By Ellen Kozak, Milwaukee Grocery Examiner
The Balistreri owned and operated Sendik’s food markets have brought back their “Seven Days, Seven Ways to Save” promotion, but this fall, it’s with a twist. This time the stores are partnering with Turbana, a fair trade tropical fruit supplier, to bring you midweek fruit specials that also benefit the hungry.
The special sales for each of the five week days will recur every week of the promotion. On Mondays, Boar’s Head Ovengold turkey and maple ham will be available for $5.99 a pound (limited to three pounds of each). On Tuesdays, Sendik’s “Natural” ground chuck is $2.99 a pound (with a six-pound limit). Wednesdays, you can buy up to five pounds of Turbana bananas for 29¢ a pound and up to four Fyffes pineapples at $2 each. Thursdays, you can purchase gallon cartons of an variety of Sendik’s milk (including chocolate) for $2.50 each (there’s a limit of two). And Fridays you can get fresh wild-caught Alaska coho salmon filets for $8.99 a pound. (The Saturday and Sunday specials will change from week to week.)
It’s that Wednesday special that is not only good for your pocketbook but also helps the hungry. Sendik’s and Turbana have joined together to contribute to Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin, a nonprofit food bank. Every Wednesday during the promotion, Sendik’s and Turbana will donate $1 to Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin for every two Fyffes pineapples that are purchased at all twelve of the Sendik’s stores.
Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin distributes more than 22 million pounds of food a year to more than a thousand pantries, meal programs, and other non-profits. They are able to serve over 330,000 people in Eastern Wisconsin. This promotion began September 3rd, and was originally scheduled to end October 22nd, but Sendik’s and Turbana are so excited about the promotion that they have extended it through the fall.
Sendik’s food markets have a large local presence that dates back nearly a century. In 1926, the Balistreri family, from Sicily, began peddling fruits and vegetables from a horse-drawn wagon. The quality of their produce attracted so many customers that they eventually opened brick-and-mortar stores on Downer and Oakland Avenues on Milwaukee’s East Side. (The name “Sendik’s” comes from an immigrant’s corruption of the words, “Send it.”) The stores are now located in Bayside, Elm Grove, Franklin, Germantown, Grafton, Greenfield, Hartland, Mequon, New Berlin, Wauwatosa, West Bend, and Whitefish Bay.
Turbana came into being when a number of Colombian formed a cooperative known as Uniban. In 1970, Uniban formed the Turbana company and began to export fruit directly to the United States. They are committed to their community, to quality products, and to fair business dealings. “Vertical integration is one of our company’s most important differentiator’s,” they note. “It gives us the power to control the entire production process” from harvesting to packaging, shipping and quality control, “and everything before, after, and in between.” Their products include bananas, baby bananas, red bananas, pineapples and plantains as well as aloe vera, tropical sweet potatoes known as batatas, chayote, yucca, yams, and several other tropical fruits.
Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin is dedicated to feeding the hungry to 36 counties in the eastern half of Wisconsin, from the border with Illinois to as far north as Vilas County, and from Lake Michigan to as far west as Taylor County. They distribute food to the hungry free of charge.