A Vermont winter’s great outdoors certainly has its charms - great winter sports, great natural sights to see, great refreshing braces of rushing fresh air - but not so great on the skin ... unless prepared with a soothing balm to keep your skin happy! Kelly and Julie Brochu - the husband and wife team behind Vermont Bee Balm "believe in producing effective, affordable healing balms. People with dry skin problems suffer enough and should not have to empty their pockets for relief." With foundation ingredients of beeswax and olive oil, Vermont Bee Balm's products are simple and effective: "Our balms and body butter are simple, soothing, and much appreciated by folks with sensitive skin/allergies …" When Julie researched into Vermont history, she was interested to find that early Vermont farmers made their own balm from beeswax … Vermont Bee Balm’s Original Beast Balm is now approved for use on organic farms.
Vermont Bee Balm enhances environmental benefits by buying beeswax from local Vermont beekeepers and keeping recycling in mind with the delivery and packaging of the locally made products. In the early 2000's "Julie made balm for craft fairs and family under the name 'Black River Bee Balm'…" Then in 2004, they became Vermont Bee Balm. Now, with a solid line of quality skin care products, Julie and Kelly plan to stay small and continue running their business from home in Craftsbury, Vermont, maintaining the tradition of creating exceptionally high quality Vermont-made small-batch products. You'll be able to find Vermont Bee Balm's products in Lantman's Gift Area at the front of the store near our Floral Department Displays.
"Small is beautiful." Independent small companies who stay small are Vermont's diamonds that keep our state unique. Nitty Gritty Grain exemplifies the quality, care and hard work that are at the center of Vermont independent small businesses. Tom Kenyon and Catherine Kenyon, brother and sister, run Aurora Farm in Charlotte, a sustainable organic Vermont small grain farm: "Tom Kenyon is the farmer ... and Catherine Kenyon, his sister, is the Nitty Gritty production and 'Everything Else' part of the team. We frequently have assistance from Tom’s children, David and Emily, and our many other relatives and friends … Nitty Gritty Grain Company of Vermont started in 2008. It was conceived because Tom Kenyon was already growing and producing animal grade, certified organic grains and a conversation with a neighbor over the fence propelled him into a new endeavor."
Providing Vermont with sustainably organic and locally grown grain is a top priority to Tom and Catherine. The farm grows organic corn, wheat and rye, providing "healthy food options from a single-sourced farm". As well as being certified organic by Vermont Organic Farmers Association, Nitty Gritty Grain's packaging supports a sustainable earth-friendly purpose: “Our one pound products are packaged in biodegradable, cellulose bags that have a 7% water content. All of our other products come in two pound, five pound, twenty-five pound, and fifty pound quantities packaged in brown or white Kraft bags with tin-tie and/or hand sewn."
"We are excited to have our products in Lantman’s Market simply by virtue of the fact that it is a long-time grocery source, close to where we grew up, where we still live, and where we farm. Our Cornbread Pancake & Muffin Mix, with our brand new improved labels, are what we are most excited about at Lantman’s. This mix is delicious, with six recipes inside the bellyband, and extremely ‘cook’ friendly. Try the pancakes, buckles, or muffins that you can make with it!"
You’ll find Nitty Gritty Grain's products located in Lantman’s Aisle Nine - the baking aisle. "We see our company growing slowly, but surely, as we have been since its inception. Corporate is NOT our goal; small is beautiful. The personal touch still speaks for itself!"
The clocks are turning back and bringing in the time for warm, comforting meals that will nourish throughout the Vermont winter. Grand Isle Pasta brings you an array of colorful flavors to satisfy that appetite! Created by husband, wife and friend (Daniel, Gloria and Vince), Grand Isle Pasta brings influences from around the globe to your pasta table: "Our business is the collaboration of two families across two generations … Our head pasta maker and creative talent, Gloria grew up preparing vegetables in simple, flavorful ways with her mother and grandmother in her native Mexico. She learned to make pasta on the border of Switzerland and Italy, from women in Daniel’s [Swiss] family who have been making pasta all their lives. When she, Daniel, and Vince decided to start a small food business in Grand Isle, she knew that she could combine the fresh flavors of her Mexican heritage with the old world pasta traditions of Italy for a unique product that would appeal to the local community and wider world."
Grand Isle Pasta loves to support their community by choosing locally grown ingredients (many of their vegetables and herbs come from Grand Isle County Organic Farmers), participating in farmer's markets and recently partnering up with their local fire department to help fund-raise for a new building - they created "Firey Fusilli" and "Firefighter Fusilli" to help raise the funds needed!
Grand Isle Pasta does not use eggs, salt, food coloring or preservatives in their ingredients - "We believe a natural pasta is a better tasting pasta." The equipment and process is essential as well: “We create simple, flavorful artisanal pastas with tools imported from Italy. We extrude the pasta through brass plates, which creates a coarse textured pasta that carries sauces well. The durum flour helps the pasta keep an al dente texture when cooked. We dry the pastas with a slow, multi-step process so that is retains the nutrients and flavors of the high quality ingredients we use.”
Jalapeño, Basil, Squash … you'll find an exciting array of Grand Isle Pasta in our pasta aisle (aisle 4). Keep this winter warm, colorful and flavorful with fine Vermont artisan pasta!
'Tis the season of chocolate - or at least the 31st of the month is - but why not celebrate a little early? Especially if you’re eating one of Chocolate Hollow's vegan chocolate confections! Maddie Siegel, the owner of this Vergennes, Vermont-based business, has been selling chocolate for approximately two years. She started out with a rented space in New Moon Cafe and now rents her own small kitchen space where she handcrafts her chocolate from scratch using cocoa beans fairly-traded from farmers. All of Chocolate Hollow’s creations are based on a vegan diet - which means Maddie does not use dairy milk in her ingredients - they're Schmilk Chocolates! "The mission of Chocolate Hollow is to provide an alternative to dairy milk chocolate, so as to make it easier for people to rely less on the dairy industry."
"Our dark chocolate is a 72% cacao Bittersweet made from carefully roasted cacao beans that we select seasonally. Our Schmilk vegan milk-style chocolate is a unique creation, made with a wholesome combination of macadamia and organic soymilk in place of dairy. It is so exciting that Lantman's now offers a nice range of our best selling Schmilk chocolate bars - Hazelnut Truffle Logs, Toffee Crunch Logs, and Peanut Butter Logs - alongside our bean-to-bar Bittersweet - our most chocolatey chocolate bar. The bean of the season is from Madagascar- a really amazing flavor!"
With recyclable packaging, fairly-traded and a growing list of organic ingredients, Chocolate Hollow supports environmentally and socially responsible practices - with these values in mind Maddie says, "We are committed to keeping our prices as approachable as possible to bring a quality vegan milk-style chocolate to the people ... We are always experimenting with new combinations of ingredients. Faux-milk chocolate is a very new thing compared with dairy milk chocolate, which has been evolving since the 1800s. We have made many, many test batches of Schmilk over the course of the past few years and it has been a wonderful journey."
You can find Chocolate Hollow chocolates on our front table display as you walk in the door to Lantman's Market. Enjoy fine chocolate this October season and feel good about eating a locally-made chocolate bar that has so many great things going for it!
Also find more information at Chocolate Hollow's website here
Vermont has a long tradition of stewarding the land around us to produce quality-rich goods, be they vegetables and fruits, locally raised meat and dairy ... or beautifully exquisite flowers … Rock Meadow Farm, a small scale Hinesburg flower farm run by Betsy Orvis and her family, grounds itself in healthy growing practices: "I believe in good stewardship of the land, leaving it in a better condition than I found it. This means that I practice crop rotation, soil building using cover crops, compost materials and organic amendments, and biological insect/disease controls.” Betsy also believes “in the local food system/ local agriculture and in the sustainability of locally sourced flowers. I value being a part of the local agriculture community.”
Rock Meadow Farm has been producing stunning Vermont flowers for three years now – this is Betsy’s third season. “I started farming in 1999 on an organic vegetable farm, and it was there that I came to love growing flowers and creating bouquets. I wanted to continue that work for myself and it has slowly evolved from my home gardens to a small scale flower farm.” With help from her husband in tilling and preparing the soil, Betsy is usually hard at work (with her two children keeping her company!) in her expanding flower farm. She follows organic practices (no chemical fertilizers or sprays used) and buys seeds from “small, regional seed companies”, buying organic seeds whenever possible - she has even been able to save seeds produced by her garden and harvest flowers from their plants the following year!
We at Lantman's are looking forward to the amazing flowers, among them oriental lilies, sunflowers and gladiolas (to name just a few!) that will be ready for Rock Meadow's August bouquets. As well as providing bouquets for Lantman's and other local markets, Betsy would like to grow her business in providing flowers for weddings and other special events. "I usually do a couple of weddings each summer, and I'd love to expand that aspect of my farm."
Lantman's floral department is privileged to be able to source such wonderful blooms from a farm so close by! "It is an honor to be able to provide beautiful, colorful, local flowers to my community here in Hinesburg - thanks very much to Lantman's for supporting small, local businesses!" Betsy normally delivers at the beginning of the week, so make sure to check out some amazing local color at Lantman's Market!
We're putting the spotlight on Kimball Brook Farm who will be participating in Lantman's Bounty of Vermont Day July 25th celebration of Vermont companies (fast approaching - See link here) ... As one of Vermont's foremost dairy farms, Kimball Brook Farm has a great, strong foundation based in our home grassland of Vermont. "J.D. and Cheryl DeVos, third generation dairy farmers, bought Kimball Brook Farm from J.D.’s father in 1999, setting about improving its facilities and expanding the herd. After Cheryl attended a Northeast Organic Farmers Association conference in 2000, she realized the immense positive impact organic farming could have on both their business and on the land. Shortly thereafter, the couple embarked on a three-year-long journey toward transitioning their farm to organic."
Originally supplying their organic milk to other companies, "soon JD and Cheryl knew they wanted to bottle their milk here in VT and offer a healthful organic milk throughout the New England milk shed. So on May 17th, 2012, their creamery, Green Mountain Organic Creamery started bottling milk under the Kimball Brook Farm label." Green Mountain Organic Creamery is located only a few yards
away from Lantman's Market right here in Hinesburg!
Kimball Brook's cows graze freely without pesticides or synthetic fertilizer at the farm in North Ferrisburgh, Vermont. "We believe that stewardship of the land and care for the environment produce a product that’s good for the planet, good for the herd and simply good for you." With the recent creation of returnable glass bottles, Kimball Brook fosters a time-honored way to take care of the environment by simply reusing materials. In addition, Kimball Brook also offers many of their products in plastic bottles which are BPA free and recyclable! When available, Kimball Brook tries to source local and fair trade ingredients for their flavored milks.
This farm and creamery has a great tradition of family, integral to the running of the business everyday. " JD and Cheryl oversee every aspect of the farm and the bottling plant and are working in both locations 7 days a week. Their daughter Hilary is involved every day, either at the farm or in the creamery. Their other children, when in VT, work side by side with their parents. They also have nieces and nephews who help out and some are employed full or part time. Those who work for them who are not family are certainly part of the KBF family."
Kimball Brook extends this welcoming environment to a wider community: "We are expanding our connection to our local area by offering Sunday Dinner at the Farm. Our first dinner was on June 14 and was a wonderful afternoon of great local food, entertainment and games for the kids. So we would love to invite everyone to join us at the next dinners on July 12, August 9, September 13 and October TBD, 1-5pm. For more information, please visit our events page on Facebook or email email@example.com"
Kimball Brook will also be joining other premier Vermont companies welcoming the community at Lantman's 4th Annual Bounty of Vermont Day! Make sure to stop by and enjoy a taste and samplings of great Vermont products and meet the entrepreneurs who create them on Saturday July 25th between 11am - 4pm at Lantman's Market in the heart of Hinesburg!
Local Vermont companies make a difference throughout the world. Vermont Artisan Coffee and Tea Company's enterprise, skill and collaborations benefit the lives of cultivators around the globe, enhance local Vermont communities and bring the exquisite scents of freshly brewed coffees and teas to the tables of our customers. Choices are made at this family-owned Vermont company according to a long term commitment to sustainability for the entire planet.
"Vermont Artisan Coffee & Tea Co. was founded by coffee expert Mané Alves in 2001 as an offshoot of his Coffee Testing Laboratory called Coffee Lab International. Mané would travel to source countries for CLI and would discover great coffee beans. He started the roastery so that he could import those green beans; then artisan roast them back home in Vermont." Mané travels to form close relationships directly with farmers and coops as well as utilizing Fair Trade and Organic suppliers - important factors that honor Vermont Artisan's core values: "Quality. Integrity. Sustainability."
"We try to incorporate environmental and social considerations in to our decision making processes – whether it be using compostable 5 lb. coffee bags and tea sachet material; selling our teas and some coffees in reusable tins; offering organic, Fair Trade, and Direct Trade coffees and teas." The Vermont Artisan Coffee and Tea Company also likes to support local businesses and vendors, "so often we will make purchasing decisions that create the smallest footprint environmentally."
Mané and his wife Holly own and run their business believing in “Buy Fresh. Buy Local!” producing freshly roasted coffee in small batches. They enjoy creating relationships with the local community, and "our plan is to build a new 12,000 sq. ft. facility in Waterbury this coming year which incorporates the Coffee Lab, Vermont Artisan Coffee Roastery, CLI’s School of Coffee classrooms, and a Café."
Recently, Vermont Artisan has expanded its offerings to include carefully selected premier teas. Lantman's Market is excited to have added Vermont Artisan teas to our newly expanded tea selection! From English Breakfast (grown in the Iyerpadi Estate in the midst of Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary) to Hibiscus Blossom (a beautiful blend of hibiscus blossoms with vibrant fuchsia color and delightful floral aroma), these artisan teas have a unique blend of flavor and are a great choice for those looking for an organic, local and socially responsible choice! Lantman's also carries a wide array of fresh Vermont Artisan Coffees: All of Vermont Artisan's coffees are roasted fresh when ordered. To find out more information about Vermont Artisan Coffee and Tea Company visit their website here.
April - in Vermont - means the perfect time for a spring clean!!! Why not choose cleaning products that promote a healthier space? Choose the right tools and cleaning supplies to ensure a healthy impact on our environment, especially with Earth Day approaching on April 22nd! "To replace yucky stuff with yummy stuff": the owner of Vermont Soap Larry Plesent and his team hold this priority for Vermont Soap's entire range of products ~ Sounds like a perfect way to get started!
"Vermont Soap started in a little farmhouse on the side of RT7 in Brandon in 1992. Hurt by over-exposure to common cleaning chemicals used in his window cleaning business, founder Larry Plesent vowed to replace every personal care, pet and cleaning chemical used at home and work with safe, nontoxic, natural formulations."
All of the cleaning and personal care products produced by Vermont Soap are filled with simple, effective ingredients that support a healthier environment. Many of the products have an organic food standard certification from the Vermont Organic Farmers division of NOFA. VT. Using plant based dyes where they can and supplying palm oil from a producer who just recently received a sustainability award from Greenpeace, Vermont Soap products send out an empowering message.
"We have been working with the women of Northern Ghana to provide a market for their now certified organic, hippo friendly shea butter since 2001", says owner Larry Plesent. From Africa to Middlebury, Vermont, Larry and his team take steps to help create strong communities with the support of a great line of products. Taking a look into the future Larry sees " a large complex of buildings, more like a campus than a factory…I am really really old and taking business meetings in the community garden while children play in the company day care nearby. Everyone looks too happy to be at work."
Lantman's Market carries a large abundance of Vermont Soap products - from Liquid Sunshine to Foaming Hand Soap - located in our soap and cleaning aisle. We've recently added a great array of "Naked Soaps" - that is, soaps without any packaging (another way Vermont Soap helps support the environment!) ~ find these wonderfully scented soaps in Aisle Eleven! To find out more about Vermont Soap visit their website here!
It’s the Lantman’s Welcome to the New Year Double-Month Blog! The local Vermont company that can take you right through the wintry chills of January and February is Teeny Tiny Spice! Exotic spices and seasonings dear to home will keep your plates hot and cozy no matter what the weather outside …
Spice mixtures can often be the secret to a good recipe - bringing a meal from bland to fabulous. Start the year off the exciting way by traveling around the world - in your own home - choosing an array of spice mixtures blended together by Teeny Tiny Spice Co. of Vermont!
A family business with Thora, Ed and their children, Teeny Tiny Spice is a unique Vermont company, offering a wide selection of steel tinned organic spice blends from Ethiopian Berbere to Montreal Seasoning.
"The first store that Thora tried to get to carry them said they would never sell … not even as a gift … luckily she just headed right back out to try again. In four years we have sold over 100,000 tins of spice!" Yet even while having grown much faster than they had at first anticipated, they "are committed to being uncompromising in the quality of [their] product and the service that [they] provide." With core values of honesty and integrity, Thora and Ed run a business that anticipates what their customers, stores and vendors need without being asked.
Sourcing ingredients from all over the world, Teeny Tiny Spice is USDA organic and certified by Vermont Organic Farmers in Richmond. They are also certified Kosher by EarthKosher. The spices are packaged in recyclable and reusable tins ("great for storing buttons, nails, hooks, etc"). Teeny Tiny Spice also donates spices to local events such as the Junior Iron Chef competition!
"We really appreciate our customers and our stores. This work can be tiring and stressful, but when we get a “Thank You” from somebody for what we have created, when people tell us that our spices have changed their lives, that our spices have made their families want to sit down and eat a meal together, all of the hard parts of making a business run are worth it. So we want to thank all of you for making it possible for us to have this incredible life experience."
"Lantman’s carries a huge selection of our spices tucked on one shelf! We would love for people to try any of the blends that strike their fancy."
You can find Teeny Tiny Spice Blends in a wide range of varieties and heat levels on the end-cap between aisles 8 and 9 in Lantman's Market. Pick up recipe cards, located right next to the spices to inspire new meal ideas and start out 2015 with some new and exciting dishes!
With the cozy winter months coming, Blake Hill Preserves gives us the bright colors and tastes of summer to enjoy all year long. With only 5 years in business Blake Hill has already won three Good Food Awards for their Grapefruit, Lemon & Thyme Marmalade, their Raspberry & Hibiscus Jam and their Moroccan Plum & Fennel Chutney - definitely ensuring a good autumn/winter pick-me-up!
Vicky, co-owner of Blake Hill with her husband Joe, says, "I am a third generation preserve maker from England, growing up picking fresh fruit from local farms with my family and then making jam on our return home. Upon moving to Vermont in 2004 we discovered wild blackberry bushes growing at the edge of the woods on Blake Hill and so got back into making preserves again. In 2009 a friend snuck a jar to the owner of Grafton Village Store and she immediately agreed to sell it, providing us our first order – albeit completely unexpected! Demand was much bigger than we could meet on a part-time basis so we gave up our full time jobs and built our own dedicated Preserves Kitchen at Blake Hill in Summer 2012 and have not looked back since!"
Lantman's Market carries a wide variety of local products, from jams to specialty soaps. In this space we will highlight each month a company who works with us to sell some of Vermont's most outstanding products. Scroll down to check out our blog to learn more about the companies behind some of the products that you see on our shelves!