Fellowship Foods was founded in 2006, but really began long before that.
I grew up with stories of The Kohser’s and the Hodil’s, both of my paternal grandparents, and the food that they grew on their farms just outside of Pittsburgh: stories of going to the East Liberty Farmers Market, raising tomatoes for Heinz, and selling eggs to bars and restaurants throughout the North Side. My grandfather, Russ Kohser, founded Best Feeds & Farm Supplies in 1945. Best Feeds grew to become a chain of feed stores throughout Alleghany County and a Feed Mill in Oakdale, PA. Once the farms left Alleghany County the stores gradually became garden centers and the mill started Manufacturing Joy Dog Food.
Farming and agriculture became my birthright, as a child I remember working in my Dad’s garden (almost an acre in size). As a young adult I slowly began to realize how I was blessed to know where my food was coming from. I began to see local farms become sub-developments and our food was coming from farther and farther away. Farming’s new motto was becoming “bigger is better: one size fits all”. They were accelerating the use of pesticides and genetically modified seeds in order to increase size and production. Food began being raised for travel and not for taste and Americans started getting obese.
I knew this could be done differently, so in 2006, I founded Kohser Farms, now called Fellowship Foods.
My Mission is to bring healthy good tasting food from our local farmers to our local eaters. Our emphasis is equally dedicated to supporting our local economy and in providing products that are raised in an environmentally sustainable way.
Last year our customers spent approximately $240,000 on local food. Of which $240,000 stayed right here in Western PA. Let’s see what we can do this year!