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The Catskill Mountain Foundation farm

A Natural Agriculture farm was started in upstate New York the summer of 1999 by the Catskill Mountain Foundation.  The farm covers roughly 5 acres and is located in the Village of Hunter in the Hudson Valley approximately two hours drive from New York City.  Based on Shumei’s Natural Agriculture approach, the farm does not use any chemicals, fertilizers or pesticides on its fields and the crops are grown with pure soil, water and natural seeds.

The farm has a heated greenhouse, two unheated hoop houses, a processing building for washing and packaging our mixed farm greens and for storing seeds and a field of crops. The Foundation recently expanded the Sugar Maples facility, which includes a new 3,000 square foot greenhouse, new Farm Visitor’s Center and a 4-acre field.  

They grow a variety of crops, including different varieties of lettuce, kale, mizuna, tatsoi, Swiss chard, as well as beets, turnips, carrots, basil, cucumbers, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, potatoes, zucchini, beans, heirloom winter and summer squash, asparagus, peas, beets, peppers, onions, and scallion.  The signature product is their ‘Mixed Farm Greens’, which is different from what is found in most supermarkets.  It is a unique mixture of about 6 or 7 different pre-washed types of mature lettuce such as butter crunch, dear tongue, and red leaf with other greens like chard and kale – all grown without the use of any chemicals, fertilizers or pesticides providing a truly natural taste. 

Fresh Natural Agriculture produce from the farm is delivered to the Red Barn Farm Market each week.  The Fresh Harvest Café also uses ingredients from the farm and Farm Market. The Café is conveniently located on the property and offers a variety of delicious, homemade items and special brunch, lunch and dinner menus prepared by Executive Chef Francine Scherer, the former owner of the New York Soho Charcuterie.

The farm also offers tours to the public and works local schoolchildren. The foundation recently received a grant to develop a curriculum on Natural Agriculture, which will be inline with the course standards set by the Department of Education. The joint venture is being undertaken by Kenji Ban, a Shumei Natural Agriculture farmer and local teachers from the Windham and Tannersville, NY school districts.  

Location: Hunter, New York
Size: 10-acres
Farm Director: Kenji Ban
Farm Owner: Catskill Mountain Foundation
Established: 1999

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