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Farm-Fresh Fruits and Veggies All Winter Long

Farmers-market

Canticle Farm’s Winter Market Offers Fresh Produce, Meats, Sweets and More

By Eva Potter

Area grocery stores are typically stocked with organic and non-organic produce, but there is another healthful option for purchasing fruits and veggies and supporting your local farmers at the same time. Make one stop at Canticle Farm’s Winter Market and you’ll quickly understand why local is better.

All winter long through April, Canticle’s Winter Market offers a wide variety of certified naturally grown produce. This winter you can choose from all sorts of greens (spinach, lettuce mix, mesclun mix, kale, Swiss chard, arugula, pak choi, mizuna) and storage crops (carrots, beets, many varieties of potatoes and onions, Daikon radishes, turnips, garlic, shallots, kohlrabi, Brussels sprouts, cabbages, etc.). They even offer stew mix and juicing combinations.

Canticle Farm, a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm in Allegany, N.Y., has been growing winter produce for years and holds public sales every other week. You don’t have to be a shareholder to purchase from the market. Everyone is welcome to buy nutritious produce and related farm products from the market year round.

Canticle’s vegetables are Certified Naturally Grown (CNG) following  USDA organic principles. CNG is a grassroots organization of mostly farmers and serves smaller producers that sell directly to the consumer. More information about CNG is available at www.naturallygrown.org.

How does Canticle Farm grow produce in winter when freezing temperatures and snow-covered fields seem to make this impossible? The answer is high tunnels. These tall, tube-like greenhouses provide an insulated, cold-weather growing environment for cold hardy and disease-resistant varieties of greens.

According to Canticle Farm Manager Mark Printz, the high tunnels create a microclimate that can sustain plant life. They are usually heated naturally through solar radiation, which is converted to thermal energy that remains trapped within the tunnels.

In addition to vitamin- and mineral-rich produce, local vendors sell their specialty products on market days. New Horizon Creamery offers fresh eggs, cheese, ice cream and cheese curd processed on location and makes their delicious varieties straight from their own herd of dairy cows.

Flanigan Farm of Hinsdale offers naturally raised chicken, pork, turkey and beef. BRD’s Forever Farm sells naturally raised heritage meats (smoked pork, fresh frozen pork, fresh sausage, ground beef, steaks and eggs) from pasture-fed animals, which never contain antibiotics, steroids or hormones. All seasonings used on the meats are organic and all cured meats are nitrate free.

Tan Childs Mountain Grown Blueberries & Fruits offers frozen blueberries —grown in their unique soil — along with blueberry jams, all containing little or no chemical pesticides.

Kumbha Moon Soap Company’s natural homemade soaps come in delightful fragrances and are gentle on your skin. They do not contain synthetic colorants, fragrances or additives and are made with food-grade oils.

For those with a sweet tooth, try products from Country Honey, Over the Hill Maple and Phearsdorf Honey, including syrups, maple cream and candy.

Canticle Farm Market is located at 3809 Old State Rd. in Allegany and is open to the public on Tuesdays from 2-6 p.m. during the winter on the following dates: Jan. 6 and 20; Feb. 3 and 17; March 3, 17, and 31; and April 14 and 28.

Once you taste the fresh-picked flavor, it’s likely you’ll make the Canticle Winter Market a regular stop on your food shopping trips.

Canticle Farm also sells shares, which entitle the holder to weekly allotments of in-season produce during the spring, summer and fall growing seasons.

For more information, visit Canticle Farm on Facebook or at www.canticlefarm.org. Email canticleoffice@yahoo.com or call (716) 373-0200, ext. 3358, to get on their newsletter email list.

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