Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois is a statewide local food promotional program powered by a coalition of the leading food and farm organizations and agencies across the state. By combining resources, energy, information, and funding, we’re creating powerful database of local food businesses single go-to local food resource for customers.
Registration is open to all direct-market farms that sell their product in Illinois and the local food businesses in Illinois that carry their products. Farms in border communities that sell at farmers markets and restaurants in Illinois are encouraged to register. Full terms of participation can be found here.
- Farmers Markets
- Farm-to-Table Restaurants & Caterers
- Local Food Cooperatives & Grocers
- Artesan Food Producers that use local ingredients
- Wineries, Breweries, and Beverage Producers that grow or source local ingredients.
Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois consists of farms and local food businesses that sell locally grown products within Illinois. Farms outside of Illinois that sell within state lines are eligible to participate. Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois recognizes that it is up to communities to determine their own definition of “local” and that farms located outside of Illinois may still be considered local to border communities. BFBL participants receive the following benefits:
- Participation in a nationally recognized brand that supports local producers and builds community within the local food system.
- A listing featured in the Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois online directory at buyfreshbuylocalillinois.org.
- Opportunities for a profile in the annual printed Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois Guide (30,000 distribution).
- Use of Buy Fresh Buy Local graphics: logo, labels, point of purchase signs, etc. to promote your products and services.
- Access to the Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois industry newsletter with the latest professional development opportunities, workshops, conferences, and trainings across the state.
- Promotion through the Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois media channels and quarterly marketing campaigns to promote the Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois Guide and online directory.
Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois seeks to increase consumer confidence in local food promotions, as well as increase awareness of the importance of supporting local. To be an authentic and transparent source of local food information, we have the following requirements of participating producers and businesses.
All participants must sell locally-grown products within Illinois borders, and comply with the following requirements based on business type. Your business may fit into more than one type. Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois participants create and maintain a profile at MarketMaker.com, where they can identify the farms with whom they do business as “connections.” These connections increase transparency within the network and help Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois participants to promote each other.
|Farm||Operators who grow or raise food or other agricultural products (ex. fiber, nursery plants, Christmas trees) for sale to the public, including: Family Farms, Orchards, Apiaries, CSAs, Farm Stands, U-Pick.||Farming practices must be listed on your profile and must be truthful and transparent.|
|Farmers Markets||A physical space that operates during a specific day and time where farmers and vendors sell food products and other items directly to consumers.||A minimum of two local farms that sell at your market must be listed as connections on your profile.|
|Restaurants, caterers, and personal chefs that commit to providing their customers with locally-grown foods.||Must regularly purchase from and promote at least one local farm. A minimum of one local farm must be listed as a connection in your profile.|
|Artisan Food Producers||Businesses that use locally-grown ingredients to create new products like jams, jellies, breads and baked/prepared goods, cured meats, fermented vegetables, etc. A primary ingredient (i.e. apples in applesauce or oats in oatmeal cookies) must be a locally-grown product.||Must regularly purchase from and promote at least one local farm. This farm must be listed as a connection in your profile.|
|Specialty Beverage Producers||Businesses that use locally-grown ingredients (i.e. grapes, hops, apples) for wine, beer, cider, kombucha, and spirits.||Must raise your own grapes, hops, grain, or fruit, or regularly purchase from and promote at least one local farm. If the latter, a minimum of one local farm must be listed as a connection in your profile.|
|Grocery stores, co-ops, butcher shops, markets, and stores that commit to buying and stocking their shelves with locally-grown products.||Must regularly purchase from and promote at least three Buy Fresh Buy Local Farms. A minimum of 3 local farms must be listed as connections on your profile.|
|Food hubs, food ports, delivery businesses, and larger-scale purchasers who purchase locally-grown products.||Must regularly purchase from and promote at least three s. A minimum of 3 local farms must be listed as connections in your profile.|
- BFBL participants create and maintain a public profile at MarketMaker.com, that represents honest and transparent farming and/or purchasing practices.
- BFBL products must be traceable to a specific farm or business.
- BFBL graphic materials may only be used for locally grown products. BFBL participants that also retail non-locally produced items are expected to take care that the locally-grown products are clearly labeled and promoted using BFBL branding.
- BFBL participants are committed to purchasing local products and strive to increase purchasing power. BFBL participants have a stated business value of promoting local products and supporting the local agricultural community. (See pledge below).
- BFBL participants agree to play an active role in the BFBL Illinois by taking ownership of the program through the use of logo and label graphics, communicating with Chapter coordinators and actively promoting the Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois brand.
- BFBL participants participate in an annual survey.
I pledge to be a transparent source of locally-grown and raised agricultural products for my community. I pledge to promote my agricultural products with integrity, to be transparent about farming and purchasing practices, and to be a proud ambassador of the Buy Fresh Buy Local brand. I join my Buy Fresh Buy Local Illinois partners in working collaboratively to build equitable, vibrant, resilient, and just local food systems across the state.
The success of the program rests on coordinated use of the Buy Fresh Buy Illinois and distinctive graphic marks. PASA, and on its behalf, BFBL, LLC and BFBL Illinois, retain ultimate control over use of the Buy Fresh Buy Local name, marks, and designs. BFBL Illinois members:
- shall use official logos, labels, graphics, tag lines, website URLs, and other information provided in any public description of or reference to the Program (to the greatest extent feasible);
- shall consistently apply the graphic style of the BFBL brand (colors, fonts, etc.) in any relevant promotional materials, in order to maintain the visual strength of the campaign (to the greatest extent feasible);
- shall not modify BFBL brand materials;
- shall provide BFBL with annual updates on the impact of the Program; and
- shall stop any and all use of the Buy Fresh Buy Local® name, marks, and designs if so requested by Buy Fresh Buy Local LLC, PASA, or BFBL Illinois.
Buy Fresh Buy Local® chapters nationwide work to strengthen local food systems and increase the viability of local, independent farms. Community nonprofits, co-ops, agricultural extensions, engaged citizens, and municipalities with the shared mission of expanding the market for locally produced food collaborate to form Buy Fresh Buy Local® chapters. Chapters across the country combine common branding with the ongoing curation of guides, product labels, promotions, and events, to build a network of communities that prioritize and celebrate their local farmers.
The Buy Fresh Buy Local® (“BFBL”) brand is owned and trademarked by the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA), and administered through Buy Fresh Buy Local LLC. As the Chapter Affiliate, Buy Fresh Buy Local® Illinois determines eligibility requirements and participation rules and regulations for businesses in their region that wish to participate in the Program as Members.