PRZOOM - /newswire/ -
Monroe, NC, United States, 2008/03/19 - North Carolina grown, certified organic plants, produce and flowers are available for market and direct sales.
The North Carolina Crop Improvement Association, Inc. (NCIIA) has determined that Windcrest Farm complies with the Organic Certification Standards of the United States Department of Agriculture National Organic Program. Windcrest Farm grows vegetable plants, medicinal and culinary herbs, flowers, and seasonal produce in greenhouses, hoop houses and fields in Union County, NC
“This is an important step for the growth of our family farm”, said Mary Roberts, co-owner of Windcrest Farm. As a certified organic greenhouse, we can now supply other certified organic market growers in our region with vegetable, herb and flower transplants. From the field, our produce and flowers will carry an easily recognizable symbol that tells our customers that these products have been grown with organic practices. While we love to personally tell our customers about how we grow our plants and produce, we can’t be in front of every customer. The USDA Organic symbol on our products will help tell part of our farm's story as we expand our markets.”
Established in 1978 with a large family garden, Windcrest Farm's 14 acres have always been managed using organic and sustainable farming methods. In 2004, the greenhouse was built to provide transplant seedlings for both the farm and for market. Today, Windcrest Farm heirloom vegetable plants are available to both home gardeners and market growers. Seasonal produce is available to consumers, chefs and value-added food producers who want unique varieties of vegetables that are raised for flavor and nutrition without the use of synthetic chemicals.
Certified organic cut flowers are also available. "I have been asked why someone would care if the flower bouquet they purchase is raised organically", said Ms. Roberts. "Some people will wonder why it matters, because a flower bouquet is not something you eat. Buying flowers from growers who use organic and sustainable methods means you support growers who minimize damage to soil and water systems and are concerned about the quality of the farm's working conditions."
Educational opportunities grow at Windcrest Farm, where school-age as well as adult students learn how to grow their own food. "With the increased awareness of the importance of local food, many people want to grow vegetables in their own backyard. That's really local", said Ms. Roberts. "Whether you want to start with vegetable transplants from our greenhouse for a patio pot or backyard garden, or you want to learn how to start your plants from seed, we have a workshop that will teach you the basics and beyond."
Windcrest Farm is one of only two certified organic farms in Union County, NC and one of only three certified greenhouses supplying seedlings to market and home gardeners in North Carolina. Plants, seasonal vegetables, herbs and flowers are available by direct sales to customers through local farmer's markets and on-farm by appointment only. On-farm workshops and off-farm seminars are scheduled throughout the year.