PO Box 6171
Madison, WI 53716
Home Grown Wisconsin is a cooperative of 25 family farms, started in 1996. The farms range in size from a few to over 100 acres and work together to distribute organic food products to restaurants in Chicago, Milwaukee, and Madison. Between all twenty-five farms, workers range in age from the young children of farmers to retired community members and also include several Amish growers. All together the co-op grows over 400 varieties of fruit and vegetables, including antique and heirloom varieties. Some members produce organic beef, chicken and lamb, as well as eggs and flowers. Although many farmers within the cooperative have been certified organic for years, in 2005 it was decided that all coop members must be certified.
Why is growing organic a priority for your group?
All of our growers are committed to growing sustainable organic produce. Their reasons for growing this way may vary, but in the end we can all rally around the importance of a healthier family and society.
Why should people buy organic products instead of other options?
It is important for us to actively participate in the movement to educate people on the benefits of local, seasonal and organic produce. Even familiar varieties, available everywhere, taste dramatically better and remarkably different when grown and harvested with the care that our farmers know is essential to a superior product. Organic and sustainable agricultural practices result in the most delicious and healthy produce one can eat, while actually fortifying the soil in which it is grown rather than depleting and polluting it. Buying local organic also helps develop and sustain our local economy.
What makes your farms special?
Our cooperative is a special experiment, and our farmer/chef relationships have blossomed into something very unique and inspiring!
Where do you want your business to be in the next year? 5 years? 10 years?
We would eventually like to begin processing food in order to supply schools, hospitals, and other larger institutions.
Where can consumers get your products?
In 2004, we launched our first CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) in Chicago with great success. Subscribers get weekly or bi-weekly boxes of assorted fresh vegetables and produce from mid-June through mid-October. On the website you will also find a list of restaurants who buy our products-which is another exciting and enjoyable way to taste our produce prepared by the finest chefs! One can also find Home Grown Wisconsin produce at our farm stand at the Green City Market each week in Chicago.
Visit the Home Grown Wisconsin website or call General Manager Suzanne Rubenstein at (608) 341-8939 for more information about this cooperative.