40 Years, 40 Reasons to Love Lakewinds

For 40 years, Lakewinds has been honored to serve and be a part of our local community. As your local co-op, we are grateful for the support of the people who shop at our locations, our 20,000-plus member-owners and staff.

As we mark our 40th anniversary, we’re taking time to reflect on what we do well and how we can further improve. Here we’re celebrating our successes and hope you’ll enjoy them too—with our 40 reasons to love Lakewinds.

  1. We support local farmers, their families and communities, giving preference to local growers whenever possible.
  2. We encourage sustainable practices.
  3. Our organic field fund grants help farmers fund projects around adopting organic practices, obtaining certification and implementing other initiatives.
  4. We’re happy to share with you our favorite recipes for and information about kale, quinoa, millet, fennel—we love food like it’s our job. Because it is!
  5. You can skip reading ingredients listings—if a product is in our stores, it’s been thoroughly researched and vetted to ensure it follows our high product standards.
  6. Our products never contain artificial colors. Or flavors. Or preservatives.
  7. You will not find conventionally grown “Dirty Dozen” produce in our stores.
  8. We’re a democratic, member-controlled local co-op.
  9. During our most recent fiscal year, we donated more than $115,000 to the local community.
  10. Our products are free of hydrogenated fats and high fructose corn syrup.
  11. Our staff members are encouraged to express themselves, wear their own clothing and embrace their individuality, which creates a welcoming, come-as-you are vibe.
  12. Our meat department is intelligently sourced, emphasizing natural products, the ethical treatment of animals and sustainable practices.
  13. We love educating, training and informing people of all ages and backgrounds about the food they eat and products they use. (If we’re overly exuberant, feel free to just smile at us and walk by.)
  14. We focus on local produce, which is allowed to ripen on plants so tastes better and has more nutritional value than produce that’s been shipped a great distance.
  15. Members of our staff are experts in their area and happy to share their knowledge—without being preachy. If they don’t know the answer, they’ll find someone who does.
  16. You’ll never find parabens in our beauty products.
  17. Our “leftovers” go to local food shelves, such as the ICA, VEAP and PROP.
  18. You can get our local, organic co-op products delivered to your door via Instacart, for just $3.99 for orders over $50, almost everywhere within the 494/694 area.
  19. Our products won’t contain added hormones, including BST (growth hormone).
  20. Our buyers give preference to organic, local products and those with minimal packaging.
  21. Eggs in our local co-ops come from cage-free, vegetarian-fed hens that are never given antibiotics and are raised on local, family-owned farms.
  22. A number of our products have inspiring missions, such as supporting women in Africa (Alaffia Sustainable Skin Care) and teaching kids to wash hands to prevent fatal diseases (Pacha Soap).
  23. As your local co-op, we continuously seek out the best locally grown, locally produced, locally crafted discoveries for you to enjoy. Locally.
  24. Our milk products are produced without artificial growth hormones, including rBGH.
  25. We donate organic seeds to a number of organizations that grow food in their gardens and provide fresh produce to those in need.
  26. Our seafood follows the recommendations set by the Monteray Bay Aquarium program, and we never source seafood that is endangered or threatened by overfishing.
  27. Throughout the year, our produce department averages 85% organic!
  28. As a proud sponsor of Right to Know Minnesota, we support transparency in food labeling, including for products with GMO and non-GMO ingredients.
  29. Food from the deli is made from scratch every day, using local, seasonal and organic ingredients to the extent possible.
  30. Body care products are free of artificial fragrances and were developed without any animal testing, unless required by law.
  31. Educating our community is important to us. Groups of 15 people or fewer can schedule a local co-op tour, or we can travel to groups’ locations.
  32. We respect dietary concerns and food allergies, offering a large selection of products that are gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian and vegan.
  33. Our bulk bin aisle is a great place to save money and reduce packaging. It’s full of staples, such as flour and beans, and unique treats, such as chocolate-covered caramels and toffee-covered almonds. And yes—you have our permission to hide those from your children. Or coworkers. Or roommates.
  34. We offer thousands of products that are produced locally.
  35. Kids under the age of 12 in our Co+op Explorers program receive a free banana when they visit the store.
  36. Kombucha on tap. Enough said!
  37. We have more than 1,500 gluten-free items.
  38. When you need spices, you can buy just the amount you need in the bulk bin. You can also purchase a variety of extracts and oils in bulk.
  39. We have three local co-op locations—Minnetonka, Chanhassen and Richfield.
  40. Our mission is to provide the highest quality natural and organic products at a good value.

There you have it—40 years and 40 reasons to love Lakewinds. If we missed one of the many reasons you love Lakewinds Food Co-op, please leave a comment below. We’d love to hear why you love your local co-op!

As Lakewinds marks 40 years, we hope you can celebrate with us. On Saturday, September 19, join us for live music, treats and deals on many of your favorite products throughout the store from 11 am to 3 pm (while supplies last). Hope to see you there!