1. Tell us about your business or organization in 10 words or less.

We serve delicious breakfast and lunches made from Montana ingredients.
(see a list of the Montana suppliers used by the Buttercup here)

2. What makes your business/organization sustainable, and why is it important?
The #1 ingredient of the floating island of garbage in the Pacific Ocean is takeout containers from fast food restaurants.  We strive to be an Uncontainer Store selling bulk items and encouraging customers to bring in their own cups and plates to use for take out. We compost kitchen waste and coffee grounds, We serve on ceramic dishes in the cafe, and loan enamelware dishes for catered events. We buy recycled paper products, favor purchasing items sold in reusable containers, and recycle all that we cannot reuse.The size of the carbon footprint of ingredients and products is an important consideration in all of our purchases. Our menu is designed around seasonal availability so that we can buy and serve as much local produce as possible. We strive to pierce the corporate veil on all our purchases to check on the sustainability record of our vendors.

3. What’s the best part about running a business/organization in Missoula?
The People!

4. What’s your least favorite part about running a business/organization in Missoula?
We cannot pay better wages.

5. What is one problem your business/organization faces that you need a magic solution for?
I want my zoning changed. I want B1 commercial without the current PUD overlay which prohibits us from cooking meals to order. It creates waste and rigidity and prevents us from carrying out our full mission as a sustainable business. It isn’t magic, but an expensive, time consuming process.

6. Tell us something we don’t know about your business/organization.
We are going to proceed with trying to change the zoning. 1221 Helen has served the University Neighborhood as a Market with just 2 businesses –the University Market and Freddy’s Feed and Read — for 85 of its 100 years. We want to set 1221 Helen up to be there for the next 100 years as a viable neighborhood-based Market and Restaurant.

7. How do you compete with large(r) companies to bring people through the door or build your business?
Staying local, true to our mission, and not using words like “sustainable” as a gimmick.

8. What’s your favorite Missoula pastime?
Attending festivals, lectures, plays, concerts, First Fridays, and all the other Missoula-generated entertainment. We are a creative, generous, talented bunch that know how to put on a good show!

9. If you had unlimited funds to improve your business/organization, what would you do?
Master Social Media.

10. Why are you an SBC member?
It reflects my values.