(Photo credit: Fort Collins Coloradoan)
FORT COLLINS - Locally produced food has long been on the minds of diners in Fort Collins. But only recently has it been so abundant on their forks. In large part, LoCo Food Distribution is responsible.
Elizabeth Mozer opened the business two years ago to close the gap between producers of fresh wares and the marketplace for consumers to enjoy them. She experienced firsthand the effects of that hole while trying to extend her family's eat-local philosophy to the concession offerings at the Lyric Cinema Cafe, which she owns with her husband, Ben.
"We were running all over the place to find things," she said. "I would go to Greeley to meet the farmer's daughter from Fort Morgan to buy popcorn. Then I'd be running to Windsor for cheese. Going here for this, there for that - it was getting kind of silly. So we started talking to a lot more folks about how to bring more local foods to the mainstream marketplace."
Ultimately, Mozer would become that conduit. Instead of calling 10 vendors, scheduling 10 separate deliveries and cutting 10 checks to build an inventory of food from the area, restaurants and grocers can simply mine LoCo's catalog, and the company does the rest.
The company has a 5,000-square-foot warehouse in Fort Collins and employs nine - an assortment of delivery drivers, sales representatives and administrative staff. It distributes products grown or processed by vendors within a 400-mile radius - the standard for "local" defined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture - to customers in Fort Collins, Denver, Boulder and everywhere in between.
Read more of Patrick Malone's story in the Coloradoan.
(Copyright © 2013 Fort Collins Coloradoan, All Rights Reserved)