Joe Kaplan - Perennial Pantry
To create a diverse regional grainshed built upon regenerative agriculture practices that steward the health of communities, local economies, and natural resources.
A thriving and equitable Midwest staple crops economy that stewards our landscapes and ecosystems, strengthens connections between rural and urban communities, and ensures regional food security.
Luke Peterson - A-Frame Farm
Our network seeks to advance an anti-racist regional agriculture where all people have opportunities to engage in a food system that cares deeply for the land and everyone who relies on it. Building a just and equitable grainshed is a process of growth and development; we acknowledge that people move at different rates along different pathways in this work. We will continue to hold one another accountable for naming and unlearning racist ideas and habits, collectively healing from their harms, and radically reimagining a new regional food system.
We foster education exchange within the food system and across the grain value chain through peer learning, public education, original research, and communications strategies. Knowledge is power and we want to cultivate and spread it.
We believe in the power of trust-based relationships and seek to create a home for the collective intelligence of all participants in our regional food system. We look to natural systems to guide the ways we work together to create agricultural models that care deeply for both people and the earth.
Diverse regenerative agriculture systems improve the health of the soil, water quality, human nutrition, and the viability of both urban and rural communities.
Good food, and especially staple crops, must be available and accessible to all people in all communities.
John Lee - Hewn
In 2016, Chicago bakers interested in using local flour connected with a group of environmentalists concerned about the environmental impacts of farming. Together, they realized that local production of small grains could improve Midwestern landscapes and expand the flavor and variety of fresh whole grains available to the region. Since their first meetings, the group—what we now know as AGC—has grown in breadth and geography to create a network of stakeholders jointly bolstering our regional grain economy.
Laine’s Bake Shop
The Steering Committee keeps our work in alignment with our mission and vision.
Sam Koentopp, Big Green (chair)
Ben Penner, Ben Penner Farms
Erin Meyer, Basil’s Harvest
Gil Williams, Lonesome Stone Milling
Rachel Bernier-Green, ‘Laine’s Bake Shop
Sandra Holl, Floriole Bakery & Cafe
Wesley Rieth, Granor Farm
ilana natasha photography - State Line Distillery
The Coordinating Committee puts our mission and vision into action through five member-led Working Groups.
Education & Outreach Working Group
Amy Halloran, Author & Flour Ambassador
Research & Variety Testing Working Group
Brian Jacobson, University of Illinois Food Science Pilot Processing Plant
Farmer Collaboration Working Group
Halee Wepking, Meadowlark Organics & Meadowlark Community Mill
Brewing & Distilling Working Group
Elena Byrne, Renewing the Countryside
Institutional Procurement Working Group
Brianna Fiene, University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems
Favorite sandwich: BLT with extra bacon, extra lettuce, extra tomato, and a light smear of mayo sandwiched between two seedy pan loaf slices.Email
Favorite sandwich: open-faced basil pesto with tomato on a slice of local, whole-grain artisan bread.Email
Favorite sandwich: open-faced almond butter and ginger peach jam on a slice of Adrian Hale’s fresh communal bread.Email
Favorite sandwich: smoked turkey with swiss, arugula, mayo, and yellow mustard with some chips on top for extra crunch.Email
Favorite sandwich: open-faced fried egg with pickled fennel, cabbage, and carrots on a thick slice of dark rye breadEmail
Favorite sandwich: Italian beef with the bread quickly, but fully, submerged in au jus just before adding the beefEmail
Favorite sandwich: fried egg on homemade bread — not just for breakfast!Email