Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Maintenance Gleaning for All, by Celia Hurvitt

A few weeks ago while thinning beets at Jon Hyk’s garden, I was introduced to the term “maintenance gleaning.” While supporting the farmer’s need to create more space for a row of beets to grow, we thinned out the smaller plants, harvesting beet greens for the local Bucksport Community Concerns Food Pantry. 
The Gleaning room filled with beet greens from our day at Jon Hyk’s garden. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The Gleaning Intern Returned, by Celia Hurvitt

            Over the past couple weeks of emerging summer, I have been out gleaning at many distinct farms around Hancock County. From John Hyk’s rows of spinach at his market garden in Prospect, to Runwater Farm’s plot of deer tongue lettuce, Four Season Farm and Beech Hill Farm greenhouses, each of the farms we have gleaned at has a particular nuance that I have had the joy of exploring.
It was only last June that I went out gleaning for the first time. At Pat and Mike’s Garden, in Ellsworth, we were greeted by a slobbery sweet dog and a cheerful invitation from its owner: “Take that whole row of lettuce,” and “do you need to use the hose? Would you like anything to snack on?” Katie and I spent a few hours amongst their beds, getting our knees covered with dirt and salvaging the seconds greens not fit to be sold. Once we finished  filling our yellow crates to the brim with fresh heads of lettuce we reluctantly left, lingering to pat the dog on the head and hoping we could come back soon.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Gleaning and FarmDrop Updates

Last month we held a lively community launch reception for FarmDrop.org farmers, customers and partners at Fairwinds Florist downtown Blue Hill. A beautiful assortment of delicious plates accompanied the festivities, including Quill's End Summer Sausage, Yknot Lamb Balls dipped in Goat's Milk Yogurt, Blue Hill Blondes Beef Liver Pate, Backstage Farm Kvas and Firestarter Kimchi, Four Season Farm Radish and Kale dipped in olive oil and sea salt, and sparkling grape juice made from gleaned grapes.

Customers who were picking up their FarmDrop order could spend a minute tasting some of the products available on FarmDrop.org and talking to farmers they don't usually get to interact with given the online nature of our marketplace. As we grow to include more farmers and customers our hope is that we can continue to hold occasional Meet-and-greet events like this to strengthen the FarnDrop community, discuss and new developments regarding the online platform, and continue to work together to build vibrant local food communities. This will be our third week open and we have hosted 30 online shoppers so far with more orders coming in every day. All proceeds go towards supporting the FarmDrop operations and the ongoing work of partners Healthy Acadia and Healthy Peninsula to get good food to all community members.

Guests at the FarmDrop Community Launch: includes Tina Allen(front left) of the Blue Hill Chamber of Commerce, Representative Ralph Chapman (front middle), and Janet Lewis (front right) of partner organization Healthy Peninsula and the Magic Food Bus.

To get involved in gleaning projects on farms and in your community, to share the bounty of the local harvest, get in touch with us at hannah@healthyacadia.org and visit our facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/thegleaningintiative/ or our website: http://www.healthyacadia.org/initiatives/gleaning.html 

Thank You!

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Blue Hill Blondes - A FarmDrop.org Farmer Story

Blue Hill Blondes John and Betty Tyler sell over 1000lbs of grass-fed USDA beef every year, to restaurants and individuals in Blue Hill, and through www.FarmDrop.org These farmers choose to serve smaller markets in order to maintain a one cow per acre quality space ratio. The most important part of their work is keeping the hay dry, the grass healthy and the cows happy.