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A Visit to..., Reducing waste by reducing packaging

A Visit to… Golden Ears Cheese Works

I would rather have a little bit of wonderful local food than a lot of mass-produced food.

On Friday after school, me and the kids went to Golden Ears Cheese Works in search of local, zero-waste cheese. Coming prepared for zero, or close to zero, waste shopping is essential. We had three clean Rubbermaid containers and a cloth. I let the employees know what my goal is. That is very much the key to whether I will be successful in reducing waste. Then comes the fun part – cheese shopping! When deciding what cheese to buy I mentioned about being interested in the quark but thought I probably couldn’t get it in my container. My friend described quark like as if sour cream and cream cheese had a baby. They came up with an idea to help me get the quark (I love saying the name out loud). Quark had just been made so they measured it into their own containers and transferred it into mine. My belief is that they refilled the containers for future use. I hope… I also chose a cranberry gouda and a jalapeno jack goat cheese. The waste for those was two pieces of wax paper and two price stickers. This cheese shop makes its cheese from local milk. That’s what I came for but I because easily distracted by all their other stuff. I ended up also buying a baguette in a paper-only sleeve and two banana chocolate chip gluten-free muffins. All of it was fantastic. There was some packaging but very little. Next time I hope to avoid the wax paper.Mmm… Friday night I dined on cheese and bread. Super delicious. Yum Yum!Then on Saturday after the farmers market I made some french toast using some of my local ingredients. Eggs from Never Say Die Nursery and that awesome loaf of bread.I’m never stingy with the vanilla in any recipe. I used this one… http://simplycooking.wordpress.com/2009/02/22/how-to-make-french-toast/.I topped our french toast with cinnamon and real maple syrup!On Earth day I made Leek soup with zero waste leeks and potatoes. Topped it with the quark.Here’s how I like eating my leek soup – with a bit of bacon! Also, I made whole wheat cheddar cheese biscuit.After my husband came home with packaged Rice Krispy treats a few weeks ago I vowed to make my own. They are really simple to make. Instead of using parchment paper I used natural soy wax paper.Next I will be making homemade granola bars. Wish me luck!


“But nothing worth having comes without some kind of fight. / Got to kick at the darkness until it bleeds daylight.” – Bruce Cockburn (Lovers in a dangerous time)


About stephanieough

Wife, mom, concerned citizen of the earth. Striving towards intentional living rather than blindly following. Former Education Specialist for a corporation, I have now taken a step back to spend time with my family and work closer to home. Hoping to reduce our waste through refusing, reducing and reusing so that we will not have to recycle as much. Also, I love to explore zero-waste fast food and take pictures of my sucesses. I'm a fan of British comedies like Red Dwarf and Black Adder, Kevin Smith and his movies, Asian food, documentaries, biographies and going to Las Vegas on vacation. If someone told me I could only listen to the Beatles for the rest of my life I would die happy.


7 thoughts on “A Visit to… Golden Ears Cheese Works

  1. Stephanie! It all looks delicious! Especially that cheese. So, sour cream and cream cheese had a baby. That made me laugh. I made homemade granola last night. It is so much easier than I thought it would be. I’ll never go back. Now, they weren’t bars, it was loose, but girl, it was SO good. The recipe called for 1 to 2 cups of sugar. I used 1/4 cup of honey and it was plenty sweet. I like that you can sweeten it like you want and as little as you want. Finally, I know what’s in my food, right? Good luck with the bars. Let us hear how they work out for you. If you get them down, I’ll try your recipe. I think the bars would be fun to eat!

    Posted by Jennifer | April 26, 2012, 9:51 am
    • I love homemade granola! It has endless possibilities. I have even used agave syrup as the sweetener. Agave syrup isn’t that great of an alternative to regular sugar but it’s called for in some Biggest Loser recipes so I have some kicking around until it’s all used up. I’d rather use honey 🙂

      Posted by stephanieough | April 26, 2012, 9:51 pm
      • I was all about the agave there for a while and then I did some disheartening research finds. 😦
        Like you, I’m going to use mine up and switch back to honey.
        Well, you live and learn, right?

        Posted by Jennifer | May 1, 2012, 10:19 am
      • I guess the lesson is just because it’s in the health food aisle doesn’t mean it’s healthy. I’m glad to know I wasn’t the only one conned. I made the bars and will be posting about them soon.

        Posted by stephanieough | May 2, 2012, 10:32 pm
      • No, you’re definately not the only one who got duped. Looking forward to those bars. So, they were yummy?

        Posted by Jennifer | May 4, 2012, 1:25 pm
  2. These look delicious.

    Posted by subtlekate | April 26, 2012, 7:15 pm

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