If every Illinois household dedicated just $10 of its existing,
weekly grocery budget towards the purchase of Illinois food
products, the department concludes more than $2.4 billion a year
would be re-invested in the Illinois economy, helping to revitalize
both rural and urban communities.
"We aren't asking consumers to dedicate new money towards this
initiative," Governor Pat Quinn said. "We are simply encouraging
them to shift their purchases to buy Illinois-made products."
Accepting the challenge is simple and would support thousands of
jobs in the farming and food industries. Residents just need to go
http://www.buyillinoischallenge.com/ and take the "Buy
The department has been working with individual food companies and
grocery stores to brand Illinois-made items with an Illinois Product
logo so that consumers can easily find them on grocery store
shelves. Any entity that either produces, processes, packages,
manufactures or promotes a food or agribusiness product in the state
is eligible to participate in the program free of charge.
"Consumers don't always have time to check product labels,"
Agriculture Director Bob Flider said. "Use of this trademarked logo
not only will simplify identification of Illinois foods for the
consumer, but also increase the visibility of participating
companies in the marketplace."
[to top of second column]
The Illinois Product Logo Program is just one piece of a
comprehensive Buy Illinois initiative. Another component, the
"Where Fresh Is" campaign, promotes the consumption of Illinois
With funding from a USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant, television
advertising, billboards and social media outlets across the
state began promoting the "Illinois: Where Fresh Is" logo at the
end of May. The campaign highlights Illinois-grown produce at
more than 300 locations, including grocery stores, farmers'
markets and roadside farm stands.
Each location is displaying an "Illinois: Where Fresh Is" banner
near its Illinois-grown fruits and vegetables section to
encourage consumers to buy local. This is the second year of the
program. Several of last year's participants experienced up to a
50% increase in sales due to the campaign.
[Text received; JEFF SQUIBB, ILLINOIS
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE]