From the category archives:

Local Food Movement

Virginia FarmCentral Virginia is home to some of the most beautiful farms. They can range from a 30 acre apple orchard, to over 300 acres of a cattle farm. Eating organic is becoming a very popular health trend, not only because of the benefits to our environment, but also the many health benefits to our bodies.

What exactly is organic? Organic farms prohibits the uses pesticides and chemicals on their crops and will not use hormones and antibiotics in their animals.

Going organic isn’t an overnight process. It requires a lot of research, information and then deciding if going organic is best for you and your farm. The first step is to get certified but don’t think the process ends there. The USDA had developed many guidelines and programs to make sure the farms stay organic. This means strict rules, inspections and testing, looking into complaints and taking action if the farm is in violation. Interested in making the change? The
VDACS   (Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services) can provide more information.

The United States of Agriculture also provides a tremendous amount of information on programs and services.

Did you know that Dave Matthews purchased a local farm outside Charlottesville, VA in 2002 and began building a certified organic farm? He even put the 1261 acres farm under a protective land conservation easement to protect it against development in the future.

Eating organic means less pesticides in the food, thus less in your body. Many farmers are choosing to go organic, therefore having healthier farms and consumers.

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Virginia’s 2014 Apple Crop

by Staff on October 2, 2014

Ginger Gold Apples in VirginiaWe may be heavy but don’t call us fat.  Can you guess what in Virginia weighs 180 million pounds?  If you answered ‘Virginia’s 2014 apple crop‘… you’d get a gold star.

It’s been a great year for Virginia’s famed apples.  Because our Central Virginia area sits primarily east of the Blue Ridge Mountains, our orchards benefit from rich soils plus protection from winds and extremely low temperatures that can cause frost.   This year the weather has been good to our apple growers and the crop looks wonderful.

There are more than 50 recognized apple orchards in the state and likely many other smaller operations/farms as well.

The Virginia Apple Growers Association based in Charlottesville has lots of information about our apples in their link HERE.   They say that an acre of apple trees could yield approximately 700 bushels of apples every season.  Different varieties of trees have varying yields from 2 to 8 bushels per tree.   And you know that if we’re talking about apples, we always need to give a nod to Virginia Gold apples, our favorite forever.

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Charlottesville Hosts 2-Day Agriculture Fair

by Staff September 7, 2014

DAY 1: – Agriculture Celebration on Main St. in Charlottesville Friday, September 19, dinner time Charlottesville Historic Downtown Mall  On Friday Sept. 19th on Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall there will be a special food event.  Restaurants on the downtown mall have teamed with the Local Food Hub and the Albemarle Farm Bureau to provide special local [...]

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Belly Up to the Farm in Central VA

by Staff August 23, 2014

We write often about the innovative farmers and their products in Central VA.   Farmers seem to be producing almost everything from solar power to chicken lips these days!   We have lots of quality wineries and vineyards in our Charlottesville area,  and now several busy farms are raising hops for their own craft breweries. As small ‘craft’ breweries (sometimes [...]

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Heirloom Tomatoes

by Staff August 17, 2014

August reminds me of the part of the summer when my mother used to treat me to a tomato sandwich.  I know that sounds strangely simple in this age of fast food smorgasbords, but a tomato/mayo sandwich on fresh bread… tomato still warm from the garden… is a cherished memory that I can still taste and smell [...]

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Let The Sweet Corn Begin

by Staff June 27, 2014

This culinary experience is a bit like eating local fresh strawberries or asparagus … if you eat local sweet corn when it’s in season, it’s a wonderful treat.  Although our local strawberry season is mostly done, the corn season is just beginning.  And it’s shaping up as one of the best corn crops ever in Virginia. We’ve had [...]

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