Saturday, 31 March 2007

Packing in Foil Pouches

Avoid spoilage by packing goods for long term storage.

When a bulk order arrives, some co-ops offer a packing date so that those interested can store their goods (less than 10% moisture or oil content) in foil pouches for the long term.

On these packing dates you're very welcome to bring other items that you need to pack i.e. items that were on special from the supermarket - rice, pasta, sugar or old food storage that has been stored in buckets.

You will be taught and encouraged to seal your own (we all help measure and fill the bags). In foil pouches with oxygen absorbers. This allows items like grain, pasta and rolled oats to last up to 30years. PLUS the bonus that any weevils, moths or other insects will not be able to survive.

FOIL POUCHES and OXYGEN ABSORBERS are available by mail order at cost price from the LDS church. You do NOT have to be a member to order these products or use the sealing machine. Contact us if you are interested in using this facility at

In most areas, one or more people have shared the price of the foil pouches so others purchase the amount they need on the day. However, I would encourage everyone to buy their own pack of oxygen absorbers for future use (or if you need to re-do a couple the next time).

Once sealed, lie the packets on the floor and flatten them as much as possible. They'll suck in slightly as they're left over night as the oxygen absorber works and then they'll be easier to store flat or upright in storage containers.

Storage boxes are necessary as the foil pouches are not rodent proof.

This pic has 9 pouches of flour in each tub to go in the garage or under our bed. That's almost 50kilos of flour just in these two tubs (which is 9 months flour storage for two adults in total)

The 'under the bed' tubs below are all full of wheat, wheat is so much heavier so I store a few pouches in smaller tubs so I can move them without getting a hernia.
It's alot easier to move house when they're already in boxes.

Items not suitable for foil pouch storage are those with over 10% moisture (scroll down the page to find it).

Co-op Bulk Buy

Group bulk buying scheme

Mission:  To enable community members to buy high quality health food at wholesale prices for personal use.


1.   Register with Co-op Stop Australia by emailing Suzi at Details she will need are:
  • Name
  • Suburb
  • Contact numbers
  • How you found out about us
  • Products you are interested in buying that are NOT in the current health food price list.
  • Confirmation that you have read the conditions of membership and agree to follow them By joining the Co-op you agree to the info and conditions given at the bottom of the blog.  Breaching these conditions will cancel your membership.
2.  How to order
  • Co-op members will receive an email from Suzi notifying the next purchase period and payment close date, plus any special offers etc.  Order form and price list will be attached.  Total is calculated automatically on the form and includes the 10% co-op charge and pickup fee).
  • This email will be sent roughly quarterly - ie first two weeks of Nov, Feb, May and August - within school terms.
  • Orders will be accepted in roughly the last two weeks of the month (ie purchase period stated above); when we receive your emailed order we'll reply with confirmation. If your order isn't received by c.o.b on the cut off date your order will not be included.
  • Payments by bank transfer or direct deposit will be accepted up until the last day of the payment close date. If you make an online transfer on the last day, email the bank receipt number and total amount and name to us so we know it's coming.
  • Each co-op is different, the larger areas, most dry goods come in 5kg/12.5kg sizes, though you can request to split amounts with others if you wish. Other areas accept small packet order. If you do wish to split an item, it must be organised amongst yourselves, with one person paying and picking it up.
  • You will be emailed again when the goods are ready to pick up, and you must collect within two days unless other arrangements have been made with the person accepting the delivery.
  • Expect to be able to help if you want to! No obligation, but always nice to have offers.
3.  Keep in touch. In between the quarterly orders, sometimes there may be an interim order for two reasons.
1. Eager beavers, desperate for something.  If you want something in between orders, liaise with Suzi who may be able to help
2. The minimum amount for an order is around 100kilos/approx $500. If the minimum isn't reached then it won't go ahead. Logistical costs are shared and automatically generated on the order spreadsheet.
4.  FEES - There are no annual or joining fees.  
  • Handling charge – 10% of order. This 10% covers time, effort and costs incurred. Any surplus from this or the logistical costs will be added to building a float for further bulk purchases that have to be paid for in advance (ie Honey, water tubs etc). This also keeps our long standing volunteer managers happy to be with us and helping! A small gift of gratitude that ensures the sustainability of our organisation. Since we are saving approx 60% on goods, this is a very small ask.
  • Logistical costs - Again, this differs according to your area, though logistical costs will be charged per kilo and automatically generated on your order spreadsheet.
5. From YOU
  • Refer to conditions of membership
  • Contribute the requested amount for logistical costs and 10% Co-op fee.
  • There are no annual or joining fees.
There isn't really much expected, other than to be courteous, abide by the conditions of membership, and you may be asked to pick up a friend's order or a neighbour’s if you're able. The name of the Co-op Stop can be a little misleading; we are more of a service, a community scheme that welcomes offers of help. We understand that there isn't much time to spare for young families or those with disabilities or special needs.  If however you are able to lend a hand at some point, please let us know.

I look forward to hearing from all of you!

EMAIL me at to join your local co-op distribution list.