In 2007, we started with only two-acres of our first crop of winter canola to press for culinary oil, and we haven’t looked back. We quickly found out how much the local deer populations appreciated our canola feeding stations, and needed a solution. Sunflowers became that solution. Although predation played a role in our decision to grow sunflowers, the need also had to encompass our overall vision for our farm. From our motto to “compliment not compete”, grew the desire to produce a product that has been absent from the New England agricultural scene. Culinary oils are the result of that desire. While researching how culinary oils are produced, we discovered that not only could we produce a human food product, but the meal byproduct, being high in protein, would give us the potential to produce our own home-grown feed for all our livestock. Our feed costs to date have been drastically reduced, and we have control over its contents. Our ultimate goal is to produce multi-use crops that aid in the sustainability of our farm and the local food system.
we grow over 10-acres of sunflowers that we cold-press into unrefined, Non-GMO sunflower oil using traditional extruding methods. We have a refill station at the farm and at all farmer’s markets we attend to reduce waste and encourage recycling. We have created feed rations for our hogs and sheep, and are developing a ration for our chickens. In only one season of feeding our own grain, our processing locations for our livestock have commented on the tenderness of the meat that they process from our animals. We attribute that increase in quality solely to the sunflower meal.
Anyone that has seen one of our sunflower fields in bloom, knows just how magnificent it is. In 2015, we decided to share those beautiful fields with the community. We invite people to the farm every fall for a corn maze, so why not for the sunflowers? We also decided that this would be a wonderful opportunity to give back to our community. We partnered with Make-A-Wish NH to help make NH Wishes Blossom. At the end of the festival every year, we donate 10% of the farm profits to this worthwhile organization. The first year we donated $1000, and last year we more than doubled that donation. This year’s festival is set to be our best yet, with live music, more kids activities, and horse-drawn wagon rides.
One last thought
The real value is not in the products we sell. We are making life-long connections with the people that visit us, and we are changing how our community thinks and feels about the food they eat.
…Camelina is pressed and ready for sale! (more info soon)
...we are still working on that pumpkin seed oil!