Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Help Us Celebrate $4 Million and Counting!

THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR COMMENTS. CONGRATULATIONS TO TARA FROM ANN ANBOR, MICHIGAN! SHE'S THE WINNER OF THE LOCAL PRODUCT GIFT BASKET! Good news – as of this week, Whole Foods Market has funded $4 million in low-interest loans for small, local producers through our Local Producer Loan Program! Even better news – that money has helped our neighborhood farmers, bakers, artisans, mom-and-pop shops (you name it) grow their businesses and bring hundreds of high quality products into our stores for our customers to enjoy. The best news – to celebrate the milestone, we're giving away a basket full of goodies made by some of our loan recipients!  It's simple. Just enter a comment below by March 22nd telling us why you love your local producers and you have a chance to win! We’ll choose one lucky comment at random to receive the basket. Why did we start the Local Producer Loan Program? Whole Foods Market recognizes that small businesses (even with high quality products and a viable business plan) sometimes need a hand to reach their big dreams. So in 2007, we launched the Local Producer Loan Program with a commitment to fund up to $10 million dollars in low-interest loans. After all, it's our hard-working local producers and their unique offerings that give each of our stores its one-of-a-kind flavor and pizzazz. Check out what's in this bountiful basket. And remember, since these products are made by local stars from all across the country, you may not be able to find them at your local store. All the more reason to post your comment by March 22nd for a chance to give these great local favorites a try.

Why do you love your local producers?

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6387 comments

Comments

Alex J says …

In these times it's so important to support and explore buying local. Less fuel and waste promote a healthier lifestyle for ourselves and our communities.

Fred T. Meyer says …

My first experience with local produce (as I was growing up in Chicago) was to pluck mint leaves from my parents back yard, to use in tea and in a certain Middle Eastern dish (that I learned to cook while working in the kitchen of a local restaurant). I did this as a teenager. I loved seeing/feeling/smelling the direct connection between the mint plant in the garden and the mint flavor in my food and drink. --- My next experience with local produce was making road trips to Southern Wisconsin to pick apples in several small orchards. I did this a number of times over a period of 15 years, beginning while in college. I loved "entering into" the world where the apple trees grew, as I drove along local Wisconsin roads to get to those orchards. One orchard offered donuts that were being made on the spot throughout the day. The donuts were still warm as I ate them! --- My next experience with local produce began at the Evanston Farmers Market in 1984, and continued for about 20 years. I made a point of getting to know several farmers, by visiting their stands repeatedly over the years, and asking questions about their produce. I was loyal to those farmers who were happy to make detailed comments about (a) the effects of the growing conditions that season on their produce that season, (b) the strategies behind their choice of particular varieties to grow, and (c) their suggestions for how best to store and enjoy their produce. I learned a lot from those farmers about the fruits and vegetables that I particularly love, and I feel indebted to them for their hard work and dedication to growing great produce. ~ Fred

Chrissie says …

Because they rock.

Nancy says …

Locally grown produce can be harvested when it is ripe instead of being picked early to allow for transportation and distribution time. It does not need to be waxed to prevent bruising and it tastes so much better!

Sally says …

because they give back to the community immediately - in so many ways

Jackie Scherrer says …

Fresh is always best. I love knowing that I am supporting local farmers and business owners when I purchase food or other products. Keep it up Whole Foods!

Kimberly Cain says …

I love it because one of the local producers is me! I grow my own food garden so that I know exactly what I am getting.

Deb says …

I love local produce because it is fresher, so more healthy with the vitamins and minerals still available. It's great for the environment because it didn't have to travel across the country and use lots of energy, gas and resources to get it here. Plus it helps support local farmers and producers to allow them to keep providing our goods and allows them to make a good living. A WIN-WIN FOR EVERYONE!

Valencia says …

I love supporting local and small producers.

Jeanne Regan says …

I buy local when vegetables and fruits are in season. I believe in this for so many different reasons. First, it helps support local growers, which makes me feel my money spent is worthwhile and helps support growers who themselves believe in what they are offering--organic, healthy produce. What's not to love there? Secondly, I'm teaching my son on how we have the power to choose what we put into our bodies and that sometimes an item a bit higher in price can pay off for us as far as health is concerned.

Allison says …

I love local producers because you know that the products have the most nutrients since they didn't have to travel far!

jim says …

Local food supports the local economy and assures fresh and good tasting food

Tina Laterza says …

I want to cut the apron strings to gas/oil and stop using non-renewable resources. This is a big step in the right direction and so easy to do since the products are almost always better when they are purchased locally from your neighborhood businesses. Thank you Whole Foods for supporting local businesses and farmers.

Sandie says …

I like contributing to producers in my area. It's nice to have fresh food and be close to the source. It also reduces the carbon footprint.

MARY says …

Of course LOCAL means freshness, close to the grower source is Healthier, keeps profits in our state..think of our Children!

Elizabeth Hurley says …

I love Whole Foods and finding local gems.

jaja says …

we cannot trust large corporation to feed us!

Elizabeth says …

The freshness of their products. Local producers tend to "think outside the box" making sure their product is above standards. It is like they put a touch of their "heart" in everything they make.

tech turkey says …

It's alway's good to find new ideas from local producers. They care about what they "bring to market" and can put ingredients together in very unique combinations. Even the product names in the basket are "eye catching", and I'd like to try them.

Ann Schramm says …

We love our neighbors by supporting them. We save gas by buying food from local business.

Karen says …

Local means saving on transport costs. It means food can be picked when it's ripe, not when it has to be in order to last through the shipping process.

Seby Q of B says …

We enjoy supporting the community economically and environmentally. Buying local reduces transportation (less pollution) fresher food (taste great)!

loni says …

I love local products because I know they are taken care of with true care... trippyjanet at hotmail dot com

Rich says …

Knowing I'm buying local helps me to mentally connect with the lives and work of those producing the products.

MicheleS says …

We buy local because it is best for fresh, quality food and at the same time helps put money back into the community. Love WF's!

Lindsay O says …

I like local because they are normally smaller, dedicated, and seem to be more focused on perfecting their products. You can learn the stories behind them. Local tends to be more natural, and I've noticed local products that seem unique and more creative than what larger companies will produce. AND I like them because they are my "neighbors" in a sense...they are "local" and helping build up our communities.

valerie says …

Three things 1* taste 2* support local economy 3* save on carbon emissions from transport :)

Jennifer says …

Local produce taste much better! Freshness is everything.

Courtney says …

I like to keep my money within my community when I can and support the local businesses that make my community unique!

Rene Oya says …

I believe in local for many reasons. One, less carbon imprint. Two, I can support the vitality of the community by purchasing local. Three, products are grown and cared for by people who are working to sustain what is good in our world. Four, I believe we can make a difference by supporting local.

lora mcsloy says …

it gives back to the local community and encourages smaller businesses who might not have a chance otherwise!!

sherry says …

You can taste the freshness and appreciat the effort made to bring it to us as natural as possible. Who could go wrong with that? You're helping locally and thinking globally.

Therese says …

I love buying local because I know it is fresh, wholesome, and the company's can be held accountable so they genuinely strive to put forth a quality product.

Mai says …

I love and appreciate the idea of Local Producer Loan Program. I am happy to see it happens and it works. I hope all other groceries follow because they have the lead now. The program stimulates the local economy, great variety produces and help small business. I will shop at a store have this program and support it. I benefit from the great products and know that my money will go to expand the program to benefit others and me. Thank you for the great program and great products

M.L. says …

Local is better because it's more environmentally friendly, it supports families in your neck of the woods, and to top it all off, it's healthy!

kathy yeomans says …

thanks for making a difference. wow.

Wendy says …

It's time to celebrate and appreciaste those around us that are continuing to serve local food, they use local resources and our feeding our communities. Let's help our local economies and share our faith that we care about our communities.

Rachel Roland says …

I love local because I love seeing the people who make my food - the farmer who grows my produce, the rancher who takes care of the cattle, the person who takes care of the chickens who's eggs we consume. I get to speak to them and get to know them - it's so different than buying items at the regular grocery store!

Melissa says …

I love local produce because it is reassuring to know that my veggies have a minimal carbon footprint.

Tom says …

I love local producers because whenever I meet them, they're always friendly people, the kind of people I like giving my money to.

Alyssa says …

Local products are fresher and I love the fact that I'm supporting people in my own community.

Lindsey says …

Every time you spend a dollar you are voting for what you believe in. I take am fortunate to be able to shop at a store that I can trust to invest my money in a better world for everyone.

AshleyH-M says …

Local is best for the environment - it prevents pollutants from interstate transportation AND is boosts the local economy!

Stephanie says …

I love supporting my community and knowing where my food comes from!

Amber says …

I love buying locally grown/made items! I like knowing that less fuel was used to ship the items to me, that the items are generally of higher quality with less preservatives, and that I am helping to support someone that may also be my neighbor!

Lisbeth Scott says …

It makes me feel good to know that the produce I buy is grown by farmers in my own community. It gives us all a sense of belonging to a larger family....and it's easier on the earth.

Marthalynn says …

I love buying local because it makes me feel so close to my food. When I crack open an egg from a local farmer I think about the care and love it took to get that egg to my kitchen. It makes me much more present when I am preparing food when the items I'm using are from local producers.

Melinda Clark says …

I love the knowledge that buying local saves gas and supports the community in which you live.

Deanna Matyskiel says …

Buying from local producers is exciting because I'm enjoying the best, most fresh products while supporting my community!

Angie Parker says …

I choose local because the short time between when the produce is picked and the time it reaches my table means the food is so much more "alive" than that that has travelled by truck for days, etc. And it just feels healthier to consume!

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