Delicious, local food is the heart of our business with no need for unnecessary ingredients and packaging. It is our mission. To that end we think about everything we do with the need to be locally-minded, simple and responsible.
We treat our animals, the environment, our water resources and the land with respect. We aim to help others to do the same through shared experiences, teaching and exploring new ideas for change.
Change is vital because small farmers are losing land at an alarming rate. According to the American Farmland Trust nearly fifteen hundred acres a day is lost to development.
As responsible farmers we are stewards whose role it is to protect and nurture the land for future generations. Our mission is to restore this farm and with it one small but important link between farming and the food on our tables.
Every year our objective is to deepen our commitment to sustainable practices and carefully sourced, green-minded products.There’s always more that can be done of course. Here is a summary of some areas we have focused on so far.
- Our T shirts for sale in the store are sourced from Alternative Apparel a company focused on sustainable approaches and fair pay for makers.
- We compost and recycling as much as possible on the farm. Quality food scraps are saved for the pigs & chickens. The bulk of their diet is 100% organic containing no animal products.
- Our animals are pasture raised and free to forage on what they find. When available we find treats from around the farm such as hickory nuts and apples.
- We collect, store and burn fallen wood in the kitchen, barn and house, thus saving on fossil fuels. We work with local artists to provide wood for their art.
- The majority of our cleaning materials are made by Sonett. These are biodynamic, organic and in some cases made from foraged materials. Our hand soaps are made from goats milk made by Farmer Meg.
- Nearly all paper products on the farm, including egg boxes, are from recycled sources.
- The new farm buildings include materials reclaimed and repurposed from the old farm:
- roof timbers, barn siding, doors, workbench, hardware and windows in the winter chicken coop
- workbench in the barn shop
- running gear, barn siding, nesting boxes, shutters on the mobile chicken coop
- barn beams, siding, stone sink and some lights in the kitchen and store
- beams, barn flooring for dining table and barn siding in the house
- The farmhouse is made with Structural insulated panels (SIPs), one of the most airtight and well insulated building systems available. As a result the house will use less energy for heating and cooling.
- We worked with NY State Department of Environmental Conservation to ensure careful treatment of the freshwater wetlands around Little Ghent Farm
- Consulted with an environmental and ecological expert to understand how to minimize our impact on the land and natural systems
- We have not used fertilizer in the process of restoring the farm. To our knowledge, in the forty years preceding our ownership, no fertilizers were used either. We prefer the idea that animals fertilize the fields for us.