MM Local: Preserving Summer Sunshine

As all of that gorgeous summer produce is coming into season, we foodies can have a lot on our minds. Hypnotized at our farmer’s markets by bright offerings that grow steadily larger and more flavorful with each passing week, many of us can’t wait to get home and whip them into something delicious. Those long winter months seem a distant memory but there is always the idea of that rather daunting task, canning and preserving summer harvests, lurking somewhere in the depths of our brains. The idea can be stressful, even for the experienced canner, as summer produce can arrive in all its full-fledged glory and be gone in a flash.

Luckily for those of us in Northern Colorado (and across the state) some lovely fellows from Boulder have taken out the guesswork.  In September of 2009, Jim Mills and Ben Mustin launched MM Local, with the vision to fearlessly provide customers with fabulous, local fruits and veggies year-round through preserving.  They partner primarily with small, organic growers across the Front Range and Western Slope to get produce at the peak of its season and then keep their products pure, simple and scrumptious.

We spoke to MMLocal’s Community Manager, Vanessa Rathbone, about the company that’s bringing us delectable local food in the form of bottled sunshine:

MMLocal preserves are special in that they each carry a code which customers can use to “track” their food on your website. What does this mean and why did you decide to include it in your product? 

Each jar has a traceability sticker on the lid that indicates what farm grew the produce inside that particular jar and where they are located in Colorado. The main reasons why we include this information are education and transparency. We want our customer to know exactly where their food is coming from and which amazing farmer grew the produce in that particular jar. We want people to connect to their food and appreciate that they might know the farm that grew it. Another important reason is to give credit to the farms that we partner with by acknowledging that they grow the amazing produce that we are lucky to preserve!

 –How has/is your company planning to grow and to what extent do you think the locavore movement is more that a trend?

Our mission is to become the leading brand for authentic food. We hope to grow by preserving local produce in other markets eventually, keeping the same model of partnering with local farms and preserving what grows best in those particular areas. We are finding more and more that the eating local trend is become more of a movement and not vice versa. People are learning the true benefits of eating local food and sourcing local products. It stimulates their economy, they are building relationships with their community and they are connected to their food on multiple levels. Eating local is more than a trend and we believe it is paving the way for a more sustainable food system which we greatly need.

 -There’s a bunch of tasty sounding recipes on your website that use MMLocal products. Which is your favorite right now, for early summer before things like peaches and tomatoes have officially come into season? 
Here are 2 recipes that are great for the summer:

Our signature chimichurri sauce is great with anything off the grill, on toasted baguettes, fresh pasta, etc.


Another favorite for a summer dessert is our peaches poached with fresh basil!


At the Cupboard, we’ve become big fans of MM Local products, and love the fact that they are making tasty local produce an easily-accessible reality. Not to mention that now if we don’t get around to canning at home, we now have an awesome, conquerable alternative. Kudos to MM Local, for bringing local food closer, throughout the year!

MM Local will be in the store sampling their products on Saturday, June 23rd from 1 – 4 PM so we invite you to come down and try their flavorful offerings for yourself.