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Meet the Wild Thyme Team

April 9, 2018


Our social media is constantly filled with Wild Thyme Wholefoods’ new vegan products; one off deals; events and menus, but rarely do you see the masterminds behind it all. Wild Thyme is a not-for-profit worker cooperative, meaning that the members of the team have an equal say and responsibility in the running of the business and make our decisions by consensus. We are a hard-working family; constantly maintaining and tinkering with the 24-hour machine that is Wild Thyme Wholefoods. Keeping things fresh and innovative in our independent co-op sets us aside from the corporate, zero-personality supermarkets. This requires busy, creative minds with a desire for change and a separation from the normal dynamic of capitalist construct.

 

Within Wild Thyme’s current lifespan, co-op members have come and gone, some have remained and some have joined. Without this glorious community of people, Wild Thyme would have never thrived and become what it is today.

 

It’s about time that we appreciate and virtually meet these crazy, strong-willed individuals!
 

 

Pip
 

How would you describe yourself? Challenging yet lovable!
What makes you tick? Music / Art / Sports / Ferrets / Cats / Gaming / Nature / Food / Tech / DIY

How long have you worked at Wild Thyme? 4 years

What made you join the cooperative? I had been aware of Wild Thyme, as friends of mine (Fran and Stu) would tell me about it. At this point, I had been working as a self-employed graphic designer for about 5 years, which was causing me nasty RSI, so I was looking to change occupation and a vacancy came up! Passionate about ethical living and wanting to contribute to something positive in the community, it seemed like a most unmissable opportunity.

In your opinion, what are the best three things about Wild Thyme?

1. The crew
2. It’s vegan/ethical
3. Cakes/food

Favorite Wild Thyme Product(s)? Goldenberries, Mrs B’s Kombucha & Amor’s chocolate mousse cakes.

What is your signature cake? Choc Chip Hazelnut Cookies, Avocado Ganche Cake & Chocolate Avocado Cake!

 

Kelly
 

How would you describe yourself? Quite loud and outgoing, always full of ideas and generally really busy with loads of different projects!
How long have you worked at Wild Thyme? 4 years

What makes you tick? I’m also a musician and love to surf or generally be in or near the sea.

What made you join the Cooperative? I’ve been part of co-operatives before (I was Youth Director at Plymouth Musician’s Co-op and also volunteered at the Cowley Club in Brighton) and the structure and autonomy of being part of a co-op is appealing to me. Also, it’s a great alternative to conventional capitalism (which I see as being deeply flawed).

In your opinion, what are the best three things about Wild Thyme?

1. The other co-op members
2. Our customers
3. An ethical policy I fully support.
… If I can add another thing on then it would be the produce, I do a lot of the buying for the shop and sourcing new products is my fave bit of the job!

Favorite Wild Thyme product? I’m a tofu addict - Clearspot organic tofu is so versatile and a great texture. I cook with it a lot in the Wild Thyme kitchen and at home. Also, I love Kombucha and the Profusion Turmeric Kombucha is amazing. Just also want to give a shout out to our juices which me make fresh on our takeaway, I say the more vegetable based a juice the better but I think some people might disagree.

What is your signature dish? African Peanut Soup!

 

Stu

How long have you worked at Wild Thyme? I am a founding member of Wild Thyme.

What makes you tick?  Walking along Southsea seafront, spending time with my son, trying (and failing) to find some energy to get involved again in environmental and class struggle campaigning.

How long have you worked at Wild Thyme? Since the very first meeting, when a group of people came together to see if we could start a new worker co-op in Portsmouth (about 5 years ago)

What made you join the Cooperative? I worked in a similar set up in the 90’s, and discovered then that it is possible to go to work without getting a sinking feeling in my stomach - I wanted to feel like that again...

In your opinion, what are the best three things about Wild Thyme?

1. It’s a worker co-op!  Which means so many things, but primarily it is an opportunity for people who work here to be in control of their own workplace (without having to have access to large amounts of capital).

2. We’re a small independent, trying to show Portsmouth that there is an alternative to the dominance of the supermarkets.

3. And unlike the supermarkets, maximising profit is not our primary purpose.  Which means we have the freedom to do many interesting things, some of which are actually good for the planet.

Favourite Wild Thyme product? All the lovely fresh organic veggies!

 

Joel
 

How would you describe yourself? Despite popular rumor, I’m not always grumpy. I just wear a lot of black and have that sort of face.

What makes you tick? I'm really into music and will happily talk about it for hours (customers, if I ever get into a chat with you about a band or something and you just want to do your shopping, apologies!) I play guitar and try to play everything else too, with varying degrees of success.

What made you join the Cooperative? After trudging through a bunch of fairly unrewarding and depressing jobs, I was finally determined to get out of that system and captain my own ship, so the chance to join Wild Thyme was something I leapt at. On top of that, the support offered within the co-op is an amazing thing to be part of- both professionally and personally. It would have been very easy to be overpowered by the responsibilities that suddenly came with running a business and committing to existence away from a prescribed sort of life is of course quite a challenge as well, but the friendship and team spirit in Wild Thyme is like nothing else I've ever known.

In your opinion, what are the best three things about Wild Thyme?

1. I'm constantly awed by the creativity that goes into so many different parts of our business, from the food we make to the displays we build, to the plans we put together to do events.
2. I'm also a massive fan of the team ethic that's come together so effortlessly - no problem seems too big and we're always encouraging each other to grow and progress.
3. I'd be an absolute liar if I didn't say that being constantly surrounded by delicious vegan food wasn't pretty much the best. There are no bad days at a job where you have constant access to cake.

Favorite Wild Thyme product? Some of the main meals we've done have blown my mind, and I've definitely wanted to intercept a lot of the cakes as they make their way from the kitchen, but ultimately give me a Vego and a glass of Oatly and we're good. Although I do like the melty Violife. And the One Planet pizzas! Perhaps I should say the Tropical Green smoothie to try to sound healthy?

 

 

Fran
 

What makes you tick? Things that motivate and inspire me - being around other passionately compassionate people, issues relating to peace, justice and freedom for people, planet and animals! Art, poetry, earth-based spirituality, sitting round a fire under the stars, walking in nature with my dog... Walking 1000 miles in 2018 for Samaritans and recycling 1000 bottles along the way - join the 1000 Less challenge!

How long have you worked at Wild Thyme? Since the start! I am a founding member of Wild Thyme.

In your opinion, what are the best three things about Wild Thyme?

1. I love that Wild Thyme is a Worker Co-Operative
2. Fully vegan
3. Considers everything from ethical principles as much as from commercial ones

Favorite Wild Thyme product? My favorite Wild Thyme product is between Rawr's organic lucuma raw cacao bar, and Raw Chocolate Co's Vanoffee bar (similar minus the lucuma and slightly sweeter & smoother tasting) as a treat that I have a bit too often!

What is your signature cake? My signature cakes are probably my raw cheesecakes, such as Turkish Delight, Mango & Ginger, Lemon Berry.

 

 

 

 

 

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