The fact of the matter is that sustainability is a marketing term. Agriculture requires a ton of resources, and is not particularly environmentally friendly... It’s our philosophy to ensure that we minimize that damage.
The way we see it, the better you care for your land and your plants, the healthier your plants. Healthy plants make for the highest quality, most nutrient-dense foods you can find. We work with farmers we know and trust who operate on the same philosophy.
Supporting local agricultural not only means better food for you and the folks you love, it also means supporting the local food economy in a big way. In the last year alone, Tomato Mountaineers funneled over 2 million dollars back into their communities. Each one of those dollars is a big step toward a healthier world.
We love the earth, we’re serious about community, and we have super high standards. We know you do, too.
WE LOVE THE EARTH
An insatiable student of geography, geology, biology, botany, environmental and earth sciences, and natural history, Chris Covelli graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with big aspirations. He bought a piece of land and started Tomato Mountain Farm in 1993 with a loan, a deep love for the earth, an obsession with growing plants, and a ton of grit. With a lot of hard work and a little luck, he quickly found a marketplace for his harvests. He sold his produce to celebrated restaurants like Frontera, was an original vendor at Green City Market as well as many markets around Chicago, and was a part of the early local sourcing initiative in the early days of Whole Foods. It didn’t take long for the name Tomato Mountain to become staple in locavore households around Chicago – Chris’ tireless and innovative approach to farming makes for some of the best produce you’ve ever had. In 2010, tired of wholesale politics, hungry for a more relational way of participating in the economy, he began his home-delivery program.
WE’RE SERIOUS ABOUT COMMUNITY
The Tomato Mountain program originally began as what’s referred to as a CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. It’s one of those things your grandmother probably knows about, and the concept is pretty simple: you commit to a farm, and the farm commits to giving you a recurring “share” of what they’ve grown. While all ways of connecting with customers have their advantages, subscription-based arrangements like CSAs give farmers and customers the best and most consistent opportunity to develop and maintain meaningful relationships.
WE ARE FARMERS & WE KNOW THE FARMERS WE SOURCE FROM
When we say we care about community, what we mean is that we wouldn’t serve you food that we wouldn’t eat ourselves, and, frankly, we wouldn’t source food from a farmer we wouldn’t have over for dinner. While we do continue to grow all sorts of our favorite veggies, we like to focus on the stuff we do best and source from other folks who do what they do best, too. Those farmers we work with are certified organic, or are growing with organic methodologies, period. We work with them because we know them, deeply admire their work, think they grow some of the best produce in the Midwest.
We’re grateful to know and source from following producers: Driftless Organics, Springdale Farm, Mick Klug Farm, Lovefood, Finn’s Ranch, Kilgus Farmstead, Carandale Farm, McCluskey Brothers, River Valley Ranch, Vitruvian Farm, Oriana’s Orchard, Brian Severson Quality Organics, Deerland Dairy, Underground Meats Spicemode, Sylvan Meadows, Jake’s Country Meats, Phoenix Bean, Bushel & Pecks, Wildom Farm, a collection of organic Amish farmers from Wisconsin via a cooperative called Fifth Season (Farmer Levi, Hidden Spring, New Traditions), Ellis Family Farms, Joe’s Blues, Froggy Meadow, Wild Coyote, Smits Farm, Bellbrook Berry Farm, Chicago Indoor Garden, pHlour Bakery, and more. Our list grows by the day. Interested in working with us? Shoot us an email.
PSST, WE’RE ALSO HARDCORE INTO RECYCLING
We work hard to be as close to zero waste as possible. We have solar panels that power our farm, and we give the excess solar back to the grid via our friends at Arcadia. Our warehouse in Chicago where we build all your boxes runs on clean energy from Arcadia as well. All your deliveries arrive in reusable boxes, and we take back any plastic your produce comes in and recycle it in the proper facility.