Local Grains Project
Local Grains Project
AS PART OF OUR CONTINUED COMMITMENT to supporting and enriching our community, we’re thrilled to introduce our Local Grains Project – a selection of breads made almost exclusively with locally grown and milled grains along with locally produced foodstuffs (think honey, sorghum, nuts and seeds). This project gives us the opportunity to give a voice to the Missouri/Southern Illinois regional food production ecosystem by delivering thoughtful small batch breads to our local consumer.
This rotating selection of loaves will introduce some of the outstanding agricultural products our region has to offer. Coaxing the most flavor and texture from these freshly milled local grains, we’re creating breads with moist crumbs and terrific keeping qualities at a standard you’ve come to expect from Companion.
Most importantly, we pledge to offer transparency in the process – sharing with you the local grain content and origin of each loaf and introducing you to the farmers, millers and producers that make these great breads possible.
Bread has always been a catalyst for conversation. We understand that to keep that dialog moving forward we must continually push ourselves to do more for our community and our customer. We strongly believe that our Local Grains Project will do just that.
The first bread in our Local Grains Project is a super soft, moist and tender loaf with a wonderful nuttiness from the cooked oat porridge added at the end of the mix. Natural leavening and the local sorghum impart a nice earthy flavor. This bread makes excellent toast and an even better sandwich.
Severson Farms is a small, family-owned business located in Grundy County, IL. Steeped in tradition, current owner Brian Severson and his wife Karen maintain an operation and growing practices developed by his great grandfather, Lars, after he immigrated to the area from Norway in 1866. The bulk of the grain production at Severson Farms is conventional non-GMO corn and soybeans. In 2004, they transitioned 20 acres into organic production and now have 150 acres certified organic by Oregon Tilth.
The decision to go organic was a personal one for Brian. When his children were small they liked to play on the machinery and in the fields. “Many times I had to chase them away because of farm chemicals being used. When I decided to raise sweet corn as a way to get the kids more involved on the farm, the amount of chemicals used to raise sweet corn conventionally made the decision to go organic final.” As time passed, Brian began to appreciate even more the healthier aspects of farming organically – for his family, his land and the folks that buy his products.