Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Food Conspiracy Co-op, Tucson

Once upon a time, health food stores were dank, dark hovels where you would find bins of mouse-gnawed, burlap sacks harboring bulk quantities of odd sounding comestibles such as "Bulgar Wheat," and "Rose Hips." Or such was my impression back in the '70's when, with trepidation, I set foot with my slightly older hippie friends into the Food Conspiracy Co-op on the hip Tucson strip, 4th Avenue. The bins of bulk were there, as were organic yogurts and "kefir;" loaves of heavy, dark bread and "granola." It smelled like roasted coffee beans and patchouli. I was intimidated and intrigued.

Fast forward a few decades. There the Co-op still sits, defying the Whole Foods and Trader Joe's of the world. It still smells exactly the same but now features items that I recognize and need: agave nectar and Fair Trade organic chocolate. The staff is kind, helpful and rather attractive - the vibe, loving.

In my neighborhood of Queens we have a few, great little health food markets that deserve shout outs: Sai Organics, Fresh Start Organic Market, Vitality and Health Organic Market...but my first health-food-store love is and always will remain that standard bearer and fore-runner of them all, the Food Conspiracy Co-op.

Evaluation: Extraordinarily sincere

412 North 4th Avenue
Tucson, AZ 85705-8443

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