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The fall colours are here, the gardens are slowing down and the summer markets are finishing.  But there are still LOTS of great winter vegetables to be harvested and kept for the colder months ahead!  Sign up today for a Winter CSA share and some of them will be yours to enjoy!!

For more information CLICK HERE – you’ll find all the details regarding share contents, cost and our online sign-up form.  Tell all of your (local) friends!

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Chicken Tractors keep birds safe while giving them access to fresh grass every day!

We now have this season’s pasture-raised chickens for sale.  Over the past several years, we have enjoyed raising chickens, given that they are a great complement to a mixed farm.  It has been amazing to see how much the chickens improve the pasture by adding their own unique “fertilizer”!

We have received lots of positive feedback from our chicken customers over the past four years. You really can taste the difference of a pasture-raised, organic chicken.  The breed of chickens we are raising are White Rock.   We have been feeding the chickens Certified Organic, non-GMO feed, along with their forage of grass, clovers, alfalfa and insects.

WHAT IS “PASTURE-RAISED”?

Pasture-raised means that, after a 4-week period in a brooder, our chickens live outside, on grass, all the time.  They are raised in move-able coops called chicken tractors, to protect them from predators, and to allow them to have access to a new patch of fresh pasture every day.  Providing pasture for chickens produces meat with higher amounts of omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants.  For more information about the health benefits of eating pasture-raised chicken, CLICK HERE.

WHY DO WE FEED ORGANIC GRAIN?

Pasture is not enough to sustain a chicken.  We also feed them grain.  We believe that feeding Organic feed to our chickens offers the chickens better nutrition and therefore produces better quality meat.  We also believe in supporting the work of Organic grain farmers.  This decision to feed a Certified Organic grain mix does come with a price.  Our feed costs are twice as high as our next best option, non-GMO feed (from our supplier: 1 bag non-GMO = $13.85 vs. 1 bag Organic = $26.34)

HOW TO BUY OUR PASTURE-RAISED CHICKEN

We are selling whole chickens that will come frozen and vacuum-sealed, with giblets (heart, liver, neck) included inside the bird.  We are estimating that chickens will range in size between 5 – 9 lb. The price for chicken is $5.50 / lb.

When you place your order, please indicate your preference:

  • Smaller birds: approx. 5 – 7 lb chickens
  • Larger birds: approx. 7 – 9 lb chickens

New This Year: For an additional $2.00 per chicken, you have the option of having the chicken cut in half lengthwise (called a split roast chicken, NOT butterflied).  On your order, please indicate how many chickens you would like to have cut in half (ie. 2 chickens = 4 halves).

We will do our best to accommodate size preferences IF WE CAN depending on the orders that we receive and the sizes of our chickens.  There is no minimum or limit to the number of chickens that you can order.  Orders will be taken on a first-come-first-served basis.  Please place your order by replying to this email and providing the information listed below.  In the past, we have sold out in less than a week, so to avoid disappointment, don’t delay in placing your order.

YOUR ORDER INFORMATION:

Name:

Phone Number:

Email:

Number of Chickens (whole):

Number of Chickens (cut in half – $2 extra per bird):

Size Preference (Smaller / Larger): 

Optional – 

– Chicken feet $5 / bag of 10 feet (very nutritious added to  chicken broth)

The pick-up date for chicken will be Monday October 23rd (1:00 – 7:00pm) on the farm.

We will send you more specific details closer to the pick-up date regarding time and logistics to those who order chickens.  It is important to us that you can make it on the specified day as the chickens will be frozen and our freezer space is limited.  If you cannot make it, please consider sending someone in your place or please let us know well in advance.

Please be in touch if you have any questions. fiddlefootfarm@gmail.com

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We are delighted to be one of the stops on this year’s Dufferin Farm Tour – Saturday September 30th!  Each year, farms in our county open their “gates” to visitors looking for a fun farm-based experience.  Come and learn about what we do, how we do it and where exactly the food is being grown!

Some info from the Dufferin Farm Tour website:

Six farms in north-east Dufferin will open their doors to visitors. This years’ hosts include farms specializing in community supported agriculture, potatoes (organic, specialty and table), highland cattle (beef), holstein cattle (dairy), fruits and vegetables and native plants.
The tour is a self-guided tour and is open to the public. The host farms offer a glimpse of the diversity of agriculture in the area.
There will be many animals to see, farm-related activities, commodity displays, local produce to purchase. You will end your day with an appreciation for local farming and the commitment of the farm families.
 
Admission is a non-perishable food donation or cash for the Local Food Bank.
Tips for a successful farm tour experience:
– Dress appropriately, tour goes shine or rain.
– Bring cash and a cooler for on farm produce purchases
– Plan your route (there is a recommended route on the passport map)
– There is lots to see and do – give yourself lots of time if you want to visit every farm.
You are encouraged to eat local, eat healthy and support farmers.
 
Tour passports are made available ONE WEEK prior to the tour. They can be downloaded online or picked up in person at Orangeville Visitor Information or Dufferin County Museum & Archives. Admission is a non-perishable food donation or cash for Local Food Banks.

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We are now accepting registration for our 2017 CSA Memberships.

For those who are interested in eating locally grown produce at its best, fresh and in season, consider becoming a CSA member.

If you are interested in finding out more about our CSA offering, please review the material listed on our CSA Sign Up Page. We have also put together a list of FAQs to help answer some common questions. If, after reviewing the information provided, you have any further questions, please be in touch – fiddlefootfarm@gmail.com

Here are some comments from our CSA Members about their CSA experience with us:
I love participating in the Fiddle Foot Farm CSA. It is a comfort to know the origins of the food that we place on our table. I especially appreciate the weekly emails with the the description of the various offerings that we will be receiving, along with suggestions for how to enjoy them. I look forward to the trip to the farm each week for the pickup and have always felt welcome to look around and see how things are growing! Leslie (CSA Member)
Well done Fiddlefoot! Your produce is always clean, varied and in pristine condition. We have been members for many years and have always been impressed with their variety. Well done. David and Sylvia (CSA Members)
I have really enjoyed all the organic vegetables since joining the Fiddle Foot Farm CSA. They are so fresh and the colours are richer and deeper than you find in the stores. I enjoy trying new vegetables and Fiddle Foot Farm provides a nice variety that raises the bar at the dinner table.  Such friendly and informative service from a trusted source! – Linda (CSA Member)
We thoroughly enjoyed our first year with Fiddle Foot Farm CSA. It was exciting to base our meals around what veggies we were getting each week and to get creative with vegetables we were unfamiliar with. We plan to sign up again and again. – Kristen and Kipp (CSA Members)
We take great pleasure in enjoying all the fresh flavours from Fiddle Foot Farm and have for three seasons so far. We consider ourselves very lucky to have such conscientious farmers nearby. – CSA Member

HELP US GROW – JOIN OUR CSA!

The CSA model is a mutually beneficial arrangement between producers and consumers. It allows people to become members of a farm and in so doing, engage in their agricultural community. After growing vegetables in partnership with CSA members for 8 years, we recognize the importance of this arrangement both financially and socially in building a sustainable and local agriculture. It is unlikely that we would be farming today if it were not for the Community Supported Agriculture model.

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It feels like not too long ago that we were bringing in the season’s last harvests and putting things away for winter. Now we are blanketed in snow and enjoying the holiday season!

Here are some highlights from 2016 at Fiddle Foot Farm…

Graham and Brad at Creemore Farmer's Market

Graham and Brad at Creemore Farmer’s Market

Once again, we were blessed with a great team on the farm this season. Year after year, we are so honoured when bright, capable young people choose to work with us on the farm. They each bring their own strengths and energies into the mix, which makes every season feel new and alive.

This year, Brad and Adam, two fellas who had worked with us in past years came back to get another dose of Fiddle Foot fun. This was particularly gratifying, to see them able to take on new aspects of the farm work and continue to learn throughout the season.

Tamara hauling an impressive load of garlic!

Tamara hauling an impressive load of garlic!

Sarah admiring tomato varieties

Sarah admiring tomato varieties

Tamara and Sarah joined the farm team this season and we are so grateful for their dedication, enthusiasm and appreciation of good food – being grown and eaten!! Not only did they work hard in the fields, they each also spent regular time with our 2-year-old son, which we (and he!) appreciated!

Rounding out the team were Julie Mae and TJ, who helped on harvest days and market days respectively. In the midst of a busy and challenging season, there is nothing quite like a fresh face and energy to give you the boost you need!

Reflecting back on the season, it will obviously be the drought that will remain in our minds this year.  We have never experienced a summer like this one and are once again humbled by nature.  We literally did not receive a drop of rain for 8 weeks. We worked harder than ever to keep crops surviving but then also saw that, as long as we could provide some water, the heat and sun helped to produce some bountiful crops.  We were amazed by the resilience of some plants and their productive capacity in less than ideal conditions! With sufficient irrigation capacity, a season like this one is in some ways better than a cool and wet season.  Having said that, you won’t hear us wishing for another one like this summer!

Irrigating fall carrots

Irrigating carrots

 

When the rains returned in late August, it was an incredible feeling to see seeds germinating without our having irrigated them, or to see the rebounding green grasses in our pastures. These rains came just in time for our fall/winter crops, for which we were incredibly grateful!

A highlight of the end of the season was to finally build our second moveable hoop-house in the field. Those who have worked with us over the past 3-4 years will smile when they hear that this job (which remained on the to-do list each season) is now finally done! It was thanks to the warm fall and having the right people in the right place at the right time! This hoop-house will increase our capacity for winter salad greens, early spring crops (carrots, green onions, greens, etc.) and heat-lovers (tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers) in the summertime – it will be well worth the wait!

Amy and Owen preparing the new herb garden.

Amy and Owen preparing the new herb garden.

Children bring magic and energy to the farm. 2016 saw more children on the farm than ever before. We had visiting family and friends throughout the season not to mention Owen, our resident toddler on the farm (who we all agree has a pretty great gig!). Children help us all to see the wonders of nature and appreciate them as we walk more slowly and with less (or perhaps just different) purpose around the farm!

From our farm to your homes and families, we send warm wishes for a healthy and peaceful year ahead. We look forward to what will grow in 2017!

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We are packing our final Summer CSA shares this week, reflecting on the season that is soon wrapping up.  We are happy to announce that our Winter CSA is looking great for this coming year – a greater selection than ever of high-quality, organic, locally grown vegetables for you to enjoy throughout the winter!

Join us on this culinary adventure and make your winter taste delicious!

SIGN-UP TODAY – CLICK HERE!

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piggies

Over the past five years, we have enjoyed raising pigs on pasture on our farm.  They are a great complement to a vegetable farm, always happy to receive any vegetables we have to spare!  This year, their pasture was in a section of the farm along a fence-line under the trees and included a large area of open field.  We really enjoy having them here, getting to see them eat pasture, roll and lay in puddles or in the sun, root about for insects, chase each other around, and enjoy vegetables from the garden.

The pigs we raised this year are different from the breed we have raised in the past.  They are a Berkshire / Tamworth / Wild Boar cross.  Along with grass, insects, and vegetables, we have been feeding the pigs Certified Organic, non-GMO feed from Jones Feed Mill.

HOW CAN YOU BUY OUR DELICIOUS PORK?

If you are interested in purchasing pork, here are your options:

Option #1: 

20-25 lb mixed cut bundles – $8.00 /lb. 

  • Cuts vary per box, but will include smoked ham, roast, pork chops, sausage, bacon, ground pork, and possibly ribs.  All meat will come frozen and requires 1-1.5 cubic feet freezer space.

Option #2:

Side (Half pig) – $5.00 /lb. This price is based on the hanging carcass weight of the pig, which typically ranges between 100-120 lb per half.  Hanging weight includes bones, so you will receive less than this amount of cut meat (on average 70-90 lb cut meat per half).

While this option does not necessarily result in a price less than the bundle price, it does give you lots of flexibility to choose the cuts that you prefer.

For this option…

  • You will require approximately 3 – 4 cubic feet of freezer space.
  • You decide how you would like the meat cut (steaks, hams, breakfast sausage, ribs, bacon, side-pork (pork belly) ground pork, tenderloin, butterfly chops, special sausage flavours etc.) and any curing / smoking that you would like done (some additional charges will apply).  We are happy to help you discuss all the possibilities you can choose from.
  • You will have the option to get additional items (leaf lard, soup/dog bones, feet, head, liver)
  • Please note: Butchering instructions for side orders need to be provided to Amy at Fiddle Foot Farm as soon as possible.  Please call to arrange a time to go over the butchering options.

We will accept orders for both bundles and halves on a first-come-first-served basis.  Please place your order by email to fiddlefootfarm@gmail.com.  Please include your phone number.

We ask for a $100 deposit for a Side (cash, cheque or e-transfer to fiddlefootfarm@gmail.com) to secure your order.  Remaining payment will be collected when you pick up your pork at the farm on your pick-up day. 

No deposit is required for a bundle.

PICK-UP DAYS:

When you place your order, we will let you know which pick-up day to come.

Pick-Up Day #1: Monday October 17th

Pick-Up Day #2: Monday October 31st

Pick-Up Day #3: Monday November 14th

Please be in touch if you have any questions.

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