As many of us are being asked to stay home to avoid the spread of coronavirus, small businesses are taking a hit. Our local farms aren’t immune to this, especially as Farmer’s Markets shutter their doors and restaurant partners cut their wholesale orders.
But we can still help our farm neighbors get through this uncertain economic time. We’ve put together a list of resources for how you can support your local farms, both in the Middle Tennessee area and nationwide.
MIDDLE TENNESSEE FARM RESOURCES:
Tennessee Department of Agriculture
If you own a farm in Tennessee, Kacey Troup—a business consultant for the TN Department of Agriculture—is an excellent resource for growing your business by providing education and marketing resources. She works primarily with Agritourism, Christmas Tree Farms, U-Pick Operations, and Equine Trials, so if you are in one of those business areas, we recommend reaching out to her.
One of her main marketing tools is the Pick TN Products campaign that connects people to all of the great things that come from Tennessee’s farms and food businesses. We are lucky to have Kacey and all of the tremendous support personnel in the TN Department of Agriculture!
We reached out to Kacey to ask for her recommendations for supporting local farms. Here’s what she had to say:
“Many local farms and farmers markets are offering alternatives during the COVID-19 outbreak. For example, some are offering local pick up and curb-side options to minimize time spent at the market or farm. The products can be ordered and paid for over the phone, then the order is boxed up and brought out to the customer’s vehicle. Pick Tennessee Products farmers markets are using best practices to minimize the risk of illness and following recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
These tips may help market managers decide when and if to open, and help markets ensure the safety of vendors and customers. Customers should contact a farmers market before visiting to confirm the market is open. It is not believed that COVID-19 is spread through food, making local food a choice consumers can feel confident in.
‘Although our grocery shopping habits have changed with time, farms remain the original source for our food,’ Commissioner of Agriculture Charlie Hatcher, D.V.M. said. ‘If you haven’t shopped at a local farm before, I encourage you to call ahead and ask what’s available. Many are partnering with other farms to provide a greater variety of fresh products than ever before.'”
For everyone else in Tennessee looking to support their local farms, the PickTN website is an easy way to search for all types of Tennessee farms and agriculture businesses. You can search by Ag product, by business, or even by county.
For folks who live in the Nashville or Franklin areas, we’ve listed a few of our favorite local farms in Middle Tennessee that would appreciate your support.
TAYLOR FAMILY FARM
When practicing social distancing, a one-stop-shop might be more your speed. If you’re looking for a place where you can pick up various meats, milk, eggs and bread all in one spot, check out the Taylor Family Farm in Ethridge, TN.
The best part? Taylor Family Farm is all organic, and non-gmo—perfect for a time when eating healthy is definitely a bonus.
At Taylor Family Farm you can find 100% grass-fed beef and lamb, pasture-raised pork and poultry, milk, eggs, fresh baked sourdough, and even honey and molasses.
If heading out to Ethridge isn’t in the schedule for the week, we have good news for you! Stoney Creek Farm is a pickup location option for Taylor Family Farm goods.
Henley Botanicals owner Stephanie Henley offers homegrown herbs, oils and beeswax to create natural skincare and remedies. Who couldn’t use a little calming lavender soap or rosewater facial spray at a time like this?
She will soon be launching her website at www.henleybotanicals.com to allow for online orders and delivery. Take your social distancing seriously and pick up some calming soaps and serums without ever leaving your sofa. In the meantime, you can contact her through Facebook.
For those looking for a good option for Community Supported Agriculture, check out Delvin Farms. Located in eastern Williamson County, Delvin Farms grows organic, non-GMO vegetables nine months out of the year.
Contact Delvin Farms for more information about how you can support them.
Of course, Frothy Monkey isn’t a farm, but that doesn’t mean you can’t stock up on some locally-sourced essentials.
With all of their to-go orders (read: everything on their menu is currently “to-go”!) you can purchase milk from Middle Tennessee’s Hatcher Family Dairy, eggs, or freshly baked bread goods from the Frothy Monkey bakery.
Grab a coffee from them while you’re at it—or pick up a gift card so you can continue to support local businesses once we’re all allowed out and about again.
Check out Frothy’s website for more details about online ordering.
Similarly, local biscuit establishment Biscuit Love is offering take-out and delivery of a pantry-full of locally-sourced ingredients, including:
- Bear Creek Sausage & Beef
- Benton’s Bacon
- Tennessee Real Milk Buttermilk
- Weisenberger Mills Grits & Flour
Avoid the crowded grocery stores, stock up on local staples, and support both local business AND local farms—we like this idea!
STONEY CREEK FARM
And, of course, there’s us!
Stoney Creek Farm is open for business through our online farm shop! Through our online farm shop, you can find resources to help you garden, as well as local retailers that will ship right to you!
If you’re looking for fresh greens for a healthy immune system, check out Sprout Chick in our online store, who delivers fresh microgreens—perfect for a macro salad—to Stoney Creek Farm for pickup every Thursday.
Looking for local honey? We have that available, too. Our honeys include both local and creamed honey from bee master Jim Garrigan, who keeps his bees in Chapel Hill, TN. We also offer muscadine and grape jellies made right here at the farm.
Use this time at home for some reading with our Dirt Rich book, teaching you all that we’ve learned over our 14 years of farm experience. As the spring and summer growing seasons approach, you can implement what you’ve learned from the book immediately!
STONE DUCK FARM
If you’re looking for beef products, check out Stone Duck Farm! Fun fact, the farm is nestled on the banks of both the Stone River and the Duck River which is where it gets its name—just a little known gem for ya!
Raised in the Christiana area near Murfreesboro, the Stone Duck Farm’s beef is really outstanding—we can vouch for that!
The Ayers’ sell their cattle live on the hoof and transport the cow to the processing facility for you. The facility can then process it however you want—steaks, roasts, or hamburgers, etc. Price is based on live weight and the processing facility fee. All of their beef is organic and grass fed.
While Stone Duck Farm doesn’t have beef available until fall, they are still a great farm to add to your list of farms to support.
For those folks outside of Middle Tennessee looking for ways to support their own local farm, take a look at www.pickyourown.org, a site devoted to finding local farms in your area!
Once you find your local farms, we recommend that you reach out to them directly to find out how you can support them during this time.
While the future may seem unknown and unstable right now, we are confident that by supporting local farms and businesses, we will make it through this.