Menomonie Market Food Co-op has recently received a Buy Local, Buy Wisconsin grant from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP). MMFC will use the money to purchase equipment that will allow the co-op to fulfill their goal of bringing more local food to the Chippewa Valley and to strengthen the valley food system. The new equipment will grow their capacity to process, preserve, and store food.

Starting this summer the food co-op will travel to the Menomonie and Eau Claire Farmers Markets to purchase unsold food that cannot be re-used by the vendors. They also plan to purchase seconds and surpluses from area farmers which will be processed at the co-op into deli meals and other house-made products such as broths, desserts, and sauces. The new project will reduce food waste, provide an additional income stream to farmers, and provide additional local employment for co-op staff members.

Planned partnerships with current and new local vendors include buying seconds from Mary Dirty Face Farm‘s fruit production to make value-added items for sale at our store and consigning crops from local CSA partner, Racing Heart Farm, for the Menomonie Market Food Co-op deli, including basil for year-round, house-made pesto production.

“We are simply thrilled to be awarded this competitive grant,” says Crystal Halvorson, our General Manager. “In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ability of our local farmers to get to market is less clear, and this project is specifically geared to be flexible so that we can make use of food that is otherwise not getting to people or generating income for farmers. We will be able to track exactly how much local food is purchased by us through this grant project and turned into products that our customers can buy all year long. Seeing the increased economic impact of local food from farm to table, while we decrease our reliance on food that we purchase from far away, will be the best part.”

Questions about the program or about participating as a potential partner should be sent to, or you may call (715) 231-3663.

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Steve Hanson

Steve is a web designer and recently retired from running the hosting and development company Cruiskeen Consulting LLC. Cruiskeen Consulting LLC is the parent company of Wis.Community, and publication of this site continues after his retirement.

Steve is a member of LION Publishers and the Local Media Association, is active in Health Dunn Right, and is vice-president of the League of Women Voters of the greater Chippewa Valley

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