Midwest Pantry, a 200-plus member marketing organization for small local-food producers, and several local farmers markets are joining forces to help one of their own who is battling cancer.

Amy Glass, co-owner of Lucille’s Kitchen Garden, a producer of fruit jellies and jams, is fighting an aggressive, late-stage breast cancer and is no longer able to work at the company she started in 2007 with business partner, Zoie Glass, or run the operations of Midwest Pantry.

Amy and Zoie Glass, who also are married, started Midwest Pantry in 2010 with Chad Gillard, a marketing agency professional by day.  

Gillard said Monday that last weekend’s proceeds at two Minneapolis farmers markets mean the Glass family, including their child, is halfway to the “$15,000 that would cover insurance and medical costs for the upcoming year. Relieving this cost burden will allow the company to keep ‘cash flowing’ the business.

 “The food-creator community has responded so quickly and in such a deeply impactful way that Zoie and Amy have gone from considering shuttering the company, when Amy was told she would no longer be able to work, to being able to expand the number of stores which carry Lucille's Kitchen Garden jams. The kindness the staff at local farmer's markets have shown has been extremely humbling.”

Midwest Pantry members and customers at the Northeast Farmers Market on Saturday and at the Linden Hills Farmers Market on Sunday proved this is a good place in which to do business, Gillard said.

“In addition to selling a truck-full of jelly, people donated a tremendous amount," Gillard said. "Customers, market staff and fellow food creators were extremely supportive. Amy had a crowd around her when she arrived each day!”

There will be two more opportunities to participate in the “Kick Cancer – Buy Jam” fundraiser: at the Mill City Farmers Market on Saturday, Oct. 22, and the Midwest Pantry Shop Small Holiday Market in St. Anthony Village on Saturday, Nov. 26. A jar of Lucille’s jam will go for $7; two for $12.

More information: www.Midwestpantry.com

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