Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

An 8-Million-Dollar Milestone

Did you know that Whole Foods Market® has funded $8 million in low-interest loans for small, local producers through our Local Producer Loan Program? Since 2007, this money has helped 130 farmers, ranchers and food artisans grow their businesses and bring hundreds of unique, high-quality products into our stores for our customers to enjoy.

To celebrate this milestone, we're giving away a basket full of goodies made by some of our Local Producer Loan recipients!  Just enter a comment below by February 20 telling us which local producers or products you love and why and you’ll have a chance to win! UPDATE: Thanks to everyone that entered. Congratulations to our randomly chosen winner, Rachael W.!

Thank you to these vendors, for so generously donating their products:

Edie Johnston and her son, Geo of Dresden, Maine – Maine’s Medicinals’ AnthoImmune Organic Elderberry Syrup is a supplement for overall immune system support.

Michele Thornett of Timonium, Maryland - Michele’s Granola is handmade in small batches. Read more about Michele and her granola in this Whole Story blog post from 2011.

Daniel Sullivan of Long Island City, New York – TumericALIVE elixirs feature raw, organic turmeric root and supports healthy joints and metabolism.

David Rukin of West Palm Beach, Florida – Beekeeper David’s been raising bees since 1975 and his Buzzn Bee Farm was our first ever LPLP recipient. Check out this video of David and learn how he got his honey in to Whole Foods Market.

Danielle LiVolsi of San Diego, California – Nuttzo’s organic multi-nut and seed butters are a high source of ALA Omega-3s. Try the original, chocolate or no peanuts varieties.

The women of Magdalene in Nashville, Tennessee – Thistle Farms hand-made, natural bath products are produced and sold by women who have survived lives of prostitution and addiction. Learn more about Magdalene in this Whole Story profile from 2011.

Farmer Gene Mealhow of Shellsburg, Iowa – Tiny But Mighty popcorn – a rare, heirloom popcorn variety native to prehistoric America. Their Non-GMO Project Verified popcorn kernels are smaller and denser so they’re packed with flavor. Plus the hull disintegrates when popped making them really enjoyable to eat. Learn more about Tiny But Mighty in this Whole Story blog post.

Adam Grossman of Austin, Texas – The Seaweed Bath Company’s soothing powder baths contain responsibly harvested bladderwrack seaweed and soothes dry and irritated skin.

Julie Nirvelli of Boulder, Colorado – White Girl Salsa has been cooking up zesty salsas for her friends and family for years.

Tami and Clark Bowen of Hansville, Washington  - CB’s Nuts utilizes a custom-made barrel roaster to  micro-roast high-quality peanuts and pistachios. They also make fresh ground peanut butter!

Eileen Hassi of San Francisco, California – Ritual Coffee Roasters has been a pioneer of the San Francisco coffee scene since 2005. Focused on sourcing directly from their farmer partners, Ritual’s coffee beans are of the highest quality and can be traced directly back to the farmers who harvested them.

Local Producer Gift Box

In the comments below, tell us about a local producer or local product you love. Post your comment by February 20 and we’ll pick a winner at random to receive a unique bunch of local products.

The fine print: No purchase necessary. Promotion ends February 20, 2013, 11:59 PM CDT. Must be a legal resident of the US or Canada (except in Quebec, where it is void) age 18 or older to participate. Taxes on prize, if applicable, are the responsibility of the winner. Employees of Whole Foods Market, Inc., are not eligible. Void where prohibited.

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1745 comments

Comments

Nancy says …

I hadn't eaten popcorn in many years until I found Tiny and Mighty popcorn at Whole Foods. This popcorn with organic butter has got to be the best. I also see that you can buy a bag of their already popped popcorn.

Margaret Wiley says …

The local honey is my fave!

Eileen Hamilton says …

Pineland Farms produce the finest natural beef in the country

Eileen Hamilton says …

Mom’s Organic Munchies are the best! MOM’s meal replacement bars -- gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free and casein free baked goods.

Lindsay says …

Micro-batch peanut butter? Sign me up!

Amy says …

It's a real pleasure to have both some of the world's best chocolate and some of the world's best wine in our backyard!

Tawny says …

I love Gaia herbs products. i regularly take their feverfew. Recently when I got the flu, I took their black elderberry syrup instead of going to the Dr. & getting a prescription. I love natural products and I love supporting local. I would love to try all of these products above. I could have some new favorites.

Evelyn says …

My family loves Brooklyn Kombucha. It comes in different flavors. Delicious!!!

Tiffany says …

Tasty local cheese 'Utah's own Barely Buzzed', terrific stuff!

Carol White says …

Baetje Farms LLC is a seasonal farmstead artisan goat cheese dairy that has some of the best, prize winning cheeses in the metro St. Louis area.

Jaclyn F says …

I love all types of local honey! I've inadventantly started collecting them. They're all so different! :)

Cory Popovich says …

Raw balls are probably my favorite...I love Zaza areas well and really anything local made with whole foods

Tia says …

Newman's Own is one of my favorites and love that all proceeds go to charity.

Ty Shlackman says …

I love fresh produce from Alderman Farms and Lady Moon Farms.

Caitlin Leyden says …

I love getting honey at the local farmer's market. It's supposed to be better for allergies, and I also like that there are kinds from different plants.

Juanita says …

I love all of the local honey it's hard to pick just one

Barb says …

I'm a beer drinker and when I first moved to Florida I loved that I could get a taste of the Sunshine State with Orange Blossom Pilsner. It's brewed right here in Central FL and it's a perfect beverage to enjoy in the warm FL weather.

Joanie says …

I'm a huge fan of our local dairy, Homeland Creamery! They produce milk, ice cream and butter and I'm fortunate to find it at my WFM in Greensboro, NC. Their milk comes in glass bottles and tastes AMAZING! I grew up on a dairy farm and it reminds me of the milk my grandfather would pull from the cooling tank for me to drink as a little girl. I think it's really cool that they use glass bottles so I can recycle the containers when I'm done. My only wish is that the WFM would carry more of their ice cream flavors. Chocolate is great but their website says they have so many more flavors that I'd love to try.

Kari says …

I love Nude Food! They make excellent bars and powders for shakes. Totally vegan and GF, made from WF and amazing. When we visited Texas we found another company we enjoyed Hail Merry raw truffles. Keep supporting these local innovators! So fun to try them out.

Joanna says …

The Seaweed Bath Company is great!!

Alesha says …

I love Eden brand. I have been a Detroit girl all my life and it is great to have a local company making products I trust to taste good and be good for me!

Shelly says …

I love the local winter squashes (spaghetti and butternut) grown here in Nevada. They cook more quickly and they're easier to cut open - the skins aren't as hard, I'm guessing because they're fresher!

Lauren says …

My husband and I both love buying the local Washington produce from the Redmond, WA Whole Foods Market. It's always fun to see where our food comes from! Another product we love locally is our COFFEE! Duh, WASHINGTON :)

Kelly says …

Admittedly, I buy the majority of my food at the Urban Harvest Farmer's Market on Saturday mornings. When I am in Salt Lake City visiting my daughter, I purchase bottles of Slide Ridge Honey Vinegar (wish you would carry their lotion products). Here in Houston, it's Kickin' Kombucha! :)

Evalena says …

My family and I LOVE Applegate meats!!! I feel safe knowing their animals are happy, healthy and hormone free :) From Farm to our table, we give thanks!

Wakana says …

I subscribe to a CSA called "Farm Fresh To You," which includes organic produce from the Capay Valley. As a city/suburb girl, I love getting their updates about the various happenings at their farm, and learning about the challenges and excitements to organic farming. My husband surprised me on my birthday last year, and drove me out to their farm to visit. Very cool!

Catrina says …

When I lived in Washington I loved going to a place called Green Bluff with my husband and daughters, it was a community of local establishments and you could get almost anything there. They had farms, each had their own speciality (veggies, fruit, flowers) they had a wine maker, bread bakers, alpaca raisers and a few cafes. I never wanted to leave.

a beemon says …

here locally in the tri-state (cincinnati) area i'm drawn, on saturday mornings, to findlay market for a loaf (or more) of blue oven bakery bread. good folks doing good things to nourish our community, among the many other worthy vendors there. thanks to all.

Charlene Duncan says …

We get our eggs from a local friend and they are delicious!

Miranda says …

I love the local produce from my CSA

Gary says …

Black Market Bakery in Orange County makes great pastries

allison says …

Nicole's gluten free crackers

Liz A says …

I love all the local foods I can get at Whole Foods. A particular favorite are Carol's Cookies, from only about 10 miles away!

JEN D. says …

I need this basket! Really! I know 'need' is a strong word, but I could really benefit from so many of the products! I am trying to include honey in my diet, to help my digestion and I would love Buxxn Bee Farm honey! Also, I really want to Maine’s Medicinals’ AnthoImmune Organic Elderberry Syrup... not to mention products by Seaweed Bath Co. & the delicious granola by Michele! I love Whole Foods for bringing me these great products in their stores! :)

Lee Bell says …

I go to the farmer's market & pick my produce.

Misty S says …

I love all the Washington apples - sweet, crisp, juicy, and affordable!

Kory says …

Some that we <3 -> Theo's Chocolate, Firefly Kitchens, Essential Baking Co, Flying Apron

Midori says …

Snow's Citrus Court--a reason to brave California-cold weather to their orchard...or at least to the local farmers' market. http://www.snowscitrus.com/homepagewelcome.html

Sue Swyt says …

Jeni's ice cream in Ohio, made from Snowville Creamery dairy and local honey, maple syrup, and other ingredients.

Stephanie says …

Sleepy Monks Coffee! They have a taste that can't be duplicated. I tried a major brand the other day, and it was sooo bitter, but never had that problem with Sleepy Monks Coffee!

Jill says …

One of my top favorites is Potter's Crackers. They are delicious. She is always coming up with new flavor combinations. Simply and beautifully packaged. The Vermont Valley CSA is outstanding as well. Never disappointed the the freshness or variety of selection in my share delivery.

Robyn says …

Rawk me ice cream is something that everyone can enjoy.

Brynne says …

Uncle Eddie's Vegan chocolate chip cookies!!! Made just a few miles from my L.A. home in Glendale, CA. Indescribably scrumptious.

Fay O says …

On my trip to Australia, I found out how beef, fish, fruits, veggies, etc. should taste. They are free range, no chemicals operations. So that's what I look for here . . . at the local supermarkets and Farmers Market. If I can't get organics at the Farmer's Market (sold out by the time I get there), I buy Australian beef/lamb and organic berries, tomatoes, lettuce, everything organic, or at least non-GMO at the nearby grocery store. At Farmers Market I buy small peppers, squash and eggplant for stuffing. Eggs (I'm usually too late to get them), chicken, lamb, beef from Hasselmann's Family Farm in Marengo, IL. Animals are treated humanely. Cattle are free range, grass fed (except in winter, of course). Then they are fed organic hay. Other animals are also fed non-GMO grains. They grow their own organic hay and grains. They practice sustainable farming methods. This sounds like a commercial for the farm, but because of their approach to farming, I TRUST the food I buy from them to be wholesome. My favorites are Hasselmann's eggs, and fruits and veggies from the other local farms and individuals. Farms provide more quantity, individuals less quantity but great quality.

Kelly says …

I've never been able to try Nuttzo, but am sure I would love it!

Debbie Mahder says …

I love Vitafusion Multivites - these got my husband to finally start taking vitamins on a regular basis. They are tasty!

maryann says …

I love our local organic CSA , Muth family farm.

Margie Baker says …

Thistle Farms is such an amazing company!

Patricia Moneta says …

I always shop at our local produce stand when I need something. They have the best and freshest produce in our area.

Monica says …

I love Ronnybrook Farm's ice cream because it is fresh, flavorful, and unique.

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