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July 12, 2014
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An agricultural haven: Part 1


Here are a few of the many farming ventures already happening, with products sold both locally and at the NYC Green Market: the Tonjes Farm has expanded to cheese, yogurt, kefir and veal. The Dirie Farm sells raw cows’ milk and eggs. Another sells raw goats milk and cheese. M&S Farm runs a USDA kosher slaughter house and bottles milk. At least 20 sell beef and pork directly to customers. A few take animals for USDA processing some distance away and sell to local retail outlets. Others make maple syrup, honey, jams, jellies, breads and cakes. A few plan to expand farm stands and/or start micro dairies.

This is just the beginning of the list of farmers who have already started operations to produce niche products that can command profitable prices. Part 2 of this column, to be printed in July, will examine opportunities still to be explored and the ways in which we can move the county forward as an agricultural haven.

[Sonja Hedlund (sonja@applepondfarm.com) is one of the founders of the Sullivan County Farm Network, and co-owner of Apple Pond Farm, a Renewable Energy Education Center.]