Our Certified Organic farm is at the heart of everything we do. It’s the source of inspiration during our workdays, it shows up on the shelves and in the deli case when the Farm Market opens, and it offers itself to our community. The farm’s close proximity to Seattle’s urban core creates a unique opportunity to learn about the significance of farmland preservation efforts. And it’s there when we go home to prepare a hearty meal at the end of the workday. Our work revolves around the food we grow, and we feel extremely fortunate and privileged to share it with you. Our farm represents how important efforts to introduce resilience can also be places where your food is simply grown.
What's Happening on the Farm?
With cooler temperatures in the nights, our summer crops will be slowly slowing production. The cool mornings make for wonderful bounties of fresh leafy greens; komatsuna, mizuna, kale, collards, lettuce, and more. Cover crops are being sown in preparation for the anticipated deluge that fall and winter bring to the PNW.
We completed our Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) audit with a passing score. This means that our customers can be assured that our farm is practicing safe harvest and packing. It also means that we meet the national standards for the Food Safety Modernization Act. Moving forward, institutions may require this certification from any farm they purchase from. This is good news for everyone! Traceability and transparency for food growing, harvesting and transportation assures that the farm, handlers, processors, and distributors can be held accountable for their portion of the industry.
The hens are laying. Though we are not selling the eggs, they have been actively adding organic matter to future areas for growing and destroying the flies that enter into their space. They are feeding on rye seed, bugs, vetch, weeds, any culled plant material, and a small amount of pellet. The hawks are back out flying around during the day times, too. The two roosters keep our small flock of six hens safe from predators by calling them to sheltered areas.
Where Does the Food Go?
The lion’s share of the produce we harvest from the 21 Acres Farm is sold through the Farm Market. Some of the food goes to our kitchen to be used as ingredients for our culinary classes or for delicious meals for events. Much of it is used for food-to-go offered in our seasonal deli in the Farm Market. During the summer, the kitchen staff preserves berries, tomatoes, cucumbers, and other warm season crops to enjoy during the winter. Produce is also distributed a number of ways in our community. Some is donated each week to a local organization that distributes food to families in need. We sell some of the harvest produce through Farmstand Local Foods to local restaurants and businesses. We’re also happy to sell bulk produce to home canners who pre-order to make sure they have the quantities and varieties they need.