The "Food and Cooking Extravaganza," which also features an
appearance by celebrity chef Patrick Cassata, will be on
Saturday and Sunday in the Orr Building on the Illinois State
Fairgrounds. Expo hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and 10
a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday.
"Illinois is known around the world as one
of the leading producers of agricultural commodities, but many
may not realize that we are also a leading food manufacturer,"
said Gov. Pat Quinn. "This weekend's Illinois Products Expo will
help continue to grow our place in the global market by giving
consumers a chance to try great Illinois-made products. From
pickled asparagus to pecans, the expo will help boost awareness
of Illinois companies, create demand for our products and
support jobs in our food industry."
Illinois ranks first in the United States in sales of
processed food products and third in food processing jobs. The
state's 2,514 food companies employ more than 83,000 workers.
"Among the thousands of expo visitors, we're expecting as
many as 100 food buyers," said Agriculture Director Bob Flider.
"Their attendance is important if we're going to get more
Illinois products on store shelves and begin to realize the
economic potential of local foods."
The expo's food offerings, which can be sampled for free as
well as purchased, will include fresh meat products, candy,
gourmet seasonings and sauces, homemade jams and jellies, and
specialty dressings. A few nonfood items, such as soy candles
and agricultural-based soaps and lotions, will also be on
display and available for purchase.
To quench their thirst, expo visitors will have wines from 20
vintners and beer from two breweries to choose from, as well as
coffee and soda. However, while the food samples are free, there
is a charge for the drinks.
Cassata, executive chef of The Bank restaurant in Wheaton and
an advocate of local, sustainable and socially responsible food,
was a contestant on the Fox television series "Hell's Kitchen."
He will give a cooking demonstration at the expo on Saturday.
A cooking demonstration also is scheduled Sunday. It will be
presented by Jolene Adams of the Culinary Institute at Lincoln
Land Community College.
Admission to the Illinois Products Expo is $5. Children 10
and younger will be admitted free of charge.
There will be drawings for door prizes, including Illinois
products gift baskets and a Weber Genesis E-310 LP gas grill
(retail value $849).
A list of the participating food companies, wineries and
(* new exhibitor)
Southern Sauces, Bloomington
Aunt Em's Gourmet
Popcorn, Deer Creek
Mary Mix, Springfield
C & C Fudge,
Event Catering, Elkhart
Soy Candles, Leland
Ice Cream, Elliott
Darn Hot Peppers,
Pizza, East Peoria
Eagle Bridges Soy
[to top of second column]
*Family Kettle Corn,
Sauces, River Forest
Goose Island Brewing
Foods, Scales Mound
Growers & Vintners Assn., Springfield
Winery & Vineyard, Carrollton
& Cellar, Manito
Producers Association, Springfield
Growers Association, Bloomington
JAVA & Company, Henry
J.D. Mullen Company,
Jimmy B's Super
Jones Boys Market,
Julie's Corner Store,
*Just Right Eating,
Lime Rock Brown Swiss
M & G Foods (Grandpa
Oakland Noodle Co.,
Pasta Alley, Decatur
Ropp Jersey Cheese,
*Shelley's Sweet &
Chunky Salsa, Arcola
Smo Diddly's Pickled
Asparagus, Lynn Center
Spice of Life,
SS Backwards Longhorn
*Sweet Slap'n Salsa
The Homestead Bakery,
Toohill Seed & Beef
Two Fat Guys Gourmet
Uncle Joe's Sauces,
*Voss Pecans, Carlyle
*Wind Ridge Herb
Zillion's Chili, Springfield
Department of Agriculture
file received from the
Illinois Office of
Communication and Information]