Small Town Heart/Big Town Setting

June 16, 2023

This week’s update is going to start off on a somewhat different note. Usually we like to begin our weekly update to members on a light and positive note - referencing some great thing that has happened in or around the store in the last week. So saying that, perhaps this update might not be that far out of the ordinary after all! Because we do want to talk about a great thing that has been happening in and around the store for the last several weeks!

The store front of Steep Hill Food Co-op with largely visible vinyl window sign of the Steep Hill logo with text that reads, Your Local Organic Food Market.

We had our weekly meeting on Wednesday night, and several of the Interim Board members who have been in the store each day commented on the wonderful, positive energy exuded by members and shoppers who visit the store. There was a great deal of fond discussion and story swapping about the enthusiastic conversations that they have had with you all, and that you have also been able to have with other shoppers. There were remarks that being inside Steep Hill these days, when the store is bustling with people, feels like being in a small town market, where everyone knows everyone, and where people are always willing to take a moment out of their day to say hello, to have a short visit, to help you find what you are looking for, to tell you a story, to wish you well.

To our delight, we are all becoming more and more like a big, extended family. Because the energy, enthusiasm and optimistic vibes that you all bring with you into the store, and the warmth and sincerity that you leave behind when you go, have really made all the difference to us when we are there. It makes us want to work that much harder and that much smarter, to ensure that Steep Hill Food Co-operative becomes the best that it can be for you. Thank you for your enthusiasm, your encouragement and your commitment towards that goal as well!

Annual General Meeting

The AGM is scheduled for June 28, 2023, from 7:00 til 9:30 p.m., at Grace Westminster United Church, 505 - 10th Street East, Saskatoon. Save the date! We are looking forward to seeing members and non-members alike at the meeting. This is your co-operative, and the AGM is an excellent opportunity to contribute your vision for the future of Steep Hill. AGM business will include reports from the Interim Board, member’s question and answer period, voting on bylaw amendments, Board of Director elections including candidate biographies, and time for refreshments and socializing.

If the proposed bylaw amendment regarding the number of Board members passes, the maximum number of directors will increase to 12. Please consider running for the Steep Hill Board of Directors. Just a few short weeks ago, Steep Hill was a floundering business that was slated for closure. Today, we are talking about an AGM and a new lease on life for the store! The Interim Board has been developing forward-looking recommendations to support the in-coming Board that will be elected on the 28th. This is your opportunity to become a contributor to the new Steep Hill Board, and be directly involved in making important, creative and sound business decisions on behalf of the members and for the good of the co-op. The decisions that you will put into play will ensure the sustainability and longevity of the Steep Hill Food Co-operative for years to come. What an amazing and pivotal time to be playing a leading role in the extended life of one of the oldest food co-operatives in Canada!


Camino logo, Fairtrade organic.

Just when you thought that life couldn’t get any sweeter….Camino!

Camino is a Canadian brand of fair trade and organic food products, owned by La Siembra Co-operative based in the Ottawa-Gatineau region. Established in 1999, the worker-owned La Siembra Co-operative became the first registered importer of Fairtrade Certified cocoa and sugar in North America. Today, La Siembra works with 25 producer co-ops, supporting more than 47,500 family farmers in 14 countries. This Canadian co-operative has helped strengthen the democratic organizations of thousands of small-scale farmers. However, as the popularity of Fair Trade grows, big corporations are now attempting to lower the standards. To protect the future of small-scale farmers, we need to defend the fundamentals of the Fair Trade model, and continue to advocate for greater economic justice in our food system.

A bunch of Camino chocolate bars spread out onto a counter.

Camino has been supportive of Steep Hill for many years, gifting us with several fair trade/organic gift baskets. This is an excellent example of co-operation between two co-operatives! We are deeply appreciative to them for their continued support and for supplying us with such an amazing array of fair trade, organic delicacies for offer in the store. Steep Hill Food Co-operative is proud to carry the Camino line of delicious and mouth-watering chocolate treats including a wide range of delicious chocolate bars, hot chocolates and amazing baking products. All ingredients are sourced from groups of small-scale farmers in the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, Togo and Madagascar. Fairtrade Certification is provided by Fairtrade Canada which ensures that producer partners receive a fair price for their products and benefit from fair trade premiums that are reinvested back into their communities. Organic certification is provided by Quality Assurance International, one of the most well recognized international certification agencies, and a global leader in organic certification.

A fresh cup of Museo Coffee in a white and blue cup and saucer along with a Camino hazelnut and slated caramel chocolate bar.
Coffee and scene setup by Museo Coffee

Here is something sweet from Camino, to help you usher in summertime goodness! These beautiful scones are studded with chocolate chips and dried cranberries. They are delicious served warm, spread with butter or jam, and accompanied by a cup of tea or coffee, or a big glass of cold milk. This recipe works well with gluten-free flour mixes as well as regular flour. They freeze wonderfully! Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cranberry Scones



  1. Preheat oven to 425° F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl, rub the orange zest into the sugar.
  4. Add in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. With a grater, grate butter into flour mixture. Toss lightly to combine.
  6. With a fork, stir in kefir or buttermilk until a dough forms.
  7. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Sprinkle dough with cranberries and chocolate chips. Knead lightly to combine.
  8. Pat into a 1” thick rectangle. Cut into 12 portions.
  9. Place portions on parchment lined pan. Freeze for 15 minutes to firm up dough.
  10. Bake until golden brown. About 18-20 minutes.


The GoFundMe campaign that was started just after the special Members meeting at the end of April will soon come to a close. How wonderful and amazing it would be, if we could reach our goal of $50,000! A BIG THANK YOU to all of you who have already donated.

Light blue sky with rich green grasslands of a sun coming up in between the hills with the message that reads, Help Steep Hill Get Over This Hill! #RebuildSteepHill and displaying total funds raised out of $50,000 goal.

For those of you who have not yet had an opportunity to donate, please consider that if everyone in the Broadway area donated just $5, we would easily surpass our goal. It is sometimes common thinking that if you can’t donate a large amount to a goal, you might as well not donate what you easily can! Folks tend to think - what good will $2, or $5 or $10 do? Please resist thinking this way when you are considering supporting a goal that is something you believe in! A small amount from several people who strongly believe and are committed to a vision of something that is better and achievable, is as commendable as a large amount from a few people who believe in that same vision. Perhaps it is even more meaningful because it involves more people, which means more warm energy, more mental investment and more good karma from more good souls.

If you believe in:

Steep Hill’s “GoFundMe” Campaign is an excellent place to invest. Please consider donating any amount today. Help us over the crest of that steep hill!

Good Things To Remember…..

Membership in Steep Hill Co-operative is Cheap but the benefits and feeling of good will that you get when you stand shoulder to shoulder with others who believe in building community, encouraging sustainable living, connecting local producers to consumers and ensuring food security….PRICELESS!

Store Hours are Monday and Wednesday to Saturday, Noon to 7:00 p.m.; Tuesday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Sundays from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. We’d love to see you anytime! Come check out what we have in stock for you!


We couldn’t do this without the commitment and dogged determination of our many volunteers. Every one of you individually, and as a group, embodies the true meaning of co-operative spirit. Thank you for every moment that you spend on behalf of Steep Hill, and for everything that you do!

We couldn’t do this without the support and encouragement of Scott and Sammy, who have gone above and beyond their job descriptions, to ensure that Steep Hill is on its way to becoming a well organic olive-oiled machine. They are who you see every day, and we appreciate them both so much!

Ann Smith,

On behalf of the Steep Hill Interim Board