On March 25, GreenStar members, councilmembers and staff joined over 100 community members in Brooktondale at an open house hosted by local farm Cayuga Pure Organics (CPO). The festivities started with a tour highlighting the farm’s recently completed processing facility. People gathered to learn the history of the farm from co-owner Erick Smith, and what is involved in getting their beans, grains and seeds from field to table from CPO’s inspirational advisor and enthusiast John Hamilton.
Afterwards, people lined up eagerly to enjoy a free meal provided by GreenStar including chili made with CPO’s organic black beans, a salad made with local hydroponic lettuce and local cider.
“Supporting local farms and helping to build a sustainable local food system is a part of GreenStar’s mission and values,” says Liz Karabinakis, GreenStar’s Member and Community Services Manager who helped coordinate the event. “Helping to make local food accessible in our community is more than operating a retail business- it is about connecting with our farmers and being a part of their accomplishments.”
Community members and businesses that have been instrumental at helping CPO overcome daunting challenges where identified to the crowd and given a heartfelt appreciation.
“We are thankful that so many people value what we are trying to do,” says Erick Smith, “This is a great opportunity to work together and help develop a local food economy that is rooted in ecological responsibility and strives to grow, produce and sell the highest quality products to our community.”
The afternoon ended with a farewell to CPO farmer Melissa Madden who is pursuing a farming endeavor in Wisconsin, and a warm welcome to Shamus Clancey, the newest member of CPO’s beanery team.
Guests were excited to learn that the processing facility is operational and black, pinto, small red and cranberry beans, as well as whole oats and whole wheat, are now available at the Co-op!
As busy as the CPO team is putting finishing touches on its new bean facility and gearing up for the upcoming growing season, they also continue to expand their operation. The farm recently acquired and will soon install a commercial mill. Watch for locally grown, locally milled whole grain flours at GreenStar soon!
New in Grocery
New pork products from The Piggery are now in our fresh meat case. Vegetarian? Try some new vegan Benevolent Bacon.
It's finally here (again)! We've dotted the I's and crossed the T's and finished our rigorous farm-inspection procedure for the Piggery family of farms. That's right, we're finally selling those local cuts right here at the Co-op! The Piggery has teamed up with Interbrook Farms to raise pigs that adhere to our bylaws, producing these cuts exclusively for GreenStar. Heather, owner of the Piggery, has created a wonderful, thriving business and farm whose impeccable reputation is spreading far and wide all across New York state. We're very excited to join the grocery stores, cafes, and markets selling their goods throughout the area, all the way down through the Hudson Valley and into New York City. Support your local farmer and try some fresh Piggery cuts today! For those of you who aren't celebrating this new addition, there's a new vegan alternative in the cooler — Hickory & Sage Benevolent Bacon from Sweet Earth! It's GMO-free and 100-percent vegan.