With so much interruption to your usual shopping routine, it may seem like all of your favorite products are hard to find. Running errands in a socially-distanced world also requires significant time and planning to look up each business’s offerings and hours of operation.
Luckily, there’s a simplified shopping experience you can explore from home: the Loudoun Made, Loudoun Grown Marketplace.
The Marketplace, launched last week, allows you to browse and buy from a wide selection of Loudoun’s homegrown industries, including farms, wineries, and artisan crafters.
“This is really a project we’ve had in mind for some time now, and there’s no better time to launch it than right now,” explained Chris Blosser on the #LoudounPossible Pod. Blosser is Loudoun’s rural business development manager.
The Marketplace is a new offering from the Take Loudoun Home initiative, which seeks to strengthen farm-to-consumer connections in Loudoun County. The initiative engages a wide variety of vendors thanks to a collaboration between Loudoun Economic Development, Visit Loudoun, and the Loudoun Chamber of Commerce. Take Loudoun Home offers something for everyone, with 400 local businesses searchable in two interactive maps.
In addition to serving as a hub for consumers, the Marketplace allows Loudoun residents to support neighboring farmers and other rural businesses who are currently unable to supply retailers and restaurants.
“We are a large, diverse county but we are a county that truly supports one another,” emphasized Beth Erickson, Visit Loudoun President and CEO. “We are in the best possible shape to come out of this over the course of the next six months [as] a really strong community, because we went into it as a really strong community.”
The Loudoun Made, Loudoun Grown Marketplace is also the first step into e-commerce for many of the participating businesses. Like a virtual farmers market, you can shop for craft brews, specialty meats, and unique gifts. The platform facilitates direct transactions with each vendor and provides an overview of their pickup and delivery policies.