When Babycakes opened 26 years ago, it operated as primarily a coffee shop that served muffins. Over time, they’ve added a lunch menu, specialty desserts and have begun catering.

One of the aspects that makes their lunch menu unique is many of the ingredients are sourced from local farmers and growers. The partnerships with local suppliers started when the farmers approached Babycakes about using their produce.

Owner Kim Danielson said, “It’s evolved to such a point where they are now asking us, ‘What do you want? We’ll grow it for you.’ It’s been amazing. We get the most spectacular produce and it’s all locally grown and when we find that we get something different, we try to come up with a menu or an item that can feature that fabulous produce.”

Danielson said she believes the use of local produce in menu items will expand over time.

“It’s a win-win for everybody, for the customer, for us, for the farmer,” Danielson said. “They get paid right away by us. There’s no middle person, there are no transportation problems. It’s just a wonderful way to do business.”

Babycakes sources much of its produce from Seeds & Spores Family Farm, the MSU Extension North Farm and Jeff Heidtman. The eggs come from Shady Grove Farm in Gwinn.

And while most of the business’ local items are produce-related, they have sourced local meats before and plan to do so regularly again.