Our History

Naturally Chicago is a community-based program, launched in 2019, that embodies Chicago’s role as an international center for Good Food and Natural Products. This world-class network — fostering entrepreneurship, innovation and thought leadership — is modeled on Naturally Boulder, which has a played a key role in making Boulder a leading hub in the natural and organic product industries.

Production of food and other consumer products has been in Chicago’s DNA since its earliest days. Our city played a major role in the industrialization of U.S. food and consumer products during the 19th and 20th centuries. In our era, Chicago has become a magnet for people pushing for a more decentralized system, based on food and other natural products produced as locally as possible, using regenerative, humane and fair practices that are better for people, better for the planet and better for animals.

Naturally Chicago draws together businesses leaders, entrepreneurs and advocates advancing the Good Food and Natural Products sectors. Naturally Chicago Members will be entitled to participate in a wide range of networking, thought leadership and socializing events with like-minded supporters.

 

Naturally Chicago’s CEO co-founders — Brandon Barnholt of KeHE Distributors, Tony Olson of SPINS, Bill Weiland of Presence Marketing and Jim Slama of FamilyFarmed — are committed to building Naturally Chicago into a vibrant network that supports businesses and entrepreneurs to grow and succeed.