BREAD

ingredients

at iggy's we choose to buy only the highest-quality ingredients, because we want to feel proud of our products and make the best breads that we possibly can.  the ingredients that we purchase are all-natural always and organic whenever possible.  our choices are made with the planet and the people in mind, as we work to nurture health for both.

for us, best-quality means the purest, most natural, least processed products available. we know that it is less expensive to buy canned peppers than it is to maintain a kitchen staff to slice and roast them ourselves.  but we believe that the quality makes this practice worthwhile.

our first choice is to get organic, local, in-season ingredients.  because we are located in new england, it is not always possible to buy produce from local growers.  and while we have been wanting to create a 100% organic bakery, so far we have not been able to do so while also keeping our prices as low as possible.  we are constantly trying to balance using high-quality ingredients with keeping our breads affordable.

our focus in making food purchases is on companies with small production and distribution.  we love to support local farmers because we admire the role that they play in building and maintaining community.   we seek out small businesses and companies to work with who share our value of protecting the planet.  we want the purchases that we make to reflect our deepest values.  our own process of baking bread is slow: it takes us two days to mix, proof, and bake bread; three days for croissants.  we know that we could do it faster, but our quality would suffer.  we seek partnership with other businesses that take the time necessary to produce high-quality products.  we want warm encounters with our distributors.  these are the factors that affect the decisions we make when buying ingredients for our breads.

in addition to buying high quality ingredients, we also give special care to the water that is used for making our doughs.  the water line used for mixing runs through two filters.  the first is a fairly conventional filter, which eliminates toxins and bacteria.  the second filter was designed by an austrian scientist.  according to his research, water retains an energetic memory pattern, influenced by its surroundings.  much of the water on our planet has been damaged energetically by pollution.  in order to help redevelop the life force of the  water that comes into our bakery, this second filter is filled with healthy austrian spring water.  the water passing through our pipes picks up the life force of this spring water and comes into the bakery with renewed life force.

ultimately, we are constantly seeking new ways to improve our products, to find ingredients that are healthier for our planet and for the people who choose to eat our bread.

old world style baking

there is something magical about old-world style bread: the strong golden crust, the moist airy center.  there is a skill and attention necessary to create a bread like that.  in days gone by, bread was made by hand from start to finish, with special attention given to gentle handling and expert timing.  while we do use machines and modern equipment to facilitate our baking process, our goal is to maintain the fine craftsmanship necessary to produce a wonderful bread.

ever since we started, igor has been focused on buying only the best equipment (mixers, ovens, etc.).  for him, buying the right oven is much like an artist choosing the finest tools for her craft.   we have chosen to work with companies that make their equipment with the same pride that we have when we make our bread.

even though the use of machines is a modern addition to the bread making process, they afford us the ability to handle the dough less.  the less the bread is manipulated, the more it is able to retain air, moisture, and shape.  even with the use of machines for mixing, many of our breads are still cut by hand.

we honor and respect the time it takes to make good bread. our long fermentation and proofing times allow our doughs to develop in flavor and texture. at iggy's we do not rush our bread to the oven.

clean and happy hands

in our bakery, we start with a basis of cleanliness, of our bodies, our equipment, and our facilities.  because bread cannot be washed, we approach our work with the highest care to maintaining a clean baking process.

in addition to this physical cleanliness, we work to foster an environment of positive energy for the bread.  this we call the philosophy of "happy hands."  throughout the day, we work with fresh ingredients, food that is carrying the life force and energy of the earth.  when we roast peppers or chop rosemary for our focaccia, when we mould and shape the dough, when we sell a loaf to a customer, the energy that we use becomes a part of the food.  when people then eat our bread, this energy enters their bodies.  this belief, inspired by the teachings of macrobiotics, inspires in us an even greater sense of responsibility to the food that we are making, to the people who will eat it.

we hope to create an environment for our bread, and for the people who make and serve our bread, that fosters serenity, presence, harmony, and respect.  for the people who work here, a big part of our lives is spent in the bakery.  we honor the complexity of life, and we know that conflict sometimes enters the bakery.  if someone comes to work with a conflict from home, we hope to help them place that conflict respectfully in a safe place that will not harm the bread.  if conflict arises between co-workers, we spend time to work through the disharmony.  it is our experience that conflict eventually shows itself in how we use our hands, and this affects the bread.  it is our longing to treat each piece of bread as though it were a precious gift being given to a child, and we want to work with people who share this sense of mission. we want to encourage and inspire people to work with this ideal.  the bakery, like all parts of our lives, is a place to practice our values of caring and respect.

COMMUNITY

biodiesel

in 2008, iggy's purchased a 49 kW biodiesel co-generation unit, which makes electricity and, as a by-product, heat

"biodiesel is the name of a clean burning alternative fuel, produced from domestic, renewable resources. biodiesel contains no petroleum, but it can be blended at any level with petroleum diesel to create a biodiesel blend. it can be used in compression-ignition (diesel) engines with little or no modifications. biodiesel is simple to use, biodegradable, nontoxic, and essentially free of sulfur and aromatics.

biodiesel is better for the environment because it is made from renewable resources and has lower emissions compared to petroleum diesel. it is less toxic than table salt and biodegrades as fast as sugar. since it is made in the USA from renewable resources such as soybeans, its use decreases our dependence on foreign oil and contributes to our own economy."

-from www.biodiesel.org

we are are working with a local company which makes bio-fuel out of waste vegetable and animal fats, and we hope to be able to use biodiesel in the coming years to fuel iggy's vans, as well

solar

in april of 2014, iggy's completed phase one of its *solar project* - a 65 kW system installed on a newly erected carport structure in front of the bakery, as well the garage roof… we are hoping to complete phase two, consisting of close to 30 kW in additional solar panels on the second garage roof within the following twelve months! 

you can join us in following our solar energy production here: http://www.powerdash.com/systems/1006612/

customer service

wishes of the company to make service just as important as the bread.  the hand that delivers the bread, that gives the bread, the person that answers the phone.  creating links, supporting community.  living the mission. not a wall between us and the community.  daily active role.  how we drive.  how we represent and present ourselves in the world.  at every step, what we do has an impact on people.

donations

our bakery is able to thrive and grow because of the support and encouragement of our local community.  without the customers who visit our store, or the wholesale companies who continue to purchase our bread for their restaurants, cafes, and grocery stores, we would not be able to survive.

we feel honored to be a part of this community, and in return we enjoy finding ways to return the support we receive.

throughout the year, we receive requests from local schools, churches, and non-profit organizations, for bread donations to their fundraisers and special events.  whenever possible, we honor the requests of our neighbors for support by donating extra bread from our store, or baking bread especially for their event.

we have also been working to reduce the amount of bread waste we produce by setting up donations to local food pantries and soup kitchens.  dedicated staff from these organizations pick up bread leftover at the end of the night in our store, and redistribute it to members of the community in need of nourishment.

local agriculture

we believe wholeheartedly in the role that small farms play in maintaining the environment and the community.  whenever possible, we purchase our produce from local farmers, allowing us to use the freshest, most in-season ingredients while supporting the value of the family farm.

we also save our leftover kitchen scraps, any food that has fallen on the floor, and any bread leftover in our store after donations have been made.  we store it all in large containers for two local farmers who pick up the "compost" or use it as feed for their pigs.

we believe that this kind of mutual support closes the circle of production and waste in a very satisfying, environmentally friendly way.

natural cleaning products

as part of our work to care for the planet, we have researched the effects of chemical cleaning products, both on the people who use them and on the environment at large.  we have chosen to replace most of our chemical cleaning products (keeping only those required by the FDA) with natural alternatives.  in looking for new products, we used the following guidelines.

* biodegradable: break down readily in nature, causing no harmful side effects

* concentrated: requires less packaging, saving natural resources and reducing shipping emissions

* made with renewable ingredients: petroleum based products not only use non-renewable petroleum, but also cause harm to the people working in the refining plants

* cold water soluble: does not require hot water to be effective, reducing energy requirements

like the ingredients we choose to use in our breads, we have worked to find cleaning products as close to nature as possible.

recycling

recycling is a key element of our commitment to the environment.  we are acutely aware of the degree to which natural resources are being wasted and shipped unnecessarily to landfills.  we wish to take responsibility for the waste that we create.  the garbage can is not a place for things we do not want or use anymore.  there are several ways that we work to reduce our impact on the environment through recycling.

to begin with, we make every effort to re-use items in good condition.  for example, the cardboard boxes and paper that we use to deliver our breads to wholesale customers are picked up by our drivers on subsequent deliveries and re-used for future orders (provided the boxes/bags are clean and in tact).

we collect wax-covered produce boxes and save them for the farmers who deliver fresh fruits and vegetables to our store.  the boxes can then be re-used by the farmers for future orders.

for those items that we cannot re-use, we have adopted a color-coded recycling system throughout our bakery, including our mixing, baking, and packing rooms; our store; our kitchen; and our offices.  we recycle paper, metal, plastic, glass, and cardboard.  each type of recyclable has its own colored bin.  the bins, located throughout the facility, are emptied into large toters of the same color, making the process of recycling very simple.

food waste is also handled with care. bread that is leftover at the end of the day is packed up for local food pantries and homeless shelters.  food items that are not fit for people to eat (food that has fallen on the floor, excess dough, or kitchen scraps) are placed in large bins and saved for local farmers to feed their pigs.

it is our sincere hope to limit our waste as much as possible, to leave as light a footprint on the planet as possible through our business practices.

small business

we believe in small business.  though our bakery as certainly grown over the years, it is not our desire to spread out into the national market.  we do not wish to franchise or open bi-coastal operations.  we believe that it is important for every community to develop its own unique businesses, to meet the very special needs of local populations.

we feel it is very important, for businesses as well as customers to experience human contact and connection in their transactions.  we enjoy working with other small, local businesses because it draws us in as part of a community.  from the woman in the north end who hand-makes the mozzarella cheese we use on our sandwiches, to the farmer who grows the zucchini we roast for our pizza, it is important to us to know the people we are supporting with our purchases, and to develop a sense of shared purpose.

we believe that we vote with our money.  every choice we make as consumers sends a message about what we truly value.  the money we spend supports the businesses behind the products.  we are conscious that every time we purchase something from a company, we are supporting that business and their values.

the people who work at iggy's

at iggy's, we are devoted to creating a nurturing environment for our employees.  we are always seeking to understand how to be support those who make our bakery possible.

when we first began, we did not offer health insurance, but instead we provided holistic health care, including massage, shiatsu, and other forms of natural healing.  as time passed, we came to realize how much our employees wanted more traditional benefits, and now the money once spent on holistic healing goes toward medical, dental, life insurance, and retirement programs, because that is what employees wanted more.  the longer someone works for the bakery, the more their benefits increase.

it is our desire to help all of our employees continue to grow and develop as individuals, and to create an environment for people to be part of a larger family.  as a part of this mission, we pay for english classes. we try to find opportunities for those who are dedicated and hard-working to advance.  for example, one of our former cleaners is now our head baker.  and we create opportunities to socialize, to connect, and interact.  soccer games and parties are events that represent community.

finally, communication is very important to us.  our human resources director offers a bridge between employees and managers.  6 month eevaluations, group meetings by departments to discuss issues.  social events-soccer, parties, to interact, connect, be together.  events that represent the community.  translating documentation in as many languages as possible.  newsletter.  creating an environment where people can be supported.

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