From farm to table
It is our mission to provide an array of products and produce that is affordable at any income level. Therefor we carry conventional, local, and organic options. We believe that connecting people to good food supports overall better health and environments.
When we say local, we mean it! Though our local standard is based on a 200 mile radius and within the state of Illinois, much of our produce is from the southern Illinois region. Because of our local connections, when we say our produce is fresh, it's because in peek seasons it is harvested and in the store that same day!
We have one of the largest offerings of organic produce in the region! Though some of our local farmers use organic processes, we can't label them organic due to USDA standards. Farmers must meet strict requirements that are verified by a USDA-accredited certifying agent before products can be labeled USDA organic.
Conventional produce is not subjected to the same standards like organic is. As a result, there may be contaminates such as synthetic fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides.
WHY LOCAL MATTERS
When possible, we source much of our produce locally! Many of the farmers grow year round, Better quality soil and more sustainable farming practices typically mean better tasting, more nutritious produce. Just think of us as your every day, all-year-long farmers' market.
We support our farmers by paying them a fair amount for their hard work, while making sure the price is affordable for our customers. Big or small, we will work with any farmer that meets are humane and clean practices!
It's important to the Co-op to educate customers about our food systems. We do this by supporting organizations that are dedicated to creating a sustainable food economy in Southern Illinois. Annually, we host a Farm Crawl that allows people to tour many of the farms in our region! To learn more click here
In the fall of 2006, Joas and Vera Troyer along with Leroy and Warren Yoder purchased a 525 acre farm and orchards nestled in Southern Illinois now known as Echo Valley Orchards. The Amish farm is true to its roots, producing high quality fruits and vegetables. Over the years, they have diversified the farm and greatly expanded production. The partners are proud of the land they steward and are happy to grow good nutritious wholesome food
Back-to-the-landers" Bruce and Maryanne Chrisman started their farm in 1978, specializing in alfalfa sprouts and watermelon. After taking several decades off to raise their family and pursue careers with SIU, the duo returned to farming in 2012 to become one of the region's first Certified Organic farms growing a variety of crops on three of their 18 acres. Their intext is to exemplify new agriculture that produces crops that nourish and sustain vibrant health.
Flyway Family Farm is a small family farm specializing in organically grown gourmet mushrooms. Nestled in the heart of the Shawnee Hills, surrounded by Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge. The health and happiness of their plants, fungi, animals, and soils are our top priorities. They strive to provide nutrient dense, organically grown mushrooms year round.