– “Northwest producers get support from Whole Foods to sell home-grown products in stores”
By Craig Sailor, Tacoma’s News Tribune:
“The chain, which opens its Chambers Bay store in University Place on Thursday [today, May 14], sells only natural products with no artificial colorings, flavorings or preservatives.
Though Whole Foods is the largest natural and organic grocer in the world (by number of products sold), it puts a strong emphasis on local produce and products.”
“The eggs laid by the chickens at Stiebrs Farms in Yelm haven’t gotten any bigger in the 60-plus years the family has been in the business.
But their flock has.
Jon Stiebrs and his father started with 100 hens in 1953. The family now has 500,000, with each hen laying about one egg a day.
Jon’s children, Yany Stiebrs and Ania Edwards, run the Yelm business with Yany’s wife, Sara. Parents Jon and Dianna still have a hand in the business, which employs 115 people.
Stiebrs produces and markets about a dozen types of eggs. That might come as surprise to those who think “brown” and “white” are the only choices in grocery stores.
‘We started the whole cage free, certified organic, humane era in the mid-’90s,’ Yany said. They began the practice when customers started asking for it.
Like many aspects of the food industry, it’s a return to how things used to be done.”