The FGU Fresh Produce Grant at Clagett Farm, is off and running…a great start to the 2010 harvesting season! The season runs for 26 weeks, and CAFB partner organizations come and pick up thousands of pounds of fresh, chemical-free, produce to disperse to their clients. Last Tuesday marked the farm’s first harvest day, and Wednesday was the first day of pick ups for the Fresh Produce Grant recipients.
This past Friday morning nine grant recipient organizations came to Clagett Farm for their introduction to the Fresh Produce Grant program. We could not have asked for a more beautiful day! Staff learned the specifics of the program including, how to weigh produce at the wash station and new vegetable varieties. They also tasted recipes that highlighted “spicy mix” a zesty mixture of garden greens that are unfamiliar to many people. Jodi Balis, the Director of Nutrition Education made a delicious spicy mix soup, and my favorite—turkey meatballs with spicy mix and quinoa. So tasty!
Once the specifics of the program were out of the way, the group headed outside to tour the farm with Michael Heller, the Director of Clagett Farm. This gave participants a broader view of the importance of local sustainable agriculture. Michael explained some of the sustainable growing practices used at Clagett Farm and how this type of agriculture effects the soil and water quality of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Check out the video below to see what Michael says about soil:
The Fresh Produce Grant program is a partnership between the Capital Area Food Bank and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. The Chesapeake Bay Foundation owns the farm, and runs various programs—including a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), tree nursery, and educational programs about the Chesapeake Bay and sustainable practices to protect it.