Duck Soup Co-op

DeKalb, Illinois

3.9 / 1 vote

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Member-owned co-op, open to the public, with bulk foods, organic produce, cruelty-free body care products and vitamins.


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Added on Apr 18 08 (last updated Jan 30)

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This is a small health food co-op, with some produce, bulk bins, bulk spices, a small frozen food section, refrigerated section, pantry goods, some personal care products, arts and crafts, whole-bean coffee, and vitamins. They also have a wide collection of recent back issues of Vegetarian Times, available for half off cover price, and fair trade chocolate bars/honey-based chocolates near the checkout counter. They cram a fair amount into a little store. While anyone is welcome to shop here, it's possible to become a member (working or non-working). This is the only health food co-op I've ever frequented that makes it difficult to be a member; you can't hand over your twenty bucks but have to sit through a
90 minute lecture on Our History and Why Co-Ops are Good. These are scheduled 2 or 3 times a month and can be specially scheduled if you ask.
Paying $25 for a nonworking membership means you get coupons once a month and get 12 chits per year worth 5% off your order. People who actually work a couple of hours a week at the store can get 10% off; I don't recall the details. If you're willing to sit through the lecture and support them, more power to you. It's probably not worth it for a nonworking member, though I'm glad I gave them my money. Some of the prices are excellent; some are a bit overpriced compared to Whole Foods or Trader Joe's. Of course, DeKalb doesn't have a WF or TJ's, though the local Schnuck's now carries some of the same items, such as the Amy's frozen dinners. If you're looking for hardcore health food such as Sucanat, though, the local Schnuck's can't compete. The bulk kalamata olives and the bulk honey are very good deals; the whole bean fair trade coffee is is the cheapest I've found (bring a coffee bag; they charge 25 cents for one) and some of the specials are worth picking up. I've had very bad luck with the rennet-free cheese; the gruyere was unrecognizable as such and the next type I picked up was no good either. I avoid the refrigerated cheeses now. They keep a store of plastic shopping bags, so don't fret if you forget to bring yours. Open Sundays.

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