Frontier Food Co-Op began as a two-person operation in 1976 in a river-side cabin in Eastern Iowa and has since grown into a cooperative 40,000 members strong that provides the highest quality all-natural herbs and spices to retailers across the country. Frontier has always been at the forefront of sustainably sourcing their inventory, raising awareness for ethical causes, and ensuring their partner farms benefit from the projects that Frontier initiates. In 1978 they were among the first to add all-natural products to their inventory (many years before the Organic program was introduced in the US) and in 2012 they launched the first Non-GMO Project verified products – including the first Non-GMO verified bananas. Frontier is also responsible for introducing Fair Trade Organic teas and spices to the country, publishing numerous sustainability reports to mark their progress, and ultimately enhancing the livelihoods of thousands of communities around the world across decades of passionate work. 

Sustainable Products

Frontier has a clear vision of quality and sustainability, they strive to combine the highest quality with affordable prices to make all-natural and organic products accessible to more people across the country. They actively seek to recruit organic growers – partnering with thousands of smallholder farms around the world and investing in their development to be more sustainable, healthy, profitable, and resilient. Frontier combines a strict attention to detail with sophisticated technology to accurately test samples of their products for the best possible quality. Using their in-house lab and cadre of scientists, they maintain the highest quality assurance standards for their products. Their transparency concerning ethical sourcing and best-management practices gives customers an intimate view of their philosophy towards sustainable development while ensuring that they purchase some of the highest-quality herbs and spices on the market.

Philanthropy and Sustainable Development

From supporting their owners with profit sharing initiatives to creating projects that channel resources toward growers in communities located in the Global South, Frontier Co-Op has a history of philanthropy and sustainable development across their supply chain. They give 4% of their pre-tax profits to causes and organizations around the world that inspire wellness and sustainability in the communities where their products are sourced. From hosting annual conferences on herbs and sustainable living to introducing the first 100% organic line of products, from piloting the first Fair Trade certified teas and spices in the US to establishing scholarships at American universities dedicated to studying the development of sustainable food systems….. Frontier Co-Op truly embodies the ethos of sustainability and makes every attempt to use its business model as a lever to enhance local and global food systems across environmental, economic, and societal paradigms. 

Check out their line of products always available in our bulk foods section at the Swarthmore Co-Op. With affordable prices, the highest standards of sourcing, and the knowledge that every purchase makes a tangible impact – come support our mutual cause of sustainable development through food! 

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