ED KUGLER – Organic Grower and Organic / Natural Food Consumer Direct Marketing Specialist


  • Ed has been involved in the organic food movement for over 40 years, and has dedicated his life to educating people about the benefits of eating organic.  He also believes that the vegetarian and vegan lifestyle is beneficial for our health and that of our planet.

Ed Kugler

Ed Kugler


·  Ed was born in Chicago and his parents moved to Highland Park in 1959. He was raised in a very conventional home with a very conventional diet. He began his journey in 1970 at Michigan State University where he took introductory hotel and restaurant management classes. At that moment his life changed for what he believes was for the better. He was taught at MSU that the way something looked and tasted was more important than how it was grown and what the ingredients were. This did not make sense to him, and thus began a quest, which changed his lifestyle forever.

·  He read excerpts from Adelle Davis’ book, Let’s Eat Right to Keep Fit: A Practical Guide To Nutrition Designed To Help You Achieve Good Health Through Proper Diet. He still remembers her famous slogan, “You are what you eat.” 

·  He continued his self-taught education by reading ingredients, articles, and attending seminars and events throughout the country. All of his learning supported his belief that eating organic and making sustainable lifestyle choices was a healthier and better choice. He felt that following this path would be better for him personally, as well as for the sake of our planet.

·  As a kid thirsty for knowledge, in 1976 he traveled over 5,000 miles from coast to coast visiting 14 organic farms, 52 natural food stores, 37 natural food restaurants, 19 distributors, and 13 co-ops, seeking answers to his many questions. 


Enjoy Ed's creative endeavors listed below and how he began his Organic Lifestyle:

·  After his early life experience traveling the country sides, he returned home and met Tom Ulick, who became his farming mentor. Tom was the only local Organic grower nearby in the Barrington area. Since Ed was a recent organic / natural food vegetarian their relationship sprouted. Soon thereafter, Ed asked grammar school friend, Lenny Resnick to use some of her land on her estate. 

This was his first attempt to grow anything organic. Dozens of grape vines were planted and a vegetable garden. It only lasted a couple of years because his friends moved.

·  From 1978 to 1981, he became a sprout farmer, and grew 10 varieties of sprouts in Highwood, Deerfield, Evanston and Chicago Illinois. He was one of the original vendors at the Ravinia Farmers Market. He opened the first of its kind, organic and natural food buying club store and deli in Highwood, Illinois called the Sprout Shop.

·  From 1987 to 2001, he created and operated six Natural Food Dance Festivals with live music and food offered by local natural food restaurants. There were up to 450 people in attendance at these events, located at the Levy Center in Evanston and the Highland Park Country Club.

·  In 1988, he created the “Taste of Health” at the Halsted Street Market Days, the largest block party event in Chicago at he time, He operated 10 booths, representing a variety of organic and natural food manufacturers who introduced their products to the public. Over 100,000 people visited this event.

·  In 1988, Ed traveled to the International Culinary Olympics, Frankfurt, Germany, to film and document the American Natural Food Team, headed by Brother Ron Pickarski, the only certified vegan executive chef, competing and won a Silver medal. Brother Ron continued in the every four-year competition, eventually was awarded a gold medal for his presentation. His latest book, The Classical Vegetarian Cook for Professional Chefs and inspired Cooks is now available.

·  In 1990 - 1992, Ed's company Natural Needs opened an all organic store / vegi deli in Highland Park, the only one of its kind in the Chicagoland area named Sprout Shop Pure Food Market.

·  From 1990 to 2003, Ed created the Organic Farmer’s Market and Food Festival (September), as well as Earth Day in Illinois (April) , which were outdoor events at the James Thompson Center in Downtown Chicago. This event was attended by over 10,000 people each year. His company also provided the planning and execution of the 20th and 25th Anniversary dinners for Earth Day at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chicago, where Senator Gaylord Nelson and Dennis Hayes, the founders of Earth Day were honored guests. 

  • 1997, Paul Sturvis, at Goodness Greeness asked for Ed's help procuring donations for the Farm Aid concert that was moved to Chicago at the last minute. 

  • With only three weeks before the concert, and with help from Reed Glidden at Choice Marketing, Ed and his crew successfully acquired over $10,000 worth of Organic produce, including meat, dairy, and breads, and served over 1,000 musicians, VIP’s, staff, volunteers, and guests. The food was well received, and was even mentioned on stage by Neil Young.

  • From 1999 to 2004, Ed reestablished the Chicago Vegetarian Society, with over 150 members and organized the annual gala, Turkey Free Thanksgiving Dinner.

  • In 1999, he created the first Organic Food Booth at the Chicago Blues Festival.

  • In 2001, Ed developed and started the Taste-A-Thon concept, bringing organic and natural food samples to local elementary schools to introduce kids to healthy food choices, and provide further information on where to find their favorite products.

  • In 2009, he created Organic Teaching Garden, an edible landscape in my own backyard, where from 2011 to the present, where people interested in learning about producing organic food can get their hands dirty and grow their own vegetables in his large garden.


ROBERT C. BOYCE – Landscape Contractor and Architect

For the past 30 years, Robert has used his horticulture degree, landscape architecture license and passion for nature to generate ideas and bring a unique creative flair to the use of outdoor spaces, while always maintaining a harmonious balance with nature. He is a pioneer in wetland, prairie and shoreline restoration and an avid environmentalist. He possesses an abundance of knowledge in plant cultivation and propagation.

Robert has a long history of organic farming dating back to the days of his Grandfather, who farmed with a team of horses.  He now grows on a smaller scale but more intensely.  He uses  organic practices in his greenhouses, raised beds, potted plants on benches and also directly in the field! In 2012 he began his quest for USDA Organic Certification and became fully certified through MOSA in 2016.

Landscape architects do more than simply plant shrubs, arrange trees, and run watering systems. Robert creates a complete visual package that works with your architecture's aesthetic and your surrounding biomes.  This takes not only a keen eye for visual detail, but also an expansive knowledge of biology and ecology.

Robert can help you make choices that are eco-friendly and ultimately sustainable.  From bio-engineering to cut flowers, he has extensive experience and knowledge. Robert would love to work with you! 

Robert's core values of environmental responsibility and sustainability are real. He stands behind his work and will provide his customers with information and support. 

Call today for your free consultation!




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Robert C. Boyce

Robert C. Boyce

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The ravinia farmers market

The Ravinia Farmers Market,, is one of the nation's oldest and most venerable farmers markets, located in a beautiful area of Chicago's famous North Shore. It has been a source of healthy local produce since 1978, and it attracts dozens of local growers and thousands of visitors each summer and fall.

Ed Kugler was one of the first merchants to vend at the Ravinia Farmers Market, and has been a constant fixture ever since, eventually becoming Market Manager. Ed still sells organic produce there each week during the growing season, now under the banner of the Organic Food Club.