About Us

Steve and Anita Spencer and their two children live in Sheridan, Indiana, working with pride on farmland that has been in their family since 1838, known as the Kercheval homestead. LocalFolks Foods started as an outgrowth of their innovative, natural farming venture, Homestead Growers, using excess harvest from their mushroom and produce operation. In just a few years, Steve and Anita, along with Paul Skirvin, have created a diverse line of natural and wholesome foods, emphasizing a simple ingredient list, and an identity rooted in the soils and flavors of the Midwest. Steve and Anita continue to lead the growth of the LocalFolks Foods line.


Paul Skirvin, a LocalFolks Foods co-founder and partner, has labored in the fields of organic and natural foods since 1970. Paul’s industry experience includes working produce and as a miller for Fred Rohe at one of the Bay Area’s earliest natural foods stores; produce manager at New Leaf Community Market in Santa Cruz; produce manager and launching a farmers market at Bloomingfoods Co-op in his home town of Bloomington, Ind.; working in Chicago at a leading organic distributor, Goodness Greeness; and learning about value-added food processing at M&D Foods in Columbus, Ind. With this background, Paul has been able to realize his dream of a producing a line of clean, Midwest-sourced and flavorful foods, by linking up with Steve and Anita Spencer to build the LocalFolks Foods brand. Paul currently lives in Chicago and oversees product development, quality control, and is the creative inspiration behind the innovative LocalFolks Foods line.


Rachel Veltman is LocalFolks Foods’ director of sales and marketing. Rachel has contributed her passion for sustainable and local food and her professional expertise to several Chicago area organizations, including marketing and outreach for Green City Market. She built upon this experience and a concurrent career in marketing, communications and business development in professional services consulting to pursue her passion full-time. She worked as director of marketing at Goodness Greeness, the largest privately held wholesale organic produce company in the U.S, and founded TheBeeBuzz.org to increase awareness of the importance of honeybees to our food system, before joining LocalFolks Foods.


Dave Gutknecht represents LocalFolks Foods to stores in the Upper Midwest from his home territory of Minneapolis-St. Paul. Dave became active in food co-ops in the 1970s and has made a career as an educator, writer, and networker for natural and organic food cooperatives. In 1979 he became the editor of the first national trade magazine for these co-ops, and he has been editor of Cooperative Grocer, a unique trade magazine written by and for food co-op leaders, since its founding in 1986. Dave is known for his advocacy and support for values-based businesses, professional management, and principled governance. During years of conversations about growing natural and organic food businesses, Dave helped Paul Skirvin develop the dream of a Midwest regional label of clean products: LocalFolks Foods.

localfolks in the wild
  • The Spencer Family, founders of LocalFolks Foods
  • Our Product Lineup
  • Localfolks products on display at Whole Foods