"From the first ping of the sealing lid
Nikki was in love."
The seeds of what would become Malley Farms Small Batch Canning were sown in 2002, when founder Nikki Malley began exploring small-batch canning under the careful instruction of her mother in law, Judy who, herself, learned the craft from her mother on their Abingdon, Illinois farm as part of the family’s annual food preservation activities.
Bob Malley and Nikki Malley, Malley Farms, Galesburg, Illinois
From hobby canning to the establishment of a small cottage food business selling at the Galesburg Farmers Market in 2016, Nikki’s small batch canning quickly grew into a successful small enterprise.
During the 6 years operating as a cottage food business, Nikki developed a unique product line and refined a brand identity that found overwhelming support from
local customers, prompting her to imagine what possibilities existed if the business were able to expand in production scale and permanent retail structure.
Nikki was raised by small business owners Terry and Susan Whittaker who owned and managed a successful independent bookstore — Viewpoint Books in Columbus, Indiana — until their retirement in 2016.
With the establishment of Malley Farms Small Batch Canning and Specialty Foods brick and mortar retail store and commercial production kitchen in Galesburg’s Seminary Street Historic Downtown District in 2023, her love of food and passion for independent retail merged, as the realization of a years-long dream in the making.
Before making the transition from summer farmers markets to full-time production and a brick and mortar retail store, Nikki was an Associate Professor of Music at Knox College from 2003 to 2022, holding positions including Director of Jazz Studies and Chair of the Department of Music. Nikki holds a PhD in Musicology from the University of Iowa and continues to perform as a professional jazz vibraphonist in the central Illinois community. A big fan of second chapters and the surprising journeys, Nikki finds inspiration for her culinary explorations in the improvisatory practices of jazz, and you can count on hearing some great music when you visit the store.
Nikki Malley, Founder
Malley Farms is driven by the core values of integrity, innovation, and community.
The integrity of our products is of the highest priority, and is represented in our use of all-natural ingredients at all times.
We strive for culinary innovation in the development of adventurous yet unpretentious flavors that invite our customers to be creative in their own cooking and entertaining.
Most importantly, we view our business as a community-based enterprise. Our success relies on the support of the incredible Galesburg and Central Illinois communities within which we operate, but more importantly, we believe deeply in the commitment that our small local business has to the community as a participant in local events, as a supporter of local nonprofits, and as a representative of the Galesburg community.