The above information will be used only by Outpost Natural Foods for the express purpose of sending an e-newsletter. Outpost shopper information is never shared with other organizations or businesses.

See what’s happening at your local co-op - Sign up for the Outpost Newsletter!

Not a user yet? Sign up Now  |  Forget your password? Click here
Your Board

Hi, I'm Your Board

Outpost's Board of Directors will use this blog to discuss issues the board is exploring as it envisions Outpost's future. Can't make it to a meeting? Check here frequently to read what the Board is up to. Your current Outpost Board of...
Your Board

One Word: Plastics

Board Beet
By Your Board on July 31, 2012




Looking back through history, we see various “ages,” such as Iron, Bronze, Enlightenment, and the depressingly and aptly named, Dark. How will history look back at our present age? One answer may be the Age of Plastic. Looking around us, and how our way of life has changed in the past 100 years, it would be difficult to argue that this isn’t the Age of Plastic. If you still need convincing, walk around your house, your neighborhood, or your grocery store. Envision this walk without any plastic. Going even further, image life after this walk without all this plastic, and think what life would be like. 


One of the duties of each Board member is to bring topics to the rest of the Board that help us envision the future. These may be in the form of an article, book or film, and often encompass things that others are doing that Outpost could learn from, or current issues that are relevant to Outpost and us as owners.


Recently, my wife Christel brought home the movie “Plastic Planet,” in which Werner Boote decided to explore why plastics in our world are everywhere, who is making all of this plastic, what exactly do we know about all this Plastic, and where it eventually ends up. Werner’s grandfather was an early pioneer in the plastics industry in Europe, and Werner began to look at how he was a boy who got the most awesome (plastic, of course) toys in the neighborhood, to a man wondering what all this plastic means to our health and our planet.


What did Werner find? That plastic has made it into every area of our lives. In toys, appliances, everyday items we take for granted, and many things we don’t even think about or see. Things as mundane as board games to ones as critical as an emergency room visit. Who is making this plastic?  It is made by some of the largest companies in the world. What do we know about it?  Unsettlingly, very little and then only what the same companies let us know. Where does all of the plastic eventually go? It goes to landfills for sure, but also into our oceans, and of more concern, into our bodies.


I learned from early on in my career as a CPA that knowing the answer isn’t the most important thing, but recognizing that there is a question, is. Outpost doesn’t have the answers to all the questions coming from Plastic Planet, but does recognize that we as owners need to be aware of issues, and is diligent in pursuing ways to make us more aware and healthier.


My main reason why I shop at Outpost is trust (OK, second is that the food is delicious). On this issue, I trust Outpost is looking out for our health, and to get closer to the answer to the “plastics” question.


- Board member Terry Rindt


co-op stronger together
Outpost is part of an international movement. Learn all about cooperatives now.

Archived Columns