Category Archives: news

Moving On Up!

Please update your RSS settings and bookmarks– our blog has fancy new digs! We’ve moved the Local Box blog and content to http://greenling.com/blog. The RSS for the new blog is: http://feeds.feedburner.com/Eatingoutofthelocalbox.

We’re still posting weekly Local Box meal plans, plus original recipes, cooking tips, and other cool stuff. Thanks for making the big move with us!

Lettuce Wrap Up 2011

In light of our exciting news that Greenling is expanding to Dallas, we thought we’d do some veggie math and evaluate how the past year in Central Texas looked for local food.

Despite a devastating historical drought, our hard-working local farmers thankfully persevered and still managed to dish out thousands of pounds of local goodness for all of us to enjoy. Can we get a woop woop for this amazing group of farmers?

Without further ado, ‘lettuce’ wrap-up 2011:

  • 20,369 Local Boxes were delivered- that’s about 142,583 lbs of local produce on Central Texas tables this year.
  • In addition, we delivered about 20,000 lbs of local produce in addition to what was in the Local Box
  • 54 different local farms provided the local goodness we delivered this year

Animal Farm in Central Texas

  • We estimate that because all of our local growers use sustainable methods, they saved over 150,000 pounds of pesticides NOT used on our food this year!
  • Since you ‘lettuce’ deliver your groceries in our fuel-efficient & sustainably routed trucks, 9,735 gallons of gas were saved on trips to the store.
  • Hundreds of thousands of ladybugs fed through organic pest control methods.
  • 13,800 meals made ridiculously easy and with all local and organic ingredients from our recipe kits.

Our awesome Prep Kitchen Team!

  • Countless food puns brainstormed at Greenling headquarters (only the best ones make it public, you know)

It was a great year and we know 2012 will be even better for local food. Thanks from the bottom of our artichoke hearts for all of your support!

Happy Hollandaise from Greenling!

Image courtesy Heifer International

It’s holiday thyme here at Greenling, and we’re celebrating by giving back in Central Texas, and around the world. Thanks to your generosity, our Buy One Give One organic turkey promotion was a tremendous success.

This week, we delivered a truckload of organic turkeys, stuffing, green beans, corn, and cranberry sauce to Brown Santa of Travis County. The warehouse elves at Brown Santa eagerly accepted our delivery, and gave us a tour of the gifts, clothes, and other items they have been collecting for families in need. Brown Santa will be delivering holiday dinners, toys, and other assistance to thousands of families in Central Texas today.

Families across the world, too, will benefit from the generosity of Greenling customers. By adding a small donation to their regular grocery orders, Greenling customers donated over $500 to Heifer International this year. Heifer International is one of our favorite charities, because it breaks the cycle of poverty by teaching poor families how to obtain sustainable sources of food and income.

Heifer International will use Greenling’s donation to send a heifer to a family in an impoverished area of the world. A good dairy cow can produce four gallons of milk a day – enough for a family to drink and share with neighbors. Milk protein helps transform sick, malnourished children into healthy boys and girls. The sale of surplus milk earns money for school fees, medicine, clothing and home improvements.

Thank you for making local and organic food part of your family’s celebrations this holiday season. We treasure all the holiday cards, photos, recipes and stories about local goodness you’ve shared with us this year.

With your support, our mission to fix the food system, support local sustainable producers and make real food available to everyone gets closer and closer to becoming a reality.

GMO Series cont. – The Dangers of GMO’s in Food

I started to write about the dangers of GMOs in food and quickly got overwhelmed. There is so much happening in the world about which we have no idea. I broke the dangers down to 3 major victims – Environment, Humans, and Economies and one philosophical.

Environment – First, the primary GMO foods were created to withstand herbicide and pesticide applications. Naturally, or rather, completely unnaturally, this has led to the application of 318 million additional pounds of toxic chemicals onto our land than would have been even possible before GMOs. Most of these chemicals are known carcinogens, known persistent environmental pollutants, and known to wreak havoc on ecosystems. These GMO plants are showing up in the wild, eaten by animals, and work their way up the food chain with no idea their effect. Well, some idea of their effect because studies prove them to create ulcers in pigs and hair on hamster tongues. Also, over-application of pesticides has led to super-weeds and super-pests. They have to put down stronger and more toxic chemicals (creating new GMOs to resist them) and some don’t die at all. Last major point is GMOs and the associated chemical applications reduce bio-diversity in all eco-systems.

Humans – The obvious danger is the increased exposure to herbicides/pesticides – both the workers with acute exposure, and to everyone else who eats the foods. It’s indisputable that these herbicides/pesticides end up in the food. Environmental Working Group tests produce every year and publishes how many/which pesticides/herbicides show up in our food. Beyond that, studies are piling up showing that our bodies don’t recognize these GMOs as food and try to reject them. Evidence is mounting that this plays some role in the explosion of food allergies. There are also studies showing direct damage to organs (including studies done by Monsanto, the maker of the GMOs).

Economies – Monsanto won’t let you save seeds from GMO crops. You have to buy them every year. For rural farmers this is a huge burden. But that’s just the beginning. They can’t stop GMOs from spreading naturally in the wild. But if they find it on your land they sue you. The Future of Food is a great movie about this and how it has decimated farming communities.

Lastly, Humanity – The ultimate victim. Monsanto was the first company to OWN LIFE. They can’t control it or stop it from evolving on its own, but they OWN it. If life is not sacred, the implications are quite profound. How long before they own you? Next week I will address the false propaganda about the benefits of GMOs in food. We have received negative feedback to these articles citing supposed world-saving benefits, but nobody has responded to my challenge to produce evidence of the benefits. We’ll also chat about how to avoid GMOs.

By Mason Arnold, founder and Cookie Monster

Local Turkeys for San Antonio and Austin

We are excited to announce that your local turkeys are available for pre-order again this year!

Local Turkey in Austin and San Antonio Texas

Jim Richardson is raising our local, pastured birds again this year and they are oh-so delicious. We’ve had several taste tests pitting them against conventional birds and it was almost insulting to the local bird to even suggest there could be a comparison. If you haven’t had one, you just won’t understand how good it can be until you try.

For generations the Richardsons have been conservation-minded in their farming efforts and care deeply about the health and well-being of their animals. All of their livestock are in large open areas/pastures and are free to interact with each other. Last year we sold out of local turkeys, so we encourage you to pre-order well in advance of Thanksgiving. Place your pre-order by Oct. 26 and we’ll even sweeten the deal – you’ll get your choice of a FREE Traditional Gravy Roasting Kit or a Kale Waldorf Salad kit!

To order, create a basket and choose either a medium (14-18 lb) or a large (18-24 lb) bird, then schedule it for delivery for the week of Nov 15 or the week of Nov 21. (As a limited item those are the only dates you’ll be able to select.) We’ll ask for a deposit to hold the reservation, and you’re done! You can come back and add dinner sides or other items to the basket later, but for now you’re just reserving the bird.

You Know What Really Gets My Goat?

Goat Meat now available

While the New York Times claims it’s ‘the most widely consumed meat in the world’ and I have been repeating that ever since, it turns out it’s fourth behind the usual suspects – pork, beef, and chicken. No KIDding. So, while they’re not the sleeping giant I sought out to promote, they are quite a special animal (vegetarians feel free to skip this article). Goats will eat just about anything that’s technically edible and chew on everything else to find out if it’s edible. Luckily there’s an abundance of natural pasture for them to browse at Windy Hill Organics in Comanche, Tx, where our all-pastured, local goats come from. Your shoes are safe!

We’ve carried goat milks, yogurts, and cheeses for a while, but once we learned about the nutrition in goat meat we decided to add it to the mix. It’s classified as a red meat but since goat is such a lean meat it usually requires low heat and slow cooking to preserve tenderness & moisture. It’s higher in iron, potassium, and thiamin than other meats and is able to maintain some sweetness found in lamb without all the saturated fats of lamb or beef.

Happy goats make happy goat meat and we now carry this delicacy at Greenling.com. We have several cuts to choose from – and plan to add more soon!

Ground – perfect for burgers, tacos or meatballs

Stew Meat – ideal for stews & chilis

Boneless Loin – great for grilling, braising or roasting (we recommend marinating it first, as it can overcook and dry out if you’re not careful!)

by Mason Arnold, Co-founder & Cookie Monster

Greenling Recipe Kitchen: Churning out tasty, healthy & convenient recipe kits since 2010

Today we celebrate the 1 year anniversary of our recipe kitchen! We’ve had so much fun developing recipe kits to help you all create home-cooked meals with fresh local & organic ingredients in a flash. Cheers to many more years of creativity in the kitchen!

If you haven’t tried them yet, check ’em out: there are a ton of options, and we have lots more in the works. The kits include all you need to create a tasty, quick home-cooked meal: everything is washed, prepped, portioned, and we include easy to follow instructions to whip it all together.

Pictured: Our rock star prep kitchen team: Jana, Rus & Claire, who have over 30 years combined experience working in the food industry

Not pictured: Devon & Joel, who keep the kitchen going behind the scenes with recipe testing & development!