Archive for December, 2010

Supporting positive change in our communities, donations welcome

Friday, December 31st, 2010

Applecrest Farm

As we round out 2010, my email inbox is inundated with requests from great organizations for end of the year tax deductible donations. I’m sure yours is, too. At Seacoast Eat Local, we haven’t always been the most bold at asking for donations.

 

As we’ve grown as an organization (hosting 11 Winter Farmers’ Market events each season, a growing email/facebook/web network, the annual publication of Seacoast Harvest, up to 8,000 copies this year, co-hosting workshops, events, festivals and serving as an information hub for locally grown food on the seacoast as well as an important resource for farmers) and looking forward to our additional ambitious goals in the next few years (most notably, bringing the ability for farmers’ markets to accept SNAP/food stamps to our area), we’ve been able to accomplish a lot on a pretty bare bones budget.

 

We’ve had organizationally significant and timely support from two organizations that we’d like to thank again here. The New England Grassroots Environment Fund, out of Vermont, gives small grants to grassroots groups. They funded our second year of Seacoast Harvest, allowing us to expand from a small, 4 page brochure to the comprehensive resource it is today. They also currently serve as our fiscal agent, accepting donations and grants on our behalf and making themselves generally available as an incredible resource. The New Hampshire Charitable Foundation Piscataqua Region provided us with a grant that is now allowing us to undergo a strategic planning process as we grow into a more sustainable organization. They have also provided an initial grant for the SNAP project bringing food stamps to farmers’ markets. They have pledged partial funding (50% of the first year) for the next three years.

 

Which brings me to the ask. While we still believe you can get a lot done with not a lot of money and our current budgets reflect an 85% volunteer run organization, the scope of what we are trying to accomplish has grown significantly. If you can give a financial donation, we will put your money to good use. You can donate online or email info@seacoasteatlocal.org to mail a donation.

 

Donate to Seacoast Eat Local

Specify Seacoast Eat Local as your donation destination. New England Grassroots Environment Fund (NEGEF) is Seacoast Eat Local’s 501(c)3 tax deductible fiscal agent

 

This community is incredible, and there are a lot of ways to contribute to positive change in the area of local food and agriculture, from shopping for locally grown foods and forwarding our email newsletters to growing your own garden and sharing some of the harvest with a food pantry. The growth of Seacoast Eat Local is a direct reflection of the growth of interest and actions of all of you – we want to thank you for however you participate in supporting the health of our environment, community, culture and economy through local food and agriculture.

 

Happy New Year from Seacoast Eat Local!

York County Farmers’ Network — Winter Meeting Schedule

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

ycfn_logo_web.jpgFrom the York County Farmers’ Network:

 

Please join us as we restart the York County Farmers’ Network monthly winter breakfast meetings (at a new location). Dates for the winter are as follows:

 

• Tuesday, Jan 4, 8:00 am

 

• Tuesday, Feb. 8, 8:00 am

 

• Tuesday, Mar. 8, 8:00 am

 

Mark your calendar!

 

The meetings have been well attended and a wonderful farmer-to-farmer networking opportunity over the past few years. The purpose of these meetings is to socialize, enjoy breakfast together, informally share ideas and discuss what you want to see happen with the York County Farmers’ Network activities in 2011.

This year we will be meeting and eating at Pat’s Pizza — new breakfast menu! — in Sanford. 

Directions to Pat’s Pizza: Pat’s Pizza is located at 505 Main St. (Route 109) in Sanford, between Marc Motors and Renaissance Cards, approx. across from the Center for Shopping (Shaw’s Plaza) shopping center. Phone: 207-324-7500.

 

For more information, please contact Becky Gowdy at rebecca.gowdy@maine.edu or visit www.ycfn.org.

Survey on winter growing seeks input from vegetable farmers

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Are you growing or storing crops for sale during the winter months?  Are you interested in expanding your farm’s winter harvest? 

Click here to take the online survey, and get connected with a network of winter growers and resources for year-round farming.

This survey will inform a new project to help farmers expand their winter crop production, and improve crop storage structures on their farms. Seacoast Eat Local is proud to be a partner on this project, which will provide much-needed information and resources to the farmers who are working hard to grow a year-round supply of vegetables. The project will also support the development of  winter farmers’ markets in the region.

Northeast SARE has provided funding for a 3-year Research & Education project to expand winter harvest and sales for New England vegetable crops. Partners include University of Massachusetts, University of New Hampshire, Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) and Seacoast Eat Local. We are currently interviewing growers, setting up research trials, organizing winter markets, and planning educational workshops and meetings for farmers. Please complete our survey, and tell us about what you’re doing on your farm, and what issues are important to you.

Stay tuned for details about upcoming workshops and events!

NH Small Family Farm Conference: Equipping Yourself for Farm Ownership

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

NH Small Family Farm Conference: Equipping Yourself for Farm Ownership

Thursday January 6.

The conference will run from 8:45 pm to 3:30 pm at the Holiday Inn, 172 Main St., Concord, NH.

$25
Download a brochure at http://extension.unh.edu/Agric/RMP/RMP_Workshops.htm

The workshop will cover topics such as:
Launching a Farm Venture (Steve Taylor)
Leasing Land to Get a Start (Land for Good)
Business Ownership Options (A rep from Wiggins & Nourie, PA)
Financing Your Purchase (Farm Credit East and Farm Service Agency)
Protecting Your Investment with Insurance (UNHCE and a rep from Robertson Agency)

After lunch Lorraine S. Merrill, NH Commissioner of Agriculture will speak briefly about The State of New Hampshire Agriculture.

The afternoon features two panel discussions:
How We Made the Transition to Farming (Heidi Martin, Higher Ground Alpacas; Dave Stewart, McClary Hill Farm; Scott Cannella, Durocher Farm)
Beginning Farmer Organizations (Kate Kerman, SBFNH; Tiffany Briggs, NH Farm Bureau Young Farmer Program; Samantha Stoddard, Farm Credit East FarmStart Program)

Registration deadline is December 30. Contact Mike Sciabarrasi at 603-862-3234 or
mike.sciabarrasi@unh.edu if you have questions. You can register at
https://www.events.unh.edu/RegistrationForm.pm?event_id=7992

The workshop is sponsored by UNH Cooperative Extension; USDA Risk
Management Agency; NH Department of Agriculture, Markets & Food and
the USDA.

Soil Health and Nitrogen Management Workshops

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Dear Farmers,

Please join us on January 5th or  6th, 2011 for a workshop on Soil Health and Nitrogen Management.  This is a great opportunity to learn about the Cornell Soil Health Test.  Free registration.

January 5th: Merrimack County Conservation District offices, Contact Stacy Luke for registration at (603) 223-6023/ info@merrimackccd.org For more information: www.merrimackccd.org

January 6th: Westmoreland, NH at the Cheshire County Complex, contact Amanda Costello for registration at 603-756-2988 ext.116/ amanda.costello@nh.nacdnet.net. For more information: www.cheshireconservation.org

Soil Health & Nitrogen Management Workshop with Dr. Bianca Moebius-Clune from the Cornell Soil Health Team
Do you depend on the health of your soil?  The Cornell Soil Health Test (CSHT) takes soil testing a step further with an integrated approach that considers the physical, biological and chemical properties of a soil. The money, effort, and time that you have placed into a good fertilizer can be lost or limited due to other factors within the soil!   This workshop will introduce the Cornell comprehensive soil health test and how to use it for management.  The afternoon session will focus on how to manage Nitrogen needs based on actual local weather and soil conditions to reduce fertilizer loss, save money and increase crop production.

(Identical program each day)

Morning Session 9:30 – 12:00
Introduction to Soil Health and interpreting Soil Health Results with Dr. Moebius-Clune of the Cornell Soil Health Lab

12:00-1:30  Lunch and hands on discussion, interpretation and soil management workshop

1:30- 3:00  Adaptive nitrogen management introduction and hands on workshop.  Learn how to use the tool for appropriate rates (for anyone who buys nitrogen fertilizer, this is especially important!)

Come to morning or afternoon sessions or both – Free Registration! Bring  a brown bag lunch or we can order in.

Grass Fed Beef from Pinewood Yankee Farm available

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

Tina Sawtelle of Pinewoods Yankee Farm writes,

We have our freezer full again of own grass fed beef ready for cooks of the new year! Ground and stew in 1 lbers, steaks and roasts, and soup bones for stock. People can contact me through our facebook Pinewoods Yankee Farm, email esawtelles@aol.com, or call (603) 659-8106. I deliver in our local Lee, Durham, Madbury, Newmarket area or pickup at the farm in Lee is simple.

Tina Fottler Sawtelle
Pinewoods Yankee Farm, Lee

Celebrating Local Food at the Holiday Farmers’ Market

Monday, December 20th, 2010

xmas3.jpg

Thank-you to all who came and filled the Holiday Farmers’ Market at the Wentworth Greenhouses with such abundant good cheer. Every time you buy directly from local farmers, fisherpeople, and food producers, you help support the availability of safe, healthy and, most of all, delicious local food. Here’s just a glimpse of the wonderful variety to be found here in our corner of New England — click here for slideshow >

 

Happy holidays, and see you at the next Winter Farmers’ Market in Exeter, January 8th!

 

 

 

 

 

Holiday Specials from Lasting Legacy Farm

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

Lasting Legacy Farm in Barrington sends word of their Holiday Specials on ham and lobster for next week:

 

Once again we are offering our customers holiday hams for your Christmas dinner!

 

The weights will be from 8–10# at $5.25 a pound.

 

Available for pick up Thursday, December 23, 2010 from 10 am to 6 pm.

 

Send an email wberry@llfarm.net to order your size as soon as you can

because they are limited!

 

 ______________

 

How about fresh caught wild lobsters for Christmas Eve dinner

for a true New England Celebration!

 Fresh lobsters brought in to Lasting Legacy Farm

from our favorite fishermen (and women) — Eastman’s Fish!

 

2+# Select Lobsters to be picked up at our farm

Thursday December 23rd in time for your holiday festivities.

At $4# this is a great way to bring in some local flavor to your festivities.

They will be delivered to the farm for a convenient pick-up for our customers.

So email to wberry@llfarm.net your order of how many lobsters you would like —

we will notify everyone of pick up time!

 

Happy Holidays from Lasting Legacy Farm!

 

For more information, please visit www.llfarm.net >

MOOMilk and Wayside to Provide Milk to Those in Need

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

waysidebanner.gif‘Tis the season for sharing — MOOMilk and Wayside Food Programs have teamed up to provide fresh, organic Maine milk to those who otherwise could not afford it:

 

MOOMilk and Wayside Food Programs partner to provide organic milk

 

All of us who work hard every day to bring you Maine’s Own Organic Milk (our farmers, our business partners, and our cows) want to thank you for your support and encouragement during the first year of our company. You have purchased our milk, offered your comments and criticism, and helped spread the word that Maine now has its own brand of pastuerized organic milk; milk that is produced, transported, processed and distributed by Maine family businesses. We are grateful and we thank you.

 

The holiday season seems an appropriate time to introduced you to our newest partner, Wayside Food Programs. Wayside is a local, Portland-based organization that runs food kitchens and supplies food to shelters, food pantries and other social service agencies in the Southern Maine area. Now you can help our MOOMilk farmers sell more milk and at the same time help Wayside bring pure Maine organic milk to Maine people who otherwise could not afford it. You can learn more about Wayside by clicking HERE.

 

Wayside receives much of its food through donations from restaurants, retailers and food producers, but on occasion it still needs to purchase food to meet the needs of its clients. The biggest food expense it has is fresh milk. You can help Wayside cut down on that expense by purchasing MOOMilk, which we will deliver on your behalf to Wayside.

 

The program works like this.

You purchase whatever amount of milk you wish directly from MOOMilk, at less than retail prices. MOOmilk will send you a receipt for the milk you purchased, and will then turn the milk directly over to Wayside on your behalf. Wayside will then send you a receipt for the donation of the milk, which you may use to claim a deduction on your federal income tax if you wish. (Wayside is a 501(c)3 organization, so donations of food or money to it are tax deductible).

 

The milk you buy will be freshly produced milk, always with more than a full week of freshness date on it, and is kept properly stored in the Oakhurst Dairy distribution center in Portland until Wayside picks it up. Wayside will pick up this donated milk twice a week and distribute it immediately throughout southern Maine.

 

You can purchase as much milk as you wish under this program, using either the online buttons or by check using the order form you can download HERE. Or you may place an order over the phone by calling David Bright, MOOMilk’s Secretary and Deputy Treasurer, at 207-234-4226.

 

Your donation to this program will not only help Wayside Kitchen feed the hungry, it will help our MOOMilk farms by increasing the market for their milk.

 

Thank you for your support of Wayside Kitchen and of the Maine farm families who make up Maine’s Own Organic Milk Company.

 

For more information about the program and how to donate, please visit www.moomilkco.com.

Holiday Farmers’ Market Countdown!

Friday, December 17th, 2010

xmas2.jpgWe are as busy as Santa’s elves, getting ready for the Holiday Farmers’ Market this Saturday, December 18, at the Wentworth Greenhouses in Rollinsford. With 55+ vendors signed up, it promises to be our largest market to date, bringing with it an amazing array of local food. Farmers will be offering a wide selection of produce alongside an incredible variety of meat — chicken, duck, goose, and turkey; goat, lamb, pork and beef; also rabbit, venison, and elk! Here’s a map >

 

Extra parking for this Saturday — Salmon Falls Stoneware has made additional parking available to market customers. They’re just around the corner from the Wentworth Greenhouses at 75 Oak Street in Dover, and a shuttle will be running from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. (a quick 2-minute ride). Thanks to 45 Market Street Bakery and Salmon Falls Stoneware for making this happen! Map for parking at Salmon Falls Stoneware >

 

Come stay the day — The market will be open from 10 am to 2 pm. Whether you come early or later in the day, there’ll be plenty to choose from. Also, Poor Howard Stilth will be filling the greenhouse with his festive music, there’ll be a craft table to visit with the kids, and a number of vendors offering delicious ready-to-eat or prepared food made from local ingredients. Stay and have a light snack or a hot lunch, and enjoy the day with us.

 

Market specials — Keep up-to-date with vendors, new products, and specials at the market by following us at Facebook or Twitter. Some recent postings include:

 

- Eastman’s Fish Market “will be offering a few specials at the Holiday Farmers’ Market this Saturday at Wentworth Greenhouses, including select lobsters for $4.00/lb, and between 12–2 p.m. a $2 discount off your purchase of $12 or more if you bring a recipe with you!”

 

- Kellie Brook Farm: “We have Christmas turkeys, Holiday Roasts: Bone in Loin Roasts, Fresh Shoulder and Pork Butt, Tenderloins: Veal and Pork. We have Large Roaster Chickens and plenty of Extra Large & Jumbo Eggs available & Chicken Liver Pate for your Christmas Parties.”

 

- New Roots Farm: “We will be offering our garlic scape pesto, created in conjunction with the Harvesting Hermit, at Rollinsford this weekend. The pesto is a great flashback to summer, but is also a wonderful complement to our heritage breed roasting chickens, pork chops and legs of lamb.”

 

Deck the Halls — Wentworth Greenhouses still has nice selection of custom decorated wreaths, festive bows, centerpieces and more for holiday decorating; a Live Green Sale will feature special pricing on undecorated wreaths, garlands, bunched greens and cut trees. For other holiday gift choices, Wentworth Greenhouses also hosts select craft artisans in the glass greenhouse on market dates (the greenhouse on the left as you enter). Be sure to visit the glass greenhouse for locally produced goods including leatherwork, woodwork, pottery and more. For more information, please visit www.wentworthgreenhouses.com.

Sharing the bounty — The Rollinsford Police Benevolent Association will again be on hand to collect food donations from consumers and vendors for their Christmas baskets. You can purchase foods at the market to donate — such as carrots, onions, potatoes, winter squash, maple syrup and honey — and Meadow’s Mirth Farm is offering a 10% discount on purchases intended for donation. Chief Robert Ducharme wrote to thank you for all your generous donations at the market on November 20th:

 

On behalf of the members of the Rollinsford Police Benevolent Association, please accept my sincere appreciation to all the vendors and donors who provided either fresh food or cash donations for our Annual Holiday Food Basket Program at the November farmers’ market at Wentworth Greenhouses.

 

The donation of food was overwhelming. We were able to provide plenty of fresh vegetables for our food baskets and deliver the surplus to the homeless shelter in Dover, as well as the food pantries in Somersworth and Rochester. Your kind and generous donations touched so many families in several communities who have been hurt by the current economy.

 

The RPBA has been providing full Thanksgiving and Christmas food baskets to the less fortunate for the last 25 years. The RPBA is a non-profit organization and is registered as such with the IRS and NH Attorney General’s Office.

 

Again, many thanks to you and for all that you do to help those who are not as fortunate. Best wishes to you and yours for a safe and happy holiday season.

 

— Chief Robert Ducharme, Rollinsford Police Department

 

Time to stock up — Our next Winter Farmers’ Market won’t be for another three weeks, January 8th in Exeter. Much of the produce found at the Winter Farmers’ Market stores well refrigerated, while most of the meat comes already frozen. Farm-fresh eggs will keep up to 5 weeks. Remember to stock up!

 

Volunteer — We’re looking for volunteers to help set up, provide information during the market, or clean up afterward. Come early to help unload and you’ll get a sneak peek at the goods before the market opens! Email foodguide@seacoasteatlocal.org if you would like to volunteer.

 

For more information, including a list of participating vendors, please visit www.seacoasteatlocal.org.