CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) – Pandemic restrictions hit central Illinois food producers hard… But delivery services have helped keep them afloat.

Now, many are keeping those services around. Jeffrey and Lauren Brokish, the owners of Central Illinois Bakehouse, said “Market Wagon” helped keep the bread moving when business was slow. It’s an online farmer’s market that delivers products from local businesses to homes across 11 central Illinois counties.

“That definitely was an important resource for us as a platform to get to our customers during the pandemic but the response has been so good that it’s something we’re continuing on with – certainly as people still might be a little apprehensive about getting out,” Jeffrey Brokish said.

He said sourcing ingredients locally has helped insulate them from global supply shortages.
And even though in-person farmers markets are thriving again, customers can still use the service from home.

Right now, Central Illinois Bakehouse is raising money for displaced Ukrainian children and families. You can order Pampushki – a traditional Ukrainian bread with garlic oil – for pickup at Central Illinois Bakehouse or Pekara Bakery & Bistro for $20. 100% of the proceeds will be sent to the International Rescue Committee.