Farm

Producer Spotlight: Milkweed Farm

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At Food Connects, we’re fortunate to work with both small-scale and large-scale producers. This allows us to not only have diversity in our products, but also in the producers we support. One farm we are proud to support is Milkweed Farm.

Jonah Mossberg owns and operates Milkweed Farm, a diversified vegetable and flower farm in Guilford, Vermont. Milkweed Farm is also a queer owned and operated business—which is core to how Jonah farms and how his farm business engages with the community. He is committed to using low and no-till practices on the farm both as a way to support soil biology and health and to reduce the farm's carbon footprint.

Jonah grows over 40 varieties of vegetables on the farm. He produces value-added fermented vegetables for sale at local farmers’ markets such as kimchi and loves growing ingredients for those—“nothing makes me happier than a good patch of Napa Cabbage and Daikon radish.” He is also an aspiring flower farmer and love growing blooms—the queen red lime Zinnia and broom corn are some of his favorites.

For Jonah farming is about more than just growing food. Agriculture is a way to engage with the people in his direct community.

“Food and farming are lenses that we can all put on to look at our world and to see how we might make things a little better. As a farmer, I choose to use my farm as a way to collaborate with other local businesses as a way to keep our local economy strong. Keeping food that I grow in my community also means that I get to feed people that I know, and feed them well. I wouldn't have it any other way.”

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The farm also donates to local food shelves regularly, as well as local organizations working across many social justice issues, hosts educational groups, and stands strongly in solidarity with justice based movements across Vermont.

“Selling through the Food Connects Food Hub allows my farm to connect with local businesses that I otherwise wouldn't have access to. As a new farmer, this has been elemental in growing my business. Because Food Connects takes care of the marketing, invoicing, and transportation of my products I get to spend more time doing what I love, growing food, and less time out of the field finding buyers for my food. It is a win-win."

Milkweed Farm has multiple CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) options, including a growing Fermentation CSA where members get value-added fermented goods. You can also purchase Jonah’s products at the Saturday Brattleboro Farmers’ Market or the Sunday Putney Farmer's’ Market.

Want to lend a hand to Milkweed Farm? Currently Jonah farms on leased land and is searching for a permanent land base for his farm operation in Windham County—ideally 3-5 acres (or more!) of flat, farmable ground, with good southerly exposure and water access. Outbuildings and a house are a bonus. If you know of any land or information that could help Jonah, please send him an e-mail!

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Producer Spotlight: Harlow Farm

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One of our strongest partnerships is with Harlow Farm located in Westminster, Vermont. Harlow Farm is a family owned operation, owned by the Harlow family since 1917. Paul Harlow owns Harlow Farm while his brother Dan owns Harlow Farmstand. Food Connects work closely with Evan Harlow, Paul’s son, and Cory Walker who manage the day-to-day operations of the farm.

Harlow Farms became certified organic in 1985. Paul recognized the benefits of organic farming early in the movement. They are now the largest organic vegetable operation in Vermont. They grow a wide variety of vegetables including lettuce, kales, collards, cabbage, broccoli, chard, sweet corn, carrots, beets, parsnips, turnips, rutabaga, and winter squash. Evan’s favorite product they grow is kale because the plant continues to grow new leaves throughout the season and they get many harvests from each planting.

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They distribute their produce locally through Food Connects along with other distributors but also sell to grocery store chains like Whole Foods and Price Chopper. In the summer it’s too hot to grow greens in places like Kentucky, Georgia, and Florida, so they ship produce to those regions through a broker. But selling locally is most important to them. They see it as an important part of strengthening their community.


“We like to provide quality produce to the people who live near us. Food Connects has been a valuable partner since we started working with them,” said Evan. In fact, Harlow Farm is a founding member of the Food Connects Food Hub. “It is useful for us to sell to many smaller outlets without having to deal with them all directly.”

Want to visit Harlow farm? Join them on July 24 for a pizza social in conjunction with NOFA-VT. They event is from 5:30 to 7:30 pm and all are welcome! You can RSVP to the event here. Harlow Farm is a member of NOFA-VT and planted an apple try this season as part of an orchard to honor former executive director Enid Wonnocott.  



Producer Spotlight: AlpineGlo Farm

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AlpineGlo Farm, owned and operated by the Ware Family, is a small, first generation family farm located in Westminster, VT. Their primary focus is inside the farmstead goat dairy where they produce a full line of fresh, soft goat cheeses. Every step along the production line, from farming to the final cheese making process, is completed on the farm—a true labor of love.

What’s unique is that Rachel runs the farm primarily on her own. There are not very many "one woman shows" out there—and she does it all! This includes everything from breeding, birthing, bottle feeding, raising, and retiring the goats on the farm, as well as all the daily aspects of running a farm including cleaning, milking, maintenance, veterinary care—you name it!

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The farm is very small, which is also unique in the dairy world. By staying small Rachel is able to focus on the animals with great detail and attention, and it stays intimate this way. Each animal is an integral part of the whole farm—they are considered part of the family. In fact, each year they name the baby goats with a different letter of the alphabet. They also try to follow individual name lines—all of Daisy's babies are named flower names and Clementine's baby this year was named Grapefruit!

Twice a week fresh cheese is made using the goats' milk, produced solely from their own goats. All of the cheese is handcrafted and made in small batches. Small batches and minimal processing allow them to produce a higher quality cheese than mass-produced products.

It is very important to them that food is enjoyed where it is produced. There is no need for food to travel hundreds, or even thousands, of miles when it can be sourced right here. Selling locally supports the local economy and makes you feel part of the community. Rachel wants customers to know her, her animals, and where their food comes from.