Wind Whipped Farm: Launching the Local Food Box Program
Alex and I are now back in Metchosin, BC, where we are starting our 3rd season with Wind Whipped Farm, a small market garden business we originally launched in 2008. After our 2010 summer on the road biking from farm to farm, we’ve returned to Metchosin with a long list of systems and ideas we are working hard to implement and adapt to the ½ acre vegetable plot and orchard we manage.
Thanks to all the farmers that hosted us and shared their farming knowledge, we are motivated and inspired to improve our little business and continue growing food. Our land arrangement at the moment is a 1-year lease with Alex’s parents, from whom we are renting our field. We developed our lease based on a template provided in A Guide to Farmland Access Agreements: Leases, Profits à Prendre, Licences and Memoranda of Understanding, a publication we have found very useful (thanks to The Land Conservancy of BC and Farm Folk City Folk!)
At this point, we view Wind Whipped Farm as a mid-term plan and are making investments with a 3 to 5 years payback horizon. We want to maintain a small-scale operation to allow us the flexibility to pursue other interests like going back to school, writing and becoming more involved with the National Farmers Union. On the other hand, our “small-scale” approach is already keeping us very busy!
In the last few months we “re-renovated” the cabin we live in, undertook thorough crop planning (thanks to the Crop Planning Handbook published by the Canadian Organic Growers), expanded our fenced-in growing area, converted a chicken coop to a tool shed, are in the process of converting a tool-shed into a washing-shed, created our Wind Whipped Farm website and much more. Our most exciting endeavour, however, has been the development of the Local Food Box Program.
The Local Food Box is a partnership between four Metchosin producers that allows customers to conveniently and directly access local foods. Local Food Box Customers choose to receive, on a weekly basis, a selection of:
- Fruits and vegetables, organically grown by Wind Whipped Farm
- Local wheat flour and Metchosin-raised meats including pork, lamb and chicken, from Parry Bay Sheep Farm and Stillmeadow Farm
- Fresh-baked breads including Baguette, Whole Wheat, Rustic White, and Rye, from Fry’s Red Wheat Bread
Local Food Box customers can pick-up their boxes either:
1) In Metchosin on Fridays, from 3PM to 6PM
2) In a central Victoria location (hours TBA)
Needless to say we are in the midst of full-on marketing of this unique product. For those with connections in the Victoria area, please do spread the word as we still have boxes available. For more information on the Local Food Box Program, please check out www.windwhippedfarm.com and send any questions or comments to windwhippedfarm(at)gmail(dot)com.