Local Food Producers, Buyers, and Distributors:
- University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms
- Local Foods programs
- Stephenson Local Foods Initiative
- Winnebago Local Foods Initiative
- Raise, Grow, Harvest, Eat, Repeat: a blog for growers, consumers, and backyard gardeners to grow, eat, and connect in the local food system
- Farm to School
- Community Gardens
- Nutrition and Wellness
- Local Foods Directory of Northern Illinois
- Northwest Illinois Local Foods Directory (2015)
- Southern Wisconsin Fresh Farm Atlas
- Marketmaker is a national network that connect farmers and fishermen with food retailers, grocery stores, processors, caterers, chefs, and consumers
- Local Dirt is an online portal connecting local food buyers and sellers of all scales
- LocalHarvest is an online directory of family farms and farmers markets that “connects people looking for good food with the farmers who produce it”
Regional and State Resources:
- Building Successful Food Hubs: A Business Planning Guide for Aggregating and Processing Local Foods in Illinois (January 2012)
- Illinois Specialty Growers Association promotes and develops the Illinois specialty crop industry
- Illinois Stewardship Alliance promotes environmentally sustainable, economically viable, socially just, local food systems through policy development, advocacy, and education
- Illinois Farmers Market Association provides education and support to farmers market organizers, farmers, vendors and other community food and nutrition organizations
- Wisconsin Local Food Network engages, connects, and empowers local, regional, and state organizations and individuals to build sustainable, equitable, and resilient food systems
- USDA Know your Food Know Your Farmer is a USDA-wide effort to carry out President Obama’s commitment to strengthening local and regional food system
- The Wallace Center supports entrepreneurs and communities as they build a new, 21st century food system that is healthier for people, the environment, and the economy
- The Network for Incubator and Commissary Kitchens (NICK) is a free, private group of kitchen professionals who exchange best practices, share frustrations, offer encouragement, and solve problems together. Also on Facebook.
Other Food Business Incubator Models:
Members of the planning team have studied these and other shared-used kitchen incubators to develop a model that will be best suited for Freeport and the surrounding region.
- Food Business Innovation Network is a collaboration of organizations working to provide access to facilities and technical assistance for aspiring food processors and other food & farm entrepreneurs, coordinated by the University of Wisconsin Extension.
- Bushel & Pecks Local Market in Beloit, WI, is a specialty food market, a restaurant, a beer & wine shop, a food processing kitchen and a special gathering place for locals & visitors. “Our vision embraces Local Food, Community & Culture. We grow, source, preserve, and serve local, organic foods through our CSA, markets, restaurant, kitchen, and store. We cultivate sustainable community food systems from farm to table.” Also see this video.
- FEED Kitchens (Food Enterprise & Economic Development) in Madison, WI, includes five commercial kitchens available for rent by the hour. FEED also offers a training kitchen for non-profit groups and cooking teachers. Also see this video.
- Wisconsin Innovation Kitchen in Mineral Point, WI, is a commercial kitchen owned and operated by a center supporting people with disabilities. Their on-site staff prepare and package recipes and food products for commercial sale (i.e. a co-packing model). Also see this video.
- Kitchen Incubator of Northwest Illinois in Sterling, IL, is a commercial kitchen business incubator, available for rent by the hour, sponsored by the Greater Sterling Development Corporation, the Sauk Valley Area Chamber of Commerce and the City of Sterling.
- Farm Market Kitchen in Algoma, WI, is a commercial kitchen business incubator available for rent by the hour led by a not-for-profit, The Living Lake’s Heritage, Inc., whose mission is “to develop and to encourage educational and economic opportunities which foster understanding and experiences in the unique cultural heritage of the area and promote balance and sustainability of the environmental treasures of the region.” Also see this video.
- Brown County Culinary Kitchen in Green Bay, WI, is a commercial kitchen incubator managed through a non-profit collaborative effort among four partnering organizations: Advance, a division of the Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, N.E.W. Curative Rehabilitation, Northeast Wisconsin Technical College and The Farm Market Kitchen. Also see this video.
- Food Enterprise Center and Fifth Season Cooperative in Viroqua, WI
- Food Enterprise Center is a multi-tenant aggregation, storage, processing and distribution center with ten food and wellness-related businesses which employ at least 45 people. See also: Food Enterprise Center receives Top Rural Initiative Award.
- Fifth Season Cooperative, located in the Food Enterprise Center, is a full-service, local food broker serving Chicago, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Madison and everywhere in between.
- Appalachian Center for Economic Networks (ACENet) in Athens, Ohio includes a shared-use Food Manufacturing and Commercial Kitchen facility that hosts over 150 businesses annually.
- The Plant in Chicago, IL, is a multi-purpose social entrepreneurship project in a former meatpacking facility including a kitchen incubator and other food business incubation space.