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New Year’s resolution 2016

Dear Friends of Many Hands Organic Farm,
 
I have made a New Year’s resolution to write to you each month this year. This resolution is in part made possible by the “hiring” (for barter) of Kathleen Geary and Roshni Prabakar to help with Mail Chimp deliveries, website management, and generally with office data management – never my forte. Nina Marcinowski remains as our bookkeeper, also for barter. David Petrovick hired on last summer to manage our machinery for us, on an as needed basis, and both Jack and I are thrilled with the relationship.
 
Also still on staff are Clare Caldwell – since 2008 and Lindsay Peck – since 2013. Jason Cucchiara will rejoin us very soon after being away at jail for the last time. We are the backbone of the field crew. Stetson School sends over a couple of boys 1 to 2 times per week to volunteer. Tricia Blanchette will rejoin us in March for a few hours per week. Later we will add another staff member and a handful of working shareholders.
 
These days, between ordering seeds, animals and supplies, applying for organic certification, updating websites, and marketing, we spend a little bit of time each day laying cardboard, followed by leaves or hay or wood chips. We covered an entire quarter acre in the pond field, have also covered our hoop houses, and now are picking away at a little less than half an acre in the west field. Determined to get rid of the 4’ tractor driven roto-tiller, we am committed to an assortment of no till methodologies for our 2 – 2 ½ acres of vegetable crop land. This all in the name of restoring more soil carbon, building better tilth, making earthworms happier, and growing better crops . . . .Be sure to read Jack’ white paper on carbon restoration if you have not already. You should walk away a believer, and also educated on the topic – available now in 9 languages at www.nofamass.org/carbon.

 

Now is a good time to join the CSA for 2016. We are proud to announce that we delivered well over promised quantities of produce – strongly driven by apples, pears, peaches, raspberries and plums – to our shareholders last year. Check it out at www.mhof.net/csa . We are short on money and long on expenses at this time of year, and your early reservation is greatly appreciated.
 
Our meat is available for order now too- pork, lard, chicken, old layers, eggs, turkey, beef and tallow – all certified organic for 2016. Read more at www.mhof.net/meat .
Presently available at the farm: Call or email to 978-355-2853 or Julie@mhof.net to arrange a time to come by.
Beef – not certified organic and from the 2015 crop
•    Top round roasts at 4 lbs. - $10/lb.
•    Standing rib roasts at 4 lbs. - $15/lb.
•    Stew beef- $9/lb.
•    Ground beef- $9/lb.
•    Short ribs - $9/lb.
•    10 NY sirloin steak at 4 lbs. - $14/lb.
Pork
•    Ham - $14.25/lb. (not certified organic)
•    Bacon ends - $11.25/lb. (not certified organic)
•    Regular style pork ribs - $9.50/lb.
•    Country style ribs - $9.50/lb.
•    Pork chops - $9.50/lb.
Lard - $25/quart
Canned tomatoes - $6/quart
Tallow - $25/quart (not certified organic)
Lavender and Peppermint soap - $6/bar (not certified organic)
Comfrey salve with lavender and beeswax - $8/2 oz. jar and $15/4 oz. jar (not certified organic)
Stocks
•    Pork - $7.50/qt.
•    Chicken - $7.50/qt.
•    Beef - $7.50/qt. (not certified organic)
Eggs - $7/dozen
Apple Rings – 3 oz. - $5/bag
Dried Peaches – 8 oz. $10/bag
Canned Applesauce - $7/quart
Frozen Applesauce - $6/quart
Canned Juices
•    Apple Juice - $7/quart
•    Grape Juice - $10/quart
•    Plum Juice - $5/pint
Frozen Peaches - $6/lb. in bags of around 2 lbs.

Here is an ad from a friend of mine – a good deal for someone wanting to farm.
 

Farm Land Opportunity in Petersham

 
I have space on my property in Petersham for beginning or established farmers who need a place to farm.  The land is cleared and a portion (100' x 40') has been tilled and was farmed last year.  Another even larger space has been mowed for two years and could be tilled or could be farmed using no-till methods.  The total space available is around 1.5 acres.  The soil is good.
 
I will pay for a soil test and provide soil amendments (organic).  There is a spring on the property but it was not used last year.  I would consider collaborating on a project to make that water available.  My motivation is to have the land used and to support local folks who wish to grow food everywhere.  Contact me if you would like to visit and explore this opportunity.  Please note that no housing is available on the premises. 
 
Contact name:  Diane Nassif
Email address:  dianenassif@gmail.com
 
Enjoy the beauty of winter this month, and the lengthening days.

Julie

 

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