As told by Café Manager Kelsey Koch
Celia and Elton Koehn, the dedicated local farming duo of Greens For You in Arthur, IL, have been growing fresh local romaine, butterhead lettuce, and other salad greens for Common Ground Food Co-op for more than seven years straight without missing one weekly delivery! They are so hardworking and we are proud to boast that we received their first ever delivery when they were just beginning their venture and they’ve been a staple local farm in our produce section ever since.
Glow is such a truly fitting word to describe the work and wellness of Lola Pittenger. You may know Glow By Lola for the carefully crafted and aromatic skincare line and wellness products found at Common Ground. Did you know that out of 90+ local producers within 100 miles, Glow By Lola is the closest local producer to the Co-op, just blocks away!
One of the most popular local bakeries in CU is Central Illinois Bakehouse located off of First Street and University Avenue. This bakery is a powerhouse dropping off fresh baked breads and desserts to Common Ground each morning before we open and make the rounds to all other CU local businesses and coffee shops. These bakers are invested, baking in the middle of the night to deliver super fresh goods made with love.
Queen Anne’s Lace is renowned for their local farm to face skin care products made by hand with ingredients grown by Linda Oberg and family in Camargo, 25 miles south from the Co-op. The farm and homestead is home to honey bees, horses, goats, cows, and rows of perennial herbs and flowers.
About three hours south of Common Ground in Anna, Illinois, sits Dayempur Farm: Center for Sustainable Living. This magical place thrives with a supportive Sufi community in the thickly wooded wildlife refuge adjacent to the Shawnee National Forest. The word “Dayempur” stands for ancient or eternal place, signifying the history of the land and how it has been passed through various committed stewards who’ve promised to protect this special land and its waterways.
As fourth generation sausage makers, the Urbana couple, Susan Carano and Claude Cole have made a name for themselves by making delicious homemade sausages using the recipes passed down from Susan’s grandparents. Piemonte Sausage is named after the region, Piemont, where Susan’s Italian family was from. The mountain range featured on their logo and all of their sausages pay homage to the family members and the traditions and flavors passed down through the generations.
Flyway Family Farm is a family owned mushroom farm, tucked along the winding hills of Makanda, Illinois, three hours from Common Ground. A flyway is named for the zone of diverse natural area that migrating birds pass over, that can usually spanning continents.
Along the Iroquis river in Watseka, Illinois, about sixty miles away from the Co-op, live the Moore Family, who own and operate the 100 acre homestead. This farm family’s legacy is unique because both sides of their families come from have century-old family farms, providing the knowledge of over 200 years of generational farming experience. Their Watseka farm, also known as Moore Family Farm, has been farmed sustainably by the couple, Diann and Jim and their oldest son Wes for more than 30 years.
Here at the Co-op, Stan is a household name, known by our staff, owners, customers, farmers, and market goers on a first name basis. Stan S. Schutte is the owner and farmer of Triple S Farms in Stewardson, IL, seventy miles away from the Co-op with the help of his kids, Ryan and Jannie.