Local Food is Essential

Origin Story

Join the Movement

The Local Food is Essential movement was founded by local non-profits, businesses, and farming organizations in response to the unexpected challenges facing producers and makers in the MN/WI food system as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We believe that local food is essential. It is essential to our local economy, to the health of our communities, and to the environment.

This worldwide health event has shown just how important and precarious food access can be, and how essential it is to have a strong, vibrant local food system. Unfortunately, local farmers and food producers who rely on sales to restaurants, schools, corporate campuses, farmers markets, and colleges face diminished access to these markets and may face financial consequences as a result. You can help by joining the Local Food is Essential movement and purchasing locally gown and made food products.

We believe that local food is essential.

It is essential to our local economy, to the health of our communities
and to the environment.

“It’s important to help local farmers because they count on that income. Not all of us are tech-savvy to be able to adopt new online sales platforms, so shopping from small farmers at markets and through CSA’s is really important. Small farmers protect land from development and are good for the environment with sustainable farming practices.”

Mhonpaj Lee, Mhonpaj’s Garden
Giving Opportunity to local farmers so they can provide food security to your community

All of us have seen disruptions in the food supply chain due to COVID-19.  Maybe this looks like eggs and meat not being available at the supermarket, your local farmers market shutting down or your favorite restaurant closing.  While the complex national food supply chain has faltered, your local farmers have been working overtime to ensure a diverse food selection remains available.  At the same time farmers are providing this essential service they are facing enormous economic instability as their traditional markets shift, and sometimes close altogether.  Buying locally produced food keeps local farms strong so they can make sure you always have access to the food you need.

Click here to find local food in MN and WI

“We’re trying to serve the land and serve people by giving them the best nourishment to help their bodies and their whole selves. Support from the community is really, really important to us in practical ways but also in an emotional way. Farming is hard, but it makes a big difference to feel like our community believes in what we are doing and thinks it’s worthwhile.”

Elizabeth O’Sullivan, Auntie Annie’s Farm
Reducing your environmental impact

Local food has to travel fewer miles from the farm to your kitchen. This means you can reduce your environmental impact while getting the freshest food possible, through simply changing how you purchase food.

Click here to take the eat local pledge

“Local food is good – good to support your community and your local farmers”

Moses Momanyi, Dawn2Dusk Farms
Investing in your local economy

Spending your money with local farmers means that money stays within your local economy – supporting other local businesses and jobs. This allows you to amplify the effects of your money, creating a more robust and resilient local economy.

Click here to learn about food equity

Click here to purchase Local Food is Essential merchandise

“It’s important to help local farmers because they count on that income. Not all of us are tech-savvy to be able to adopt new online sales platforms, so shopping from small farmers at markets and through CSA’s is really important. Small farmers protect land from development and are good for the environment with sustainable farming practices.”

Mhonpaj Lee, Mhonpaj’s Garden
Giving Opportunity to local farmers so they can provide food security to your community

All of us have seen disruptions in the food supply chain due to COVID-19.  Maybe this looks like eggs and meat not being available at the supermarket, your local farmers market shutting down or your favorite restaurant closing.  While the complex national food supply chain has faltered, your local farmers have been working overtime to ensure a diverse food selection remains available.  At the same time farmers are providing this essential service they are facing enormous economic instability as their traditional markets shift, and sometimes close altogether.  Buying locally produced food keeps local farms strong so they can make sure you always have access to the food you need.

Click here to find local food in MN and WI

“We’re trying to serve the land and serve people by giving them the best nourishment to help their bodies and their whole selves. Support from the community is really, really important to us in practical ways but also in an emotional way. Farming is hard, but it makes a big difference to feel like our community believes in what we are doing and thinks it’s worthwhile.”

Elizabeth O’Sullivan, Auntie Annie’s Farm
Reducing your environmental impact

Local food has to travel fewer miles from the farm to your kitchen. This means you can reduce your environmental impact while getting the freshest food possible, through simply changing how you purchase food.

Click here to take the eat local pledge

“Local food is good – good to support your community and your local farmers”

Moses Momanyi, Dawn2Dusk Farms
Investing in your local economy

Spending your money with local farmers means that money stays within your local economy – supporting other local businesses and jobs. This allows you to amplify the effects of your money, creating a more robust and resilient local economy.

Click here to learn about food equity

Click here to purchase Local Food is Essential merchandise

Support Local

Strategy Day for Farmers

With the growing season coming to a close, many farmers and makers struggle sustaining their businesses during the long, Midwest winters. Yet winter can also be an ideal and productive time for planning ahead, and we’d like to help. 

In an effort to support the local foods community throughout the seasons, LFIE is excited to announce a new, free program: Strategy Day for Farmers. 

This new endeavor (inspired by the Hands on Twin Cities’ Impact Day) will pair local professionals willing to volunteer their time and expertise with a local food farmer or maker who has a specific challenge that can be tackled in a day.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at info@localfoodisessential.org. We are very excited about this opportunity and cannot wait to support our local food community during this winter season!

*At this time, applications are open to MN and WI farmers only.

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Please join us in the Local Food is Essential movement by taking the Eat Local Pledge.