of grapes at fairer and higher prices, have access to loans, and are offered free technical assistance and agricultural advice. Profits are distributed and reinvested in new machinery and to improve production.

    La Riojana was also the first winery in Argentina to receive Fair Trade certification and is dedicated to improving the lives of its members and communities. $2 per case purchased by participating co-ops goes back to La Riojana’s community projects. To date, a secondary school with many supplies, water facility, and a hospital have been constructed. In addition, the fund helps farmers pay for the costs of organic certification. Currently, La Riojana grapes are grown with organic practices, but are working toward certification.

    This project is made possible by a direct trade from co-op to co-op. Grocery co-ops buy exclusively and directly from La Riojana co-op.

  • From the Wellness Department: The Power of Small Habits | 04.24.2016

    With the flurry of the “New Year” behind us, I want to challenge you to start each day fresh, with a New-Day/New-Start attitude. Every day is a new opportunity, and the options are endless! I don’t mean anything huge like painting the house, rebuilding an engine, or starting a new business. Try something new, make a progressive change in your daily routine, or just tackle a task using a new method. Each of the small new things can be milestones! It all depends on your perspective or mindset.

    Not a breakfast eater? Having protein at the beginning of your day (seriously, shoot for 20 grams) has been proven to increase brain power. Forget the sugar and carb breakfast – who really wants that 10:00am brain fog?

    Does your job require you to sit for hours at a time? Get up and move or stretch for a few minutes every hour, get that blood moving! And yes, it’s chilly outside, but go out anyway for a quick lunchtime walk– the fresh air and sunshine will do you a world of good.

    Exhausted at the end of the day? Before turning in, take 10 minutes to stretch – your neck, shoulders, back, and hips will thank you with a better night’s sleep.

    I recently read a quote that said, “If you don’t take care of your body, then where are you going to live?” If that doesn’t get you thinking, read it again. Then start making changes as needed, a little at a time. Trade the cookie for apple slices, add greens to your smoothie, walk for 5 more minutes. Take a break from Netflix to walk your dog, or throw a frisbee with your kids. Eat a lighter meal in the evening. Swap out that creamy salad dressing for a lighter vinaigrette, almonds instead of croutons, red wine instead of white. Try out that new yoga class, and invite a friend along. Go to bed earlier.

    Keep it simple. Do what inspires you. Make one change at a time (multitasking is overrated, not to mention overwhelming!). If you love what you do, that one little thing, you will keep doing it. If you feel good because of that one little shift in your routine, you will be inspired to make other little changes…and it will perpetuate! You just might become addicted to shaking things up. Pretty soon you will be doing what inspires you, things you love, all in line with your mindset.

    The biggest trend now is to pay attention to you, what suits you, what feels not just good, but RIGHT for you. The options are endless (did I already say that?). Not to steal a slogan, but Nike was right on track when they coined the phrase JUST DO IT! Seriously, just do it.

    Dolly’s Product Picks:

    Garden of Life Wild Rose D-Tox – If you’re looking for support for your health goals or to begin a new health habit, this cleanse offers a healthy, balanced and complete detoxification.

    Chico Bags – These nifty little bags are easy and compact to store and carry and have so many uses! Check out the Bottle Slings, Original Bags, Sidekicks, Vita Bags.

    Klean Kanteen! Insulated, non-insulated, many sizes & options….these reusable, stainless steel bottles are awesome!

    Pic - Dolly

     written by Dolly Fansler, GEM’s Wellness & Front End Manager

  • Juried Member Art Show |

    New Moon Choices

    “New Moon Choices”, Diane Teske-Harris, 16×20 acrylic

    The Apple Gallery at Good Earth Market presents a Juried Member Art Show during the downtown Billings Art Walk on Friday, May 6 from 5-9pm. Any member in good standing of The Good Earth Market has been invited to submit work to this juried show.  Richard Clawson, longtime Art Walk member and former director of Grafix Studio, will choose a first, second and third place artwork from the 40+ pieces submitted.

    The show includes a wide ranging view of our member’s talents, with works in oil and acrylic to
    fabric, mosaic, glass and clay. GEM’s Juried Member Art Show will be on view through July 30th.
    Mosaic by Linda Lemire

    “Untitled”, Linda Lemire, mosaic

    Lana Clymore Mixed Media

    “Untitled”, Lana Clymore, Mixed media including silk, beads, clay & feathers


  • Lunchtime Food for Thought: Freshen Up on Anti-Inflammatory Cooking | 04.19.2016

    FREE Tired of hearing about how you should be eating an anti-inflammatory diet, but are not quite sure what that means or where to begin? Join Dr. Phillips-Dorsett of Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic for an hour packed full of useful information and recipe tips. This talk is focused on cooking ingredients and how to use them to your advantage to simmer underlying inflammation. Bring questions and a pen. Handouts are provided.

    Reserve a spot by signing up at the customer service center or giving us a call!

  • Earth Day Membership Drive | 03.18.2016

    Our last membership drive was so successful, we’ve decided to do it again! From now until Earth Day, anyone who becomes a GEM member or who renews their membership before Earth Day (April 22) will have their name entered into a drawing for a $50 GEM gift card.

    Membership is a great value for only $10! Benefits include a once-a-month 5% discount, member specials, and a vote and voice at GEM’s meetings, among others. Plus, your commitment supports a locally-controlled food system.

    Gift_CardOn Earth Day, April 22 at 3pm we will draw for the gift card, and you don’t even have to be present to win. To enter the drawing, your cashier will ask you to fill out a raffle ticket (name & phone) when you renew or join, and it will be entered into the drawing box on the spot.

    Thank you for renewing your membership or joining the Co-op for the first time! GEM is the ONLY cooperative, locally owned, full service grocery store in Yellowstone County. GEM offers sustainably grown and organic food and products and its profits are returned to the Billings Community!

  • Order your organic, heirloom tomato plants! | 03.17.2016

    Spring is in the air!  Are you anxious to get your fingers in the soil?

    Pre-order your tomato plants from

    Kate’s Garden!

    • Locally grown in Billings Heights
    • Grown from organic seeds
    • Grown in organic soil
    • No pesticides
    • No chemicals
    • Large heirloom variety!! See our list below.

    $6.99 each

    Limited number of plants available – order yours before it’s too late!

    Available for pick-up May 1.

    Order yours in the produce department, give us a call, or drop us an email.

    Only four varieties are left! Get them while you can.



    Indian StripeIndian Stripe

    79 days

    Considered to be a strain of “Cherokee Purple”. The fruits of “Indian Stripe” are slightly smaller, lighter in color, and yield more fruits. The original seed came to Carolyn Male (who named this tomato) of NY from Donna Nelson, TX, who found this tomato growing in the garden of Clyde Burson, who has been growing this as long as he can remember. Big regular-leaf tomato plant produces big crops of 10-12 oz., dusky-purple, irregular shaped, slightly flattened beefsteak tomatoes with a big, complex flavors. Produces well in late season coolness. A wonderful sauce tomato, or sandwich tomato.

    85 days

    “Pineapple” is an heirloom garden favorite that grows to up to 2 lbs. Indeterminate, regular leaf plant produces huge, slightly flattened, yellow beefsteak tomatoes with a red blushing and streaks on the outside. It’s yellow interior contains few seeds and a red star-burst in the center. Taste is wonderfully mild with tropical fruity-sweet flavors. Great old-fashioned full , complex flavors. A good choice for slicing into sandwiches or salads. This is a show stopper!


    Amish PasteAmish Paste
    85 days

    A very productive leafy plant that produces up to 12 oz, deep-red, oxheart-shaped, meaty fruit. (Probably one of the largest paste tomatoes) Lots of sweet, delicious tomatoey flavors from this coreless meaty fruit. A great slicing tomato, canning tomato and sauce tomato.


    Gardener's DelightGardeners Delight
    65 days

    (AKA “Sugar Lump”) Heirloom from Germany. Indeterminate, regular leaf plants produce 3/4 to 1-1/2 inch red cherry tomatoes borne in clusters of 6-12, loaded with sugary sweetness.


    What’s the difference between indeterminate and determinate?

    Indeterminate:  Ripens over a long period of time, climbing type, needs to be staked

    Determinate:  Ripens over a short period of time, bush type, stays short, good for pots

  • Membership Drive Results | 03.11.2016

    Our membership drive was a success! In January & February, we ran a membership drive to encourage people to join or renew their memberships with the opportunity to win a $50 GEM gift card.

    Over the course of a month, 283 people joined or renewed! Thank you to everyone who renewed or began their commitment to the co-op, and congratulations to Cassandra Amos, winner of the $50 GEM gift card!

    Stay tuned for our Earth Day Membership Drive!

  • Join our Juried Art Exhibit |

    Members in good standing (dues are only $10 a year!) are invited to submit original artworks for the May 2016 Art Walk event in the Apple Gallery at the Good Earth Market.

    Work must be original, completed by the member submitting the work, framed for hanging (no glass & clips), and available for sale to the public. Our juror, Richard Clawson, will choose a first, second and third place work and the artist will receive a $50, $25 or $15 gift certificate to the Market.

    Please sign up as an interested artist at our customer service desk as soon as possible so we can get a feel for the scope of the show. Artwork will be due on Friday, April 1, with the judging to take place on Saturday, April 9. The show will hang in the Apple Gallery from May 6 until July 30.

    We are looking forward to displaying our members’ incredible talent!


  • Board Notes: It’s our 10 year Anniversary! | 02.09.2016

    Pic - LP FairFebruary is a notable month for GEM – it is the month we moved into the great store we have occupied for TEN YEARS!!!!!! That’s right – TEN YEARS!!!!! On February 19 of 2006 we opened for business – it was a Sunday and it was a cold, cold day outside, but everything was warm and wonderful inside. HAPPY 10 YEARS TO ALL OF US. Looking back over the past 10 years brings to mind:

    • The first farm-to-table designated restaurant in Billings. We’ve got the best deli in the region, putting out the best food with the best local ingredients.

    Billings Gazette Reader’s Choice for Best Health Food Store – 5 times!

    Membership in the National Co-operative Grocers Association – helping us save on our wholesale cost of goods.

    Senator Max Baucus working day – the Senator chose GEM for his day of service in the community.

    Senator Jon Tester’s round table meetings upstairs – promoting and supporting local producers.

    Sunday Suppers – GEM started the movement to bring people together over local food prepared by local chefs.

    Earth Day celebrations – come rain or shine, we’re the place to celebrate Earth Day.

    The Farmer’s Market booth – providing a venue for GEM and our local producers to promote each other.

    The Art Walk and the Apple Gallery – we’re so thankful for our relationship with the local arts community.

    • The community of loyal co-op shoppers – we are so much more than a grocery store, we are a community of individuals who value our relationships with each other.

    Local producers – we are so fortunate to have great local producers and great local products every day.

    Newsletter advertisers – we appreciate your ongoing support of the Co-op!


    written by Carol Beam, GEM’s Board President



    Pic - Jon Tester

    Perry McNeese, Jon Tester, and Carol Beam


    We celebrated two annual meetings at the Babcock Theatre in Downtown Billings!


    We’ve been supporting Local Producers since our founding – farmer’s markets, Sunday Suppers, and so much more.

    Pic - SundaySupper4

    Local dining at it’s best at our Sunday Suppers.

    Pic - Patio2

    Our members pitched in and volunteered energy and resources to install a new patio.

    Pic - Max Baucus2

    Former Senator Max Baucus chose to do his Working Day at the Good Earth Market!



  • Meet our New Grocery Manager: Tom Parks | 01.28.2016

    Tom ParksI would like to start by introducing myself – my name is Tom Parks and I am the new grocery manager at Good Earth Market. I know I have some big shoes to fill following Pam, who has taken over the produce manager position. A few words about my background, I am a longtime resident of Laurel. My past experience includes work as a buyer for various industries, as well as both wholesale and retail sales. I have also spent quite a bit of time in the agricultural field across Montana. My agriculture background gives me a huge appreciation for the mission of Good Earth Market in providing sustainable, local and environmentally friendly products in a co-op structure.

    I’m excited to be a member of an awesome group of employees and I look forward to meeting and getting acquainted with each of you as you shop. Please, make a point of introducing yourself when you are in the store.

    Tom Parks & Cassie M. at GEM

    Tom, Grocery Manager, & Cassie (Cashier & Grocery Clerk) are working hard to keep our shelves full with your favorite products!

  • Melatonin & Children | 01.04.2016

    sleeping-baby-1504680-638x468I have asked myself many times whether to use melatonin with children in a clinical setting. Many times, lifestyle and dietary changes make such an impact on sleep that supplements may not be necessary. For children and adults, a bedtime routine is a very important step in sleep hygiene. A bedtime routine sets the stage for sleep. Finding a pattern that best fits your family can be a challenge, but this could include: brushing teeth, story time, sleepy time tea, followed by an appropriate bedtime.

    Other general sleep guidelines include:
    – Decreasing mental activity after dinner (including computer and television).
    – Avoiding caffeine after lunch.
    – Keeping the bedroom quiet and dark while sleeping.
    – Dealing with anxieties & worries before bed.
    – Taking a hot bath with Epsom salts or essential oils.
    – Avoiding large snacks or meals before bed.

    The list could go on and on, but if the night time ritual is not working, is there another option? Is there a way to work with the body’s natural ability to fall asleep versus causing a drugged sleep? The answer is “yes”, based on current research, melatonin can play a role in the sleep puzzle.

    What is melatonin?
    Melatonin is a hormone made in the pineal gland in the brain. When melatonin function is healthy, it is released in a pulse-like pattern throughout the day; lower in the morning and higher at night. Melatonin works as our internal clock; it changes with the season based on light cycles. As we age, melatonin levels begin to decrease. Melatonin levels are highest in infancy and drop in the adolescent and elderly age groups.

    Melatonin has been found to be safe for long term use in children. Based on a large Dutch study, there was found to be no statistically significant pubertal change between the group taking melatonin and a matched group of the same age and sex. On average, melatonin had been taken for three years at an average dose of 2.69mg. Other long range studies have also been published showing the safety of melatonin in children.

    So how does melatonin work?
    Melatonin works in children with delayed onset of sleep. This means that some children likely have a dim light onset melatonin (DLOM) occurring later than other children who fall asleep easily at bed time. Melatonin has been shown to move the DLOM earlier when it is taken 1-2 hours before bedtime. At the recommended dosage, minimal side effects were seen. The most common side effects seem to be headache and grogginess.

    For children with delayed onset of sleep and night awakenings, melatonin may be a great option when given under the supervision of a physician. Taken at appropriate times, it can support the body’s ability to make melatonin earlier and help the body fall asleep easily and at an appropriate time.

    Dr. Rachel DayRachel Day N.D., is a family practice physician at Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic. She can be reached at (406) 259-5096. Learn more at



  • Local Producer Spotlight: White Deer Ranch | 01.01.2016

    White Deer Ranch


    Lee and Roxanne, the owners, during a farm tour 2015. Photo credit Casey Paige, Billings Gazette.

    Lee and Roxanne , the Owners of White Deer Ranch, believe that if they take care of the earthworms and the honeybees with proper earth stewardship, everything else will thrive. They grow micro-greens in their historic ranch building converted to a greenhouse. Pick up these highly nutritious and tasty plants at the Good Earth Market in the produce section in 2.5 oz clamshells. Micros can be used in salads, smoothies, topping your favorite dish savory dish. A fantastic ingredient in pesto, dips, stews and more! Its fresh and its local!!

    What is is? A microgreen is a tiny vegetable green that is used both as a visual and flavor component or ingredient primarily in fine dining restaurants. Fine dining chefs use microgreens to enhance the beauty, taste and freshness of their dishes with their delicate textures and distinctive flavors. Smaller than “baby greens” and harvested later than “sprouts” microgreens can provide a variety of leaf flavors, such as sweet and spicy. They are also known for their various colors and textures. Among upscale markets, they are now considered a specialty genre of greens that are good for garnishing salads, soups, plates, and sandwiches.

    Edible young greens and grains are produced from various kinds of vegetables, herbs or other plants. They range in size from 1” to 3” including the stem and leaves. A microgreen has a single central stem which has been cut just above the soil line during harvesting. It has fully developed cotyledon leaves and usually has one pair of very small, partially developed true leaves. The average crop-time for most microgreens is 10–14 days from seeding to harvest.

    Lee and Roxanne invite you to come visit them at their ranch/farm, which is organic certified for hay, pasture and foraged plants, to learn more about the animal systems that integrate with farming and ranching systems to renovate and regenerate the land. You can buy free range eggs, microgreens, dried herbs, mushrooms, Roxanne’s natural creams and potions and MORE at the Farm Stand located on the porch of the Yellow House where they live.

    Schedule a tour for individuals or for groups. The tours are very affordable and might include all or any of these topics, a demonstration or a classroom setting and can be set up to suit different age groups and interest levels. Fun sights to see anytime of year are the microgreen production in the greenhouse, beehouse, pastured pigs, mobile chicken coop, dwarf goats, Jersey/Angus cross cattle and the farm store.  They often include some refreshments or tastings of their homegrown goodies.

    This is agricultural tourism in motion! See how we experience a back-to-the-land approach to vacationing, which is authentic, relaxing and educational. Two different rental houses to choose from that fit many family sizes or couples.

    Contact them and learn more through Facebook or their website.


    Known in Turkey as cacik, this garlicky mixture of green vegetables, fresh herbs and yogurt can be served as a salad or as a dip with pita and raw vegetables.  Traditionally, cacik is made with a number of vegetables, including cucumbers, cabbage and beets.

    2.5 oz. clamshell of sunflower microgreens
    1 garlic clove, minced
    1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
    2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried
    3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or 1 teaspoon dried
    1 tablespoon fresh chopped mint or 1 teaspoon dried
    2-3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
    1 cup thick greek style yogurt
    1/4 cup chopped fresh scallions (optional)

    Combine all ingredients in a food processor and use short bursts to chop the sunflower into small bits and to mix the ingredients together.  To prepare without a processor, chop all ingredients finely and mix together.  Refrigeration only makes the flavors combine better, so make a double batch and save it in a lidded jar in the refrigerator.


    This is the inside of the beehouse. One of the many features of White Deer Ranch. Photo credit: Tracy Konoske, visitor.


    China the Meishan Sow is a pastured pig living her life as nature intended loving being a pig. Photo credit: Roxanne Dunn.


    The goats are really friendly and love petting. Photo credit: Alexis Brill, visitor.


    Lee explains the benefits of the behooves to a tour participant in 2015. Photo credit: Tracy Konoske, visitor.