Fifth Season Cooperative is a full-service, local food broker. Each member class represents a piece of the local food infrastructure. The co-op builds upon what is already here, working alongside of the larger food system. We benefit from years of know-how, instead of spending valuable time re-creating the wheel. The co-op retains the identity of each food product that we sell, connecting the end-user with the farm or processor, putting a face to the food. By doing so, we create added value and support our region.
The co-op supports many family farms, two distributors and eight regional processors. Our buyers are food service businesses comprised of institutions such as hospitals, schools and elder care, restaurants, and grocery chain deli/bakery departments. Fifth Season sells a full product line of 130 items including meats, dairy, fresh produce, dry goods and frozen products. The co-op, in a brokerage role, supports each product from our member producers and processors.
In 2013, Fifth Season began our next developmental phase for the co-op. With the creation of our new, value-added frozen product line the co-op now has it’s first solely-owned food product. This takes the co-op from a broker role into an entrepreneurial role.
The creation of this frozen vegetable value-added line is the next step to building the co-op’s infrastructure. These frozen vegetable blends have a unique profile. They are versatile; created for institutional use with outstanding flavor and quality, excellent nutritionals, and a local flair. Only produce grown in the Driftless Region, on small, family farms, becomes a part of these blends. The names chosen for the first two blends, WI Potato Fusion and Winter Moon Blend (a winter root vegetable mix), relate directly to the unique local flavors within. All of our produce is grown sustainably, without the use of chemicals, and the products are processed “clean”, without added sodium, fat or preservatives. These attributes make our vegetable blends attractive not only to institutional food service, but restaurants and more.
We, at the Fifth Season Cooperative, firmly believe that every food product has a story to tell. We do not simply sell local foods; we educate our buyers, showing them the world beyond our larger food system. The care and pride that goes into every local product is evident through taste, eye appeal, health benefits and its uniqueness.
What more could you ask for?
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OUR UPCOMING EVENTS:
Reinhart Fall Food Show La Crosse, WI October 14, 2014 La Crosse Center, La Crosse
Fifth Season will share a table with the produce department of Reinhart La Crosse during the Fall Food Show for Reinhart customers. We will have Sno Pac and Haas Brothers at the table with us and will be sampling our frozen value-added blends Winter Moon and WI Potato Fusion.
Feast Local Food Network, Local Foods Trade Show November 3rd, 2014 Rochester MN
Fifth Season will host a table at the Local Food Trade Show focussing on showcasing our frozen, value-added blends. Sno Pac Foods will also have a table at this event. The tradeshow has a focus on local food for food service. There will be a series of workshops for food makers, producers and buyers in the morning, followed by the trade show at 1:00pm. If you are a food service manager or chef, and in the area, please consider attending this great event! Check it out at the link below.