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Grow Local Food Fund

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The Grow Local Food Fund (GLFF) is a branch of the Whole Foods Co-op GIVE! program. GLFF is a grant that provides funding for projects that build the resiliency of our local food economy.

Our current focus supports these categories: emerging growers, emerging food producers, established growers, and established food producers in our community.

Two people are working in a garden. The person on the right, wearing a green sweater and colorful earrings, is holding a cluster of broccoli, likely harvested for their Whole Foods Coop Duluth. The other person, wearing a black shirt, is focused on the plants. Green foliage and trees are visible in the background.
A lush garden filled with green plants and wooden stakes, set against a backdrop of tall grass and trees. The sky is painted with hues of orange, yellow, and blue as the sun sets, casting a serene glow over the landscape.

Berg Park Farm

Emerging Food Producer

Awarded $7,000

Poplar, WI “I’ve worked in agriculture for over 13 years, starting on a local CSA farm before moving to Poplar, WI, where I initially rented and eventually purchased Berg Park… Read More

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A close-up of a freshly baked, golden-brown croissant with visible layers of flaky pastry, resting on a parchment-lined baking sheet. The croissant has a swirl pattern in the center, revealing its intricate, buttery layers and a hint of chocolate filling.

Bread in the Meadow

Established Food Producer


Esko, MN “For the past 8 years, under the Minnesota Cottage Food Law, my husband, Stephen, and I have been selling bread and pastry out of our home regularly and… Read More

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A lush garden with rows of green and red lettuce plants growing in tilled soil. A person kneels down, tending to the plants. In the background, there are various green bushes and tall trees under a light, overcast sky.

Downtime Farm

Emerging Grower


Grand Marais, MN “Our mission is to provide the local community with high quality, sustainably grown vegetables and cut flowers. Last year, after growing and selling casually for years, I… Read More

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A group of five people stands in a row on a farm, with rows of crops extending into the distance. They are dressed casually, wearing hats and sunglasses, under a sunny sky. A greenhouse and trees are in the background.

Food Farm

Established Grower


Wrenshall, MN “Annie Dugan and I have owned this farm since 2010, though the farm operation was begun in 1976. Our passion is providing high-quality food for our community and… Read More

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A field of green crops, possibly onions, with long neat rows stretching into the distance. In the background, there are harvested crops in rows and a red hay rake. A line of trees forms the horizon under a clear blue sky.

Hermit Creek Farm

Established Grower


High Bridge, WI “For the past 31 years, we have strived to use regenerative farming practices designed to focus on soil and ecosystem health, improvement of on-farm biological diversity, water… Read More

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Three large cardboard boxes and a small white box filled with a variety of bagels, some topped with seeds or seasonings. Two brown paper packages tied with green string are at the bottom. The boxes and packages are arranged on a gray surface.

Lift Bridge Bagels

Emerging Grower


Superior, WI “I established Lift Bridge Bagels in 2020 with the desire to provide fresh, handmade bagels, made with organic and high-quality ingredients, to the Twin Ports of Duluth and… Read More

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A variety of bottles filled with amber liquids are arranged on a large, circular wooden slab. The bottles have white labels featuring a leaf design. They are displayed in a well-lit setting, possibly an outdoor market or fair.

Muddy Trails Farm

Emerging Grower


Two Harbors, MN “Committed to sustainable living, we utilize traditional methods and handcrafted techniques to bring our community the best homemade syrup, jam, produce, and farm fresh eggs. Our mission… Read More

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A large pile of dried rice stalks is spread out, covering most of the frame. The stalks are intertwined and have varying shades of brown, tan, and gold, creating a textured and dense surface. The image appears to be taken indoors.

Spirit Lake Native Farms

Established Food Producer


Sawyer, MN “For over two decades, Spirit Lake Native Farms has been a Minnesota-grown product and local source of pure maple syrup and wild rice. Our unwavering mission is to… Read More

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An illustration by Whole Foods Coop Duluth depicting the stages of a strawberry ripening process. The first three stages show green strawberries, gradually turning yellow with green seeds. The final stage exhibits a fully ripened red strawberry with yellow seeds.

New Projects

That help a farm or food producer scale its offerings

An illustration of two purple berries and two green leaves, perfect for showcasing at Whole Foods Coop Duluth. One berry is solid purple while the other is light purple with a star-shaped detail in the center. The leaves consist of one large dark green leaf and one smaller light green leaf.


To facilities or purchases that increase productivity or efficiency

A simple illustration of two red cherries connected by green stems, reminiscent of the fresh produce found at Whole Foods Coop Duluth.

New Equipment

The purchase of new equipment, materials, and more

An illustration of two mushrooms of different sizes, inspired by nature's bounty available at Whole Foods Coop Duluth. The larger mushroom has a brown cap and a beige stem, while the smaller one has a white cap and a beige stem. Both are depicted with simple, flat colors on a white background.


Such as equipment for use over multiple growing seasons

Selection Process

Criteria and Application Scoring

Whole Foods Co-op assembles a Selection Committee with members that represent different roles and perspectives in our community.

Below are the criteria for the grant application scoring process. Each section includes a percentage for how much weight is given.


Owned by women, Black, indigenous, people of color (POC), LGBTQIA+, Persons with disabilities and veterans will be prioritized. White supremacy has deep roots in the US food system. Access to land, capital, and resources has been limited for Black, indigenous, and POC for generations. Also expanding equity to groups not historically represented in the food production economy are women, LGBTQIA+, persons with disabilities and veterans.

Scaling Food Production

Increases access to locally grown and produced options for our community, prioritizing them over distant alternatives.

Long Term Investment

Prioritizes businesses committed to organic practices, local sourcing, and regenerative sustainability, ensuring responsible management of air, soil, and water.

Environmental Sustainability

Elevates applicants facing funding barriers, especially those able to complete partial project components independently. This prioritization underscores resilience and resourcefulness, aiming to support initiatives that can make meaningful progress with available resources.

Project Feasibility

Places importance on the applicant's capability to execute the project successfully. The application includes detailed planning and business owners have experience in similar projects or collaborations with relevant expertise.

Reliance on GLFF Grant

Gives priority to projects that contribute to a long-term investment in a business, such as acquiring equipment for use over multiple growing seasons or production cycles, rather than focusing on items like general operating expenses, packaging, or marketing.

A group from Whole Foods Coop Duluth is working together to assemble a metal frame structure outdoors. One person holds up a set of instructions, while others adjust and support the metal poles. They are on grassy ground with trees in the background under a clear blue sky.


Need more information? Check out the links to the right!

Interested in donations or sponsorships? Head over to our Donations Page

A person wearing a cap and earmuffs operates an old red International Harvester Farmall Cub tractor in a sunny, rural setting near the Whole Foods Coop Duluth. Trees and a clear blue sky are visible in the background.

The Next Application Opens in January 2025

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