We're on a mission to secure the sustainable future of food. Our farmer support programs are centered around lifting up Midwest growers, promoting the environmental stewardship of land and responsible treatment of animals, and building a vibrant market for local, sustainably-produced food in Chicago.
At a traditional grocery store, US farmers only receive around 17 cents of every dollar you spend on food, according to the Farmers Market Coalition. At a farmers' market, farmers receive 100% of your dollar.
Green City Market believes farmers' markets are a powerful instrument of a local food system, and we're dedicated to creating widely accessible marketplaces for local food in Chicago where farmers can make a living wage.
We operate two physical farmers' markets — GCM Lincoln Park (April-November) and GCM West Loop (May-November) — to provide a pathway for local farmers and food producers to connect with over 270,000 Chicagoans each year.
Green City Market was born out of Chicago’s culinary community. Famed food writer and Green City Market founder, Abby Mandel worked together with chefs Sarah Stegner, Rick Bayless, and many others to catalyze the culinary community’s support of local food.
Green City Market believes the culinary community — executive chefs, bartenders, pastry chefs, sous chefs, culinary students, and more — is central to uplifting local, sustainable farmers. We are dedicated to serving as a conduit between farmers and the culinary community.
Our Culinary Connections program encompasses a wide array of activities including culinary demos, behind-the-scenes tours and vendor introductions, chef parking at GCM Lincoln Park, industry events and more — all geared to deepen relationships between Chicago’s food and beverage industry and our local farmers.
farm forward fund
Although demand for locally- and sustainably-produced food is skyrocketing, only 41% of small farmers turn a profit every year, according to Modern Farmer. Given the significant costs associated with sustainable growing practices, Green City Market is dedicated to investing in local, small to midsize farms to strengthen the viability of their businesses.
Market Mentors Award
The Farm Forward Fund | Market Mentors Award is available for Green City Market farmers in their first year of participation at Green City Market. The award supports beginning Green City Market farmers, helping them market their businesses, leverage their third-party certifications, and more effectively tap into consumer demand for local, organic, and/or sustainably-produced food at farmers’ markets.
Crisis Response Award
The Farm Forward Fund | Crisis Response Award is available for Green City Market vendors experiencing extraordinary financial constraints due to a crisis. The award provides temporary, short-term financial assistance to current vendors who are unable to meet essential expenses due to a temporary or unexpected hardship.
We're a market on a mission! Here's what our community of supporters makes possible:
in Farm Forward Fund awards granted in 2022
Plant seeds of change
Did you know it takes nearly $250,000 to bring Green City Market to life each year? We're a 501c3 nonprofit that depends on folks like you to make our markets run and support costs like city permit fees, park maintenance fees, essential staff support, and more.
Ready to grow support for local, sustainable farmers and food producers? Give today and join our community of donors committed to the advancement of local, sustainable agriculture, food system education, and food security in Chicago.
With your support, we can create a more local, more sustainable, more accessible food system together.
UPCOMING Events With GREEN CITY MARKET
From farmers' markets to kids' programming, classes, workshops, and more, check out Green City Market's lineup of upcoming events.