We purchased our farm in 1993. The land had been farmed conventionally for decades and the two barns had been used to raise feeder pigs. In the early years of our ownership, we started gardening for family and friends. We added some wild areas on the edges of the fields and planted grapes, cherry bushes, fruit trees, asparagus and raspberries. We even raised hogs, at one point having 60 in the barn. In 1999 and 2000, we used the Membership garden model and provided produce for thirteen families. We did all that while still working our full time jobs off the farm to provide our main source of income.
After a 5 year hiatus from gardening, during which time we made some improvements to the property, we decided to focus on market vegetables. In 2006, we established Forest Run Farm, a farm to produce ecological friendly vegetables following organic practices and distribute them locally through CSA shares. Shortly after we were selected to join the Fairshare CSA Coalition. In 2010 we hired our first employees but working members continue to be a major factor on the farm. If you are interested in knowing more about how your food in grown, you could become a working member and reduce the cost of your CSA share.
Over the years we have increased our cropland usage from 1 acre to 7 acres and finished construction of a 4th Hoophouse to extend the season. With the increased awareness and desire of today’s consumer to eat healthy and treat the earth with care, we made the decision to transition our land towards organic certification receiving our first certificate in 2011 with Midwest Organic Services Association (MOSA). Although we are no longer certified, we are still following the standards.
Over the years, as our CSA membership has evolved we look for new host sites for our residential CSA pick up. If your neighborhood is interested in bringing CSA pick up closer to home, please contact us to see what it involves to host a pick up site. We also invite Employers to consider hosting a pick up site for their employees; contact us to set up a meeting or presentation at your work place.