Helping to make local foods once again a viable choice…
Years ago, all food was local right? What happened? Well…at a glance…cars and sprawl, and small farms became bigger farms, and years flew by with convenience trumping health. Today we are in the throws of an obesity epidemic with most of our food travelling more miles than we do. According to the Centers for Disease Control, children today are from the first generation that are not expected to live as long as their parents. How can our lifepan be getting shorter??? We eat but what exactly are we eating? While this discussion is much larger than the time we have, let’s look at one solution…Connecting local growers to local eaters! Won’t you connect with us?

Our History:
Champaign County, Ohio is home to real agriculture. Rolling hills and plains share some of the most fertile soil in the Midwest. From potatoes to raspberries, corn to beans, and shrimp to buffalo, we have a diverse heritage that marries large and small-scale agriculture. Agriculture is our number one export but are we eating, well, healthy? We have been successfully “growing” our farmers’ markets for many years, even winning the Best Small Farmer’s Market in 2010 for our Champaign County Farmers’ Market as awarded by the American Farmland Trust. Combining that also in 2010 with our county seat of Urbana being awarded “Best Hometown” by Ohio Magazine and this is one cool place to live! So comes the transition to the next step in agriculture…the virtual market…first in the state of Ohio as we know it. We look forward to uplifting our producers and connecting even more customers to healthy, locally grown and produced items! Won’t you grow with us? Stop back often and see our expansion.

Started with a grant from Activate Champaign County and the Champaign Family YMCA from the YMCA of the USA, the virtual farmers’ market is becoming a reality. Known as Pioneering Healthier Communities, the YMCA is instrumental in working towards getting our communities healthier by facilitating increased physical activity and healthier eating. Discussed for the last few years with the Local Foods council and other community groups, we are pleased to be opening the market in the spring of 2012. We invite local growers and producers who believe that shopping local is vital to the local economy and eating healthy, locally-sourced, nutrient-dense food is vital to our, well, personal health.

Our Mission:
The mission of the market is to provide increased sales opportunities for local producers and consumers while keeping sales dollars in the local economy. “Local” is loosely defined as derived from Champaign County and the surrounding area. Preference will be given to vendors from within the county but items not currently available from within the county will also be welcome. Limitations will be discussed on a case by case basis and as needed. Preference will also be given to sustainably raised items but conventional growers are welcome as well.

Why support Locally Grown?

Enhance the local economy: By purchasing produce and other items from local growers you are providing stability to your local economy through the support of local businesses.

Save Natural Resources: Buying locally makes you an invaluable link in the process of saving resources such as fossil fuels and packaging materials. Also, we are right here in your community so the expense of transportation and delivery is kept to a minimum.

Provide Learning Opportunities: Locally Grown supporters provide member growers the means to help educate our community about the importance of sustainable agriculture.

Supporting a Way of Life: The number of small farms in the United States has decreased dramatically in the last decade. Please help us preserve an honest and worthy means of making a living.

Health and Wellness: We can do more to eat better and move more. That is the golden ticket to a balanced and healthy body. Healthy, nutrient-dense food is food that is fresh and recently picked at the peak of ripeness…not the peak of when it was needed to travel to make it onto a store shelf. We know we are the only one responsible for our own health. What we put in is fuel for our system. Our system, otherwise known as our body, needs us to feed it and take care of it. Sustainable eating is a part of the overall solution to being healthy. We believe that diverse, family-owned farms contribute to society’s overall health.

Ordering Options
Unlike other co-ops, buying clubs, or CSAs where everyone gets the same box of stuff (and you don’t know what you’re getting until you get it), with Locally Grown you get to order what you want, in the quantities that you want, from the farms that you want. The weekly email lists the produce, milled products, fresh flowers, and artisan goods available that week, and you can browse the items on this website before you place your order.

Other Important Items
Placing Orders
Each Thursday evening, following the market pickup, the market will reopen with a list of available products for the week. The market generates a list that is sent to everyone with an account, by e-mail. Customers must place their order for the week any time after that email goes out, but no later than Tuesday morning at 8am. Orders are placed here on our website.

Growers receive notification of their orders Tuesdays at 8pm, and harvest on Wednesday and Thursday.

Picking Up Orders
From 4:00 until 6:00p.m. on Thursday, now at 1645 St. Rt. 54, Urbana, Ohio, on site at Oakview Farm Meats retail local shop. It’s so easy, and contactless! Just pull into the drive, line up behind the cars ahead of you, and wait for your orders to be brought to your car, and loaded for you! So easy!!

We also offer a Friday morning pick up, if your schedule does not permit you to pick up on Thursday evenings! Also, at Oakview Farm Meats, 10am-12pm!

If you are coming to us via our partners at Clem & Thyme, in Yellow Springs, we will deliver your orders to their farm offices, every Friday, after 1pm, for you to pick up! There will be a small delivery fee attached to your orders through them!

In the winter months, with unpredictable weather, we know it can be hard to get out, on the roads. If you would like, you can let us know if you need your order delivered, instead! Small delivery fees will be attached to your orders, depending on locality!

Gift Certificates are available! If you would like to purchase a gift of health and flavor, please consider a Locally Grown gift certificate. You can decide the amount and the lucky recipient can purchase locally grown produce!

Please contact Pam Bowshier at cosmiccharliebread@yahoo.com with any questions.