From Ghost Peppers to Strawberries, Sweet Basil to Sungold Tomatoes - if you want the best organic garden in 2017 - start your season at Bear Creek Organic Farm!
Join us for our 3rd Annual Spring Plant Sale on the Farm! Come shop the largest 100% Organic Plant Selection in Northern Michigan with over 20,000 plants available! Our newly expanded greenhouse will be open for shopping for 17 days straight, with over 3300 sq. ft. of organic awesomeness ready to get your garden going!
Over 40 varieties of tomato, 20 varieties of pepper (including Ghost Peppers!), and over 30 varieties of herbs
1200+ Lavender plants
5000+ Tomato Plants
3000+ Pepper Plants
7000+ Potted Herbs
We will have growing tips, workshops & classes, organic compost for sale, and quantity discounts for large gardens.
Plant Sale Dates & Times as follows:
17 DAYS STRAIGHT!
May 18th - June 3rd
Memorial Day 10am-4pm
**BYOB (Bring Your Own Bucket!) to take home some certified organic compost for your garden! Fill as many 5 gallon buckets as you like for $3 a piece :)
FROM ACORN SQUASH TO ZUCCHINI:
Cabbage (Red & Green)
Cauliflower (White, Orange, Purple)
Lettuce (Romaine, Bibb, Butterhead, Oakleaf)
Kale (Red & Green Curly, Dinosaur, Red Russian, Siberian)
Winter Squash (Acorn, Butternut, Delicata, Dumpling, Buttercup)
Tomatoes (Cherry, Heirloom, Beefsteak, Grape, Pear, Roma, Paste)
Peppers (Hot, Bell, Sweet, Heirloom, Rare)
*NEW* ORGANIC FLOWERS:
For those of you that have followed us from the beginning, you may know we jumpstarted our farm with a crowd-sourced business loan for $10,000 through Kiva.org. Over 200 individuals contributed to this loan with an average loan of $48. This helped us complete our first hoophouse.
It was a supposed to be a 3-year loan. We paid it off 10 months early. Why? The farm is growing at a rapid rate, and we wanted to show our lenders how much of a boost it provided. In addition, by paying that one off so quickly, we are able to apply for a 2nd loan. And we have! We are 2 days into the 30-day fundraising process and have already raised 20% of the total. Sound interesting?
You can see the full loan here: https://www.kiva.org/lend/1249042
Otherwise, just keep reading for a description of the business development over the last couple of years and what we intend to do with the loan funds!
We decided to start this business to practice what we preach, become good stewards of the environment, and improve our local community. We started our business just about 4 years ago, and it has been one heck of a ride so far! Perhaps we were naive, but we did not realize JUST how much demand existed for local, organic farm goods. We thought we had some good ideas, but we did not realize just how fast we would need to run to keep up. We’re proud to have been profitable for the last 2 years, but our biggest challenge continues to be keeping up with demand.
This is actually our 2nd Kiva loan - we just finished paying off our first loan, in full and 10 months early. That trajectory is reflective of our business growth. The faster we can increase capacity and better serve our customers, the better.
Our future goals center around 2 things - our customers and our community. The better we can serve our customers, the more we can afford to take care of our community. Thanks to our 1st Kiva loan and our greenhouse and hoop houses, we have been harvesting fresh salad greens for 140 weeks straight. Continuously. This is what our customers want and we work tirelessly to make it happen. As our business grows, we are adding monthly farm tours, dozens of gardening and beekeeping workshops, and hiring more local talent.
We are proud to be our town’s first USDA Certified Organic Farm. We are proud to promote good business practices amongst our peers. And we are very proud that we have been able to help energize our community’s burgeoning local food scene.
This loan, in conjunction with other funding, will allow us to increase our greenhouse growing space by 50% (1200 sq. ft.)! It will help us accommodate more farm visitors by tripling our parking area, and improve our receiving area so we can receive truckloads of compost year round, as well as an increasing flow of deliveries by semi. Furthermore, this loan will support an enhanced farmers market presence as we continue to grow to serve our customers.
Estimated expenditures: Greenhouse Expansion (trolley system, benches, fans, labor, etc) - $5000 Parking/Receiving Expansion (7500 sq. ft. gravel lot, labor, landscaping) - $4000 Market Improvements (bigger tent, signage, trailer modifications) - $1000
We expect these investments to increase our business revenue by 25%, with greenhouse revenues almost doubling this season. We continue to see increased demand for our products, with our ability to keep up being our main obstacle. This is a good problem, and a call we plan to answer!
In the last 3 years, our farm has gone from $0 in sales to almost $200,000 on less than 2 acres. We see this greenhouse expansion and increased operational capacity as a way to increase our labor force from a husband/wife team to adding 2 year round employees and another 1-3 seasonal workers. We’ve been growing quickly, but with intention - and we can see the path forward and this loan will help us get there.
We are humbled, excited, and honored to be among the 2017 Good Food Award Finalists for our limited-release Boyne Raw Honey. The Good Food Awards are the pinnacle of what it means to be a wholesome, pure food producer in the 21st century. We've dreamed of producing a product that merits Good Food status and are humbled that we have achieved such an honor only five years into our beekeeping enterprise. As the only honey selected from the state of Michigan, it is hard to express the renewed sense of pride, mission, and dedication we have to maintaining the healthiest honeybee hives in one of the most pristine environments in the world - northern Michigan!
This is our 2017 Good Food Award Finalist Honey! Selected as one of the best honeys in the nation, and the only official selection from the state of Michigan, our Boyne Honey is unfiltered, unheated, and never-blended!
Boyne Honey boasts diverse flora from a thousand acre forest preserve, located in the middle of Boyne Country. These bees were invited to this preserve as part of one of the largest native habitat restoration projects in the area. The evolving forest landscape has created a floral buffet ripe for the picking and that diversity is on full display in this honey. Boyne Honey is a dynamic woodland honey, naturally complex and earthy.
Flavor Notes: Oak, Pine, Walnut, Grass, Mint
THIS IS AMERICA: ANNOUNCING THE 2017 GOOD FOOD AWARD FINALISTS
San Francisco, CA (November 14, 2016) – The Good Food Awards could not be more proud to announce the 291 Finalists of 2017, representing not just the best of America’s growing food movement, but the best of America. At a time when the values our country stands for are in question, they exemplify all that is right from coast to coast: our proud immigrant history, stewardship of a rich and fertile agricultural landscape, a spirit of innovation and the daily choice to balance personal gain with the wellbeing of the commons.
Representing 14 categories and 38 states, all Finalists rose to the top in a blind tasting of the 2,059 entries from nearly every state and passed a rigorous vetting to confirm they met specific Good Food Awards standards around environmentally sound agriculture practices, good animal husbandry, sourcing transparency and responsible relationships throughout the supply chain. Amongst their ranks are Nadia Hubbi in California, a Muhammara crafter keeping her Syrian family’s tradition alive; Nacxitl Gaxiola in Brooklyn, whose company was created to honor the traditional salsas, moles, escabechese and adobes of Mexico; Paul Lieggi in Oregon working with the fishermen and women of the Nez Perce, Umatilla, Yakima and Warm Springs tribes to source hoop caught Chinook Salmon for his aromatic hardwood smoked salmon; and Ann and Dan Trudel, a husband and wife farmer and preserver growing and pickling organic brussels sprouts in the heart of rural Ohio. These 291 Finalists - and the hundreds of farmers, ranchers, fishermen and colleagues they collaborate with - are actively building the sort of world we want to live in.
The 200 Good Food Award Winners will be announced Friday, January 20, 2017, at a gala Awards Ceremony at the historic Herbst Theater in the San Francisco War Memorial, on the same stage where the United Nations charter was signed, and will be followed by two more days of celebration. Medals will be bestowed by renowned chef and activist Alice Waters and organics pioneer Nell Newman, tipping their hats to these exceptional food producers. A reception with the winning food and drink will follow the ceremony, offering both regional ‘tasting plates’ and small bites created by local chefs.
What is the Bear Creek Membership Program?
Like a membership to an exclusive farm club - this program is for folks who want access to special offers, discounts on their farm market purchases, and want to support a thriving local farm!
For only $15 you can join the loyalty program. You will immediately get a custom Bear Creek reusable shopping bag (pictured), with which, you gain access to discounts when shopping at the farmers market, on our website, buying in bulk, or pre-ordering.
When shopping with the Bear Creek Bag, you will receive:
10% off of your produce purchases
10% off of potted herb and cut flower purchases
Buy 3 jars of honey and receive a 4th one free (a savings of 25%)!
10% off spring transplants for your garden
Special wholesale pricing on all bulk orders
**NEW** A special 10% coupon code to use for all online orders
There is no limit to these savings.
Additionally, by becoming a Bear Creek member, you will join our members-only email list and be the first to know about bulk veggie availability (tomatoes, basil, kale, etc).
All this for only 15 bucks?! It's true.
Shipping is only if you would like the bag shipped to you pronto! Otherwise, select "on-farm pickup" and we will get it to you at a time that is mutually convenient!
Link to Sign up here: http://bearcreekorganicfarm.com/products/bear-creek-membership-program-sign-up
The Northern Michigan Local Food Hero Award is an award presented each fall at the Around the Table Local Foods Conference held at North Central Michigan College in Petoskey. Designed to recognize a local food superhero or heroine for their contributions, accomplishments, and good deeds to the Northern Michigan Local Food Community. The 2015 Award featured the highest voter turnout and largest diversity of nominations since the Award's inception.
We at Bear Creek Organic Farm are deeply humbled and sincerely grateful to receive this honor! There are many businesses, farmers, and food advocates doing excellent work in northern Michigan on the local foods front and we are thrilled people thought our efforts over the last couple years worthy of this honor. From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU everyone for the continued support and passion for healthy, local, organic food!
A few words from the Conference about Bear Creek Organic Farm by community members who nominated Anne & Brian for this award:
"Anne and Brian have transformed what it means to be a local farmer. Not only have they built a sustainable and growing business model, but they do so with full transparency which gives people a reason to trust and know their farmer. They are models in the farming and business community. They are leading by example that farmers can earn a living wage."
"They give back to the community with their knowledge and with their produce. Held classes for children at their farm to help connect kids with their food, taught workshops on bees to help inform people of bee's important role, provided our town with the highest quality produce and honey, shared their financial records and business model to help others build a successful business, and taught art classes to the community. Not only do these two take time to mentor children with farm focused activities, they also coach basketball and teach art, keeping a strong presence in the community."
"They have brought hope. A hope that instills faith that there is still passion to spread the love of watching life's force grow with delicious food and healthy people."
For a full description of the event, Local Food Hero Award, and interview with Anne & Brian in the local newspaper please click here.