Local Food Hero: Local Harvest Grocery and Cafe
Written by Melissa Vatterott, Food and Farm Coordinator. Originally published August 2015.
Their Food Story: Local Harvest Grocery opened in 2007 with a mission to bring locally and sustainably grown and produced foods to St. Louisans, 7 days a week. Local Harvest Grocery strives to provide food mostly from Missouri and Illinois, including products from meat farmers, dairy farmers, and local coffee roasters, as well as baked goods and dry goods from the region. Local Harvest Cafe and Catering, the sister location of Local Harvest Grocery, also contributes a large selection of prepared, ready-to-eat items to the store. The Local Harvest Cafe prepared foods are made with only the best local and organic ingredients, makin
g the cafe unique in the St. Louis area. The Catering company source the majority of its ingredients from within 150 mile radius of St. Louis. Local Harvest Grocery also provides a 60-week local food subscription, called Weekly Harvest.
A Person Behind the Project: Maddie Earnest and her business partner Patrick Horine founded the Local Harvest Grocery in 2007. Back in 2012, Maddie advised MCE Food and Farm Coordinator Melissa Vatterott (when she was still an intern) and Former Director of Environmental Policy Kathleen Logan Smith on the local food movement, when the two wrote and edited the St. Louis Regional Food Study. Maddie wrote Missouri Harvest, a guidebook to eating, growing, and buying local food in Missouri. In June 2015, Maddie and Patrick Horine organized the St. Louis Local Foods Challenge, which involved several events and activities for the month of June to promote eating locally-sourced food as much as possible. Melissa was fortunate enough to be invited by Maddie to participate in one of the events as a panelist on The True Cost of Food panel discussion with four local farmers. Maddie is an avid locavore and MCE is grateful for her many contributions supporting a local food system in St. Louis.