We love our local farmers and producers!
Nearly a quarter of all of Just Food Co-op’s purchasing dollars go to buy foods that are locally-produced. We’d like to introduce you to a few of the folks that grow your food.
Gardens of Eagan
Gardens of Eagan is a 100-acre, urban-edge, vegetable farm, providing certified organic produce to the Twin Cities and surrounding communities. Its proximity to a metropolitan area allows the farm to serve as an educational resource to consumers and farmers through its 501 (c) 3 non-profit, The Organic Field School.
Gardens of Eagan is a demonstration of the logic, elegance and viability of ecologically based, organic food production. Originally in Eagan, Gardens of Eagan was established by Martin Diffley in 1973 and co-operated with Atina Diffley. It is now owned by the Wedge Community Co-op and run by farm manager Linda Halley.
Harry and Jackie Hoch
La Crescent, Minnesota
Hoch Orchard and Gardens produces 50 varieties of organically grown apples, including Honeycrisp, Zestar, Sweet 16, Fuji, Keepsake, Ginger gold and Sansa on its 25-acre farm near the Mississippi River bluffs, and some new varieties that are just coming into production.
In addition to apples, the Hochs produce wine grapes, red raspberries, strawberries and other berries, like black, purple and yellow raspberries, blueberries and blackberries. They also grow other tree fruit, including plums, apricots, cherries and some peaches.
L&R Poultry and Produce
L&R Poultry & Produce is a family owned and operated, 72 acre woodland farm, located an hour SE of Minneapolis/St.Paul in Goodhue County, MN. Rolling hills, streams, and mixed hardwood trees surround us. Wild turkeys, deer, badgers, coyotes, owls, and snapping turtles, all make their home on our farm and often “snack” on our vegetables!
All of the poultry on our farm are free range and spend much of the day scavenging for worms, bugs, seeds, and greens. Their natural diet is supplemented with a corn and soybean based feed that contains no animal or poultry by-products, no antibiotics, and no hormones or artificial growth stimulants. The mill in Goodhue, MN has our feed recipe and grinds our feed fresh for us. The turkeys that we raise are old time varieties such as the Standard and Broad-Breasted Bronze.
Our vegetables are grown organically without the use of chemical pesticides or fertilizers. We manage our soil very carefully and use crop rotation, and composted poultry manure to naturally increase soil fertility. We also use grassed strips and cover crops to minimize soil erosion. All of our vegetables are grown dry land, meaning that we grow only the types of vegetables suited to our soil type and climate, without depleting valuable groundwater resources or electricity.
Living Water Gardens
Steve & Miriam Klingbeil and family
The Klingbeils have grown nearly 7,000 hydroponic tomato plants for the past 17 years, from seed to maturity, from within the protection provided by the acre of greenhouses on their property—without contaminants and pesticides.
Today, the farm produces several types of tomatoes, including grape, vine-on and beef steak. According to the family, Living Water is the perfect name. It means “full of life, full of water, full of healthy nutrients.”
Cedar Grove Cheese
Cedar Grove cheesemakers craft 4 million pounds of cheese a year from milk bought from more than 30 Wisconsin farmers, who have pledged not to treat their cows with artificial growth hormones, animal enzymes or genetically modified ingredients.
Working in concert with nature is an important part of Cedar Grove’s business, which relies on a “Living Machine” to clean wash-water in a beautiful biological way, and actively promotes recycling and energy reduction programs.
Cedar Summit Farm
Dave and Florence Minar
New Prague, Minnesota
For three generations, Cedar Summit has produced non-homogenized milk, cream, yogurt, ice cream, butter, hard cheeses and sour cream. Owners Dave and Florence Minar stopped using petrochemical herbicides and fertilizers in the 1970s, substituting good tillage and crop rotation practices to manage the land. They have adopted a grazing system where all animals are pastured on the land for at least seven months and fed stored grasses the remainder of the year. No antibiotics or added hormones are used.
The historic sandstone caves of Faribault Dairy are home to three premium blue-veined cheeses: Amablu® Blue, Gorgonzola and St. Pete’s Select. All three are made from raw cow’s milk in traditional open vats, hand salted, and cave-aged in hand-dug sandstone caves. The cheeses vary in aging (from 75 to 100+ days), physical attributes, and flavor. Faribault Dairy’s cheese makers vary the types of starter cultures, processing conditions, and ageing temperatures to attain the desired profile.Each natural artisanal cheese wheel is produced by hand from whole milk, not machine made, under standardized conditions.
Shepherd’s Way Farms
Steven Read and Jodi Ohlsen Read
Owners Steven and Jodi Ohlsen Read (and their four sons) make cheese by hand with milk from their own sheep near Northfield, Minnesota. They make several different cheeses, including Friesago, Shepherd’s Hope and Big Woods Blue, as well as others available on a limited basis, like Hidden Falls, Harmand and traditional Ricotta.
Hidden Stream Farm
Eric and Lisa Klein
Hidden Stream Farm produces grass-fed beef, pork and chickens with no chemicals or antibiotics on a family farm located near the bluffs of the Mississippi River. The animals are raised using a grass-based system, allowing the Klein family to farm in a more environmentally friendly and sustainable way, while producing products free of any unwanted antibiotics and/or hormones.
Thousand Hills Cattle Company
Todd Churchill, CEO
Cannon Falls, MN
Thousand Hills grass-fed cattle are raised on small Midwest farms and processed at a state-of-the-art USDA-inspected facility in Cannon Falls, Minnesota. Pasture-raised cattle live low-stress lives, making them healthier and a source of more delicious, health-promoting food. Buying products made from pastured animals means you are eating food raised as nature intended while you support small family farms, safeguard the environment, and promote animal welfare.