Links to physical and online grain resources for the pandemic
An ongoing list of where to locate flour, bread, produce, and other products all grown, raised, or made in the Upper Midwest during COVID-19 and beyond. We’ll continue to update in the coming weeks. If you have other information that should be included please write us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And don’t forget about AGC’s new initiative to sustain farmers, millers, bakers, and eaters: Neighbor Loaves.
As COVID-19 has spread rapidly throughout the country, supermarket shelves that were once filled with an endless array of pasta, bread, and canned goods are often empty. Even as national supply chains are crinkling under demand and pressure, small mills across the country are cranking up production and delivery capabilities to meet the nation’s need for flour. Restaurants, bakeries, bars, breweries, and distilleries are working tirelessly to operate safely and efficiently in our new normal. Some businesses have closed for the time being, while others are piloting new and different takeout or delivery models. At the center of this crisis are small-scale farms who are integral to our food supply. And even as we face an uncertain financial future, we can take heart in knowing that our farmers and makers are nimble, continuing to find ways to feed us.
If there’s a silver lining to all of this, it’s the community action already taking place to support the independent businesses that anchor our communities. Individuals can continue to purchase food, beverages, or merchandise, donate to virtual tip jars to assist laid off employees, and buy gift certificates to redeem later. The James Beard Foundation has compiled a very helpful summary of actions and resources, with much contribution from Midwestern chefs. Each of us must also take a few minutes to call our local, state, and federal government officials to request financial assistance and other resources for small businesses and their employees. Not only must we take immediate steps to protect the livelihoods of farmers and others in the food industry, we must also demand that our elected officials take action to bolster local supply chains to ensure robust systems between our regional food producers, distributors, and eaters. And before we dive in, here’s a guide to food safety during COVID-19 from Serious Eats.
Upper Midwest mills and grain farms with online sales and nationwide shipping:
Baker’s Field Flour and Bread – Minneapolis, MN
Brian Severson Farms – Dwight, IL
Doubting Thomas Farms – Moorhead, MN
Funks Grove Heritage Fruit & Grains – Funks Grove, IL
Hazzard Free Farm – Pecatonica, IL
Janie’s Mill – Ashkum, IL
Lonesome Stone Milling – Lone Rock, WI
Meuer Farm – Chilton, WI
NETZRO – Minneapolis, MN
Sunrise Flour Mill – North Branch, MN
Pre-order Kernza® flour or grain from Perennial Pantry.
Upper Midwest bakeries that source grain from local farms and are offering shipping, delivery, or curbside pickup:
Baker Miller – Chicago, IL
Brake Bread – St. Paul, MN
Doughp Creations – Granite Falls, MN
Hewn – Evanston, IL
Madison Sourdough – Madison, WI
Middle Brow Bungalow – Chicago, IL
Muddy Fork Farm and Bakery – Bloomington, IN
ORIGIN Breads – Madison, WI
Perennial Bakers – Oak Park, IL
pHlour Bakery & Cafe – Chicago, IL
Sun Street Breads – Minneapolis, MN
Three Twigs Bakery – Springfield, IL
Brewery and Distillery Resources:
Illinois Craft Brewers Guild put together this list of IL breweries where you can purchase product online for curbside pickup, home delivery, or both. Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild put together this list of breweries offering to-go purchases. Craftbeer.com has compiled a Nationwide List of Go-To Beer Options by Brewery.
The North American Craft Maltsters Guild has also created a Coronavirus Resource Center for craft maltsters and others in the craft malt supply chain. Home brewers can purchase organic malt from MN-based MaltWerks via Northern Brewer.
Map of distilleries producing hand sanitizer produced by the American Distilling Institute and Southern Methodist University’s Data Science program.
Other Opportunities to Support Local Farms and Businesses:
Chicago Farmers Market Collective has compiled an online resource to support local vendors through pick up locations, home delivery, and CSA options. Brian Severson Farms, Three Sisters Garden, pHlour Bakery, and Bungalow by Middle Brow are all offering grain-based products for sale through this platform.
In addition to the CSA shares that can be picked up at the Logan Square Farmers Market, Henry’s Farm offers a CSA pick-up at the Evanston Farmers Market, and will deliver the CSA shares even if the market doesn’t open as usual in May.
Contact Spence Farm (email email@example.com) to be added to an email list with pickup in Fairbury and delivery to spots in Chicago. Irv & Shelly’s Fresh Picks is another great option for home delivery in the Chicago area as is Local Foods. In Logan Square, Dill Pickle Co-op is open. And here’s a list of CSA subscriptions from the Logan Square Farmers Market that will begin in the next couple weeks. PrariErth Farm will have CSA boxes available for the Bloomington, Lincoln, Atlanta, and Springfield communities starting in May. And if you need some encouragement about the resiliency of local food systems, check out this great video that Katie Bishop from PrariErth posted a few days ago.
Head to this list to purchase directly from farmers and producers on the Minnesota Cooks website. There’s also a survey if you are a Minnesotan farmer/producer and would like to be added to the list.
The University of Minnesota Medical School Program in Health Disparities Research put together this extensive multilingual resource for the Twin Cities communities which includes information from the Minnesota Farmers’ Markets Association and a summary of the statuses of and ways to purchase from area food businesses.
On the bright side: this frightening situation has bred meaningful new partnerships and opportunities including the launch of Minnesota Central Kitchen.
Dane County Farmers Market and FairShare CSA Coalition have created a crowd-funding campaign to assist member farms and food producers whose income has been severely impacted due to the virus. Get more information and donate here. And get yourself signed up for a CSA!
Fondy Farmers Market has worked with vendors to establish a limited pre-order and pick-up system.
The Isthmus newspaper published a list on Thursday, March 19 of Madison-area restaurants offering home delivery and carry out. And REAP Food Group has created a Restaurant Guide for their Farm Fresh Atlas membersG