Co-op Sauce began as Co-op Image, a fundraising effort started by Wilmette, Illinois, native Mike Bancroft, “the Sauce Boss,” for inner-city youth activities (Mike is also the proprietor/owner of Sauce & Bread Kitchen in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood). To help sustain the youth programs, in 2003 Mike and the kids got together to create and sell hot sauce. Now Co-op Sauce, the popular venture still crafts original-recipe hot sauce in small batches with hand-picked ingredients from small Midwestern family farms. All products are available in five-ounce retail bottles and foodservice gallons. Co-op Sauce also soon will feature vinegar, mustards and kimski sauce.