• Connecting Chicago
    to the best of the Midwest

    We work direct­ly with small local farms and ven­dors
    to ensure qual­i­ty, fresh­ness, and build­ing a robust com­mu­ni­ty
    that encour­ages the best prac­tices and sup­ports our local food sys­tems.

Talk to us

Please use the form—we try to reply within 24 hours. Should you need, our department heads are listed below.

Are you a farmer or producer looking to discuss distribution of your product? Please fill out this form.

You can email us at info@localfoods.com, call the store at (312) 432-6575, or visit any day of the week (10-8 weekdays, 9-6 Saturday, 10-6 Sunday).

 

local foods market and distribution departments

Head butcher

Rob Levitt

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Acclaimed chef and butcher Rob Levitt trained in some of Chicago’s best kitchens before opening the restaurant Mado in Chicago. Teaching himself the craft of butchery, Rob and his wife Allie started the Butcher & Larder in 2013 at it’s original location on Milwaukee. Rob is on a mission to help you trust your butcher once again.

Store General Manager

Michelle Erwin

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Michelle Erwin is the Store General Manager for Local Foods. After attending the University Of Wisconsin at Madison, Michelle got the food bug—a passion that inspired her return to school to receive her Health Coaching Certificate at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. Besides being passionate about making your experience at the store the best that it can be, Michelle really loves vegetables.

Meat Manager

Jimmy Shay

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Fresh out of culinary school and looking for work, Jimmy stumbled into the meat business by asking the head butcher at a local shop if he needed full time help. The answer? "Learn how to cut meat" He gladly accepted the challenge. Working as a cook and butcher in massive chain stores to little corner butcher shops and even alongside his mom, Jimmy has spent the last 15 years honing his craft. The last five with Butcher and Larder. He is thrilled to be a part of the amazing team at Local Foods.

Local Foods Catering

Elaine Fosse

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Elaine has been passionate about the hospitality industry from a young age , where she would help her grandmother make phyllo dough at home to sell commercially, or help her father in the family owned home cooking restaurant. She made her mark in the industry with Morton’s Steakhouses, traveling across the country opening new locations and managing the private dining sales. Her professional career from there includes opening and running high volume restaurants on Navy Pier to business development for national catering companies, as well as starting her own business. Elaine has had the privilege to personally meet and manage events for many celebrities and sports figures, as well four U.S. Presidents.

Director of Sales

Dan Dahir

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Dan Dahir is the Director of Sales for Local Foods. A decorated sales veteran, Dan found his calling when he spent nearly a decade working in broadline food distribution. He loves working with chefs in Chicago to help them source the best possible food for their restaurants. An Iowa native who attended the University of Iowa, Dan is passionate about supporting local farmers and telling their stories. Dan and his wife, Jennifer, have 2 children.

Store Purchasing Manager

Ethan Fischer

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Ethan Fischer is the Store Purchasing Manager for Local Foods. Ethan loves small food stores and hails from Green Grocer in Chicago where he managed the store. When not at the store, Ethan and his wife Robyn run Central Pickling, a pickle company making classic dill pickles in handpacked, small batches using local, organic ingredients.

Founders

Founder and CEO

Andrew Lutsey

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Andrew Lutsey is founder and CEO of Local Foods. Andrew began a career in finance, but found greater calling on his family’s 1000-acre organic cattle, hog and poultry farm in Door County, WI. Working on the family farm shaped his vision for Local Foods and instilled a passion for supporting Chicago’s farm-to-fork infrastructure. Andrew started Local Foods to simplify the way Midwestern farmers’ products are brought to market, and to share the treasures available on family farms around the Midwest.

Co-founder

Dave Rand

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Dave Rand is a co-founder for Local Foods. He manages sales of Local Foods’ distribution arm. He cultivates relationships with the Midwest's best farmers and Chicago's best restaurants, caterers, cafeterias and grocers. Dave knows good food. His background includes work for an Illinois grass-fed cattle ranch, an organic heirloom grain farm, a salmon cannery in Bristol Bay, Alaska, and a role as the Farm Forager for Chicago's Green City Market.

Co-founder

Ryan Kimura

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Ryan Kimura is a co-founder of Local Foods. He manages the marketing and information for Local Foods. An advocate for sustainable food, he has worked with numerous good food organizations including the Green Chicago Restaurant Coalition and Slow Food Chicago. Previously, he worked in global strategy and technology advisory roles for Deloitte, the largest professional services firm in the world.

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