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20
Jul

Granola Bites by the Organic Pantry Co.

For plant-based eaters who prefer a farmer’s market over an outdoor vegan fest, please know I get it. It’s not that vegan foods are bad, although there are certainly a lot of unhealthy ones out there, its that far too often these products contain oil, refined sugar, syrups, or other undesirable sweeteners, too much sodium, or ingredients that I can’t pronounce.

If most of your diet is whole food plant-based then very few commercially prepared foods are on your pantry’s shelf or in the refrigerator or freezer because finding really stellar products – foods made with top notch ingredients without all the additives, and that taste great – is tough (there is just no getting around being vigilant and reading labels).

Every once in a while, a truly great product is introduced (and it feels like a reward when you find it), which is the case with Granola Bites by the Organic Pantry Co. Granola Bites are tasty pieces of granola (almost like small cookies) with mulberries (Cashew, Date & Mulberry) or coconut and raisins (Coconut, Cacao, and Raisin) : Read more »

18
Jul

Executive Compensation at the March of Dimes (2017)

2017 was a year of changes for the March of Dimes beginning on the first day of the year when Stacey D Stewart became the non-profit’s new President and CEO (after Jennifer Howse retired after 26 years with the organization). For the first time in several years, the March of Dimes did not spend more ($152 million) than they raised ($164 million) but the organization still remained in a negative net asset or negative fund balance position. Although the $12 million of unspent revenue would supposedly help reduce the negative $13 million net fund balance, there were $7 million in net unrealized losses on investments and $3 million in changes to assets as a result of higher pension costs. All of which means, the March of Dimes is still in a negative net asset or negative net fund balance of $11 million.  Better than last year ($13 million) but still not in a positive position. Read more »

16
Jul

Executive Compensation at the Nature Conservancy (2017)

The Nature Conservancy, a non-profit 501 (c) (3) based in Arlington, Virginia whose purpose is to conserve water and land, continues to spend less than the organization raises (in 2017, $1.2 billion in revenue – a 20% increase over 2016 – while only $900 million in expenses were reported (they basically spent $77 out of every $100 in revenue reported) and grow the endowment which increased from $6.2 billion at the beginning of the year to $6.6 billion at year-end while increasing staff (in 2015, the organization reported having 3,875 employees while in 2017, the Nature Conservancy reported having 4,099 employees). Read more »

14
Jul

The Coconut Sugar Peanut Butter Cup

The peanut butter cup is one of America’s fave treats for good reason: rich, creamy peanut butter enrobed in luscious chocolate is an unbeatable combination loved by adults and children alike. There’s really nothing quite like a peanut butter cup, especially one made by Eat Chic Chocolates of Brooklyn, New York.

The company’s classic peanut butter cup – the Peanut Butter Cup with Sea Salt (made with 71% dark chocolate) – is exquisite but its the Coconut Sugar Peanut Butter Cup that’s garnering lots of attention. Why you ask? Because this peanut butter cup has only 2 grams of sugar (unrefined coconut sugar) per peanut butter cup (compared to 8 grams in the same sized Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup).

The Coconut Sugar Peanut Butter Cup is a healthier and more delicious version of the quintessential peanut butter cup, especially if your passion is for dark chocolate and a peanut butter cup that isn’t overly sweet.

These peanut butter cups are made with 3 major ingredients:

Read more »

12
Jul

Organic Pantry Flaxseed Crackers

As a general rule, I prefer to make my food from fresh, organic ingredients but when a company makes a truly great product (meaning the ingredients are excellent and the flavor is exceptional), I am thrilled to save the time and effort it takes to make something from scratch like dark chocolate (Dr-Cow, Pascha chocolate chips), kombucha (GT’s), beans (Eden), nut milk (Milkadamia), nut butters (CB’s, Nuttzo), pesto (Seggiano), potato chips (José Andrés) and most recently, crackers (The Organic Pantry Flaxseed Crackers). Read more »

10
Jul

Executive Compensation at Geisinger System Services

Geisinger System Services is a 501 (c) (3) that provides administrative management and other support services for the Geisinger health care system (which consists of dozens of non-profits that serve more than 3 million residents in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. With more than 32,000 employees in 13 hospital campuses, 2 research clinics, and other health provider services, the Geisinger health care system is on of the largest healthcare providers in the Pennsylvania/South Jersey area.

The focus of this post is on the executive compensation at Geisinger System Services (GSS) only.  For the year ending June 30, 2017, GSS reported employing 5,420 individuals who received $329 million in compensation which equates to an average compensation of approximately $61,000.  343 employees received more than $100,000 in compensation with the 29 most highly compensated employees listed below: Read more »

8
Jul

Oat Bars

One of the challenges of eating a plant-based diet is finding ways to make desserts with little or no oil and no refined sugar. But, the challenge is deeper than that because a truly nutritious treat is also about what is included. Ideally, ingredients that stand alone as nutritious and delicious.

I started with a recipe called Pumpkin Seed and Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Breakfast Bars by Dreena Burton and adapted the ingredients to come up with a recipe for Oat Bars that contain whole grain oats, whole grain oat flour, seeds, nuts, spices, date syrup, dark chocolate chips, and non-dairy milk.  Basically, these bars are whole-grain and plant-based with no dairy, no oil, no refined sugar, and no eggs.

Oat Bars have a base of rolled oats and oat flour whose flavor is enhanced with what I call “the big 3” – pumpkin seeds, walnuts, and dark chocolate chips.  The big 3 are simply three wholesome ingredients that are super tasty together. But, if you find raisins, walnuts, and sunflower seeds more to your liking, make a substitution. Read more »

6
Jul

Dr-Cow Raw Chocolate Bricks

One of the great benefits of following a plant-based diet is enjoying dark chocolate whose subtle differences in taste, texture, and aroma become more pronounced over time.  Acquiring a taste for dark chocolate evolves but once you’ve come to appreciate the purity and intensity of dark chocolate, you’ll never want to eat milk chocolate ever again. The difference is really that striking.

Dr-Cow, a small storefront in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn is known for making organic, raw, dairy-free, egg-free, gluten-free, and soy-free food products, especially tree nut cheese, granola, biscotti, crackers, desserts, and chocolates. Read more »

4
Jul

Where Does $100 to the American Lung Association Go?

The American Lung Association (ALA) was established more than 100 years ago (1918) initially to fight tuberculosis but expanded its mission to improve lung health and preventing lung disease through research, education, and advocacy.

Specifically, ALA works to “defeat” lung cancer, “improve” the air we breathe, “reduce” the burden of lung disease on individuals and families, and “eliminate” tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. To do this, the organization relies on staff (626 people) so the organization is a non-profit (a 501 (c) (3)) that provides services more than a grant maker (ALA made $8 million in grants in 2018). Read more »

2
Jul

Executive Compensation at the American Lung Association

In 2017, the American Lung Association (ALA) underwent big changes when the eight charter and national boards voted to unite the organization into a single nationwide organization. A 501 (c) (3) based in Chicago, Illinois, the ALA raised about $108 million in 2018, spent $104 million (primarily on compensation, fees for services, direct mail, and office-related expenses), and had about $148 million in net fund assets (think savings account) at year-end.

The ALA reported having 626 employees in 2018 who were compensated nearly $46 million, which equates to an average compensation of $74,500.  30 employees received more than $100,000 in compensation with the 18 most highly compensated employees listed below: Read more »