By Julia DuBois, Heritage Newspapers
Pesticides and growth hormones are two things that are typically used on farms that are providing much of country with produce and meats. This is why one local family decided to start its own farm and go organic.
Two Creeks Organics in Manchester started five years ago when co-owner Mark Sanford became increasingly interested in a more nature-friendly way of production. According to wife Amie Sanford, Mark took a number of college courses to learn more about sustainable farming and become a certified farmer of naturally grown produce.
Mark’s idea quickly blossomed into 20 acres of fruits and vegetables, all of which are planted, cultivated, and gathered with the help of extended family members.
The difference between Two Creeks Organics and other farms is that the organic farmers grow their produce using naturally sustaining methods. That means no chemicals or pesticides go into the growing process or preparation of the farm land.
According to Amie Sanford, Two Creeks Organics participates in a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), meaning that members of the community can “purchase shares of the produce grown at the farm, and they receive weekly portions of their share of fruits and vegetable.”
She said most of the business at Two Creeks Organics is conducted in this way. The farm now even boasts fresh eggs, and soon fresh chicken, which members can purchase shares for as well.
“Of course a CSA means that shareholders must learn to eat seasonally, depending on what time of year it is, and what we’re growing,” said Sanford.
However, whenever the farm experiences bountiful amounts of produce, the Sanford family will sell these extras at the farmer’s market on Thursdays. People can go there to get fruits and vegetables without joining the CSA.
Although the farm is currently managed by family, Amie Sanford says that sometimes shareholders want to participate in the production of their food. In these cases, Two Creeks Organics allows those individuals to come to the farm to work, helping the Sanford family with the farming process.
The family experiences very little downtime, even when the farming season is over.
“People think that in the winter the work stops,” said Amie Sanford, “but no, because then we have to start getting everything ready for the following year.”
According to her, the entire family gets its food from Two Creeks Organics. She said that since experiencing the difference of naturally grown produce, she refuses to accept anything less.
“You don’t know anymore what’s going into the stuff they’re selling at the store, and I won’t settle,” she said.
Two Creeks Organics will be holding its spring open house event on Saturday, May 15 from noon until 4 p.m. It is an open event to the public and will feature live music, food, tours of the farm and other local producers and artists.
For information on how to join the CSA program at Two Creeks Organics, or for more reading material on organic farming and events, visit the farm’s Web site at www.twocreeksorganics.com.
Julia DuBois is an intern at Heritage Newspapers and a student at the University of Michigan. She can be reached through Jana Miller at (734) 429-7380 or firstname.lastname@example.org.