July 7, 2022

FARM NEWS

Castlegar deliveries have switched to Monday!

One more reminder that our Castlegar area deliveries, which include Passmore, Krestova, Glade and Pass Creek will now be on Mondays between 4 pm and 7 pm.

Get your orders in by Sunday at midnight to be included in our Monday deliveries! 🚗

 

We’re looking for a new farm and we need your help! 👨‍🌾👩‍🌾

We recently were told the news that the property where we are currently farming is going to be sold. Thankfully, we will be able to finish out this season and next season, but after that we will need a new place to farm and live.

We want to start putting out feelers now because moving farms is not a simple process. To start a new farm somewhere else would likely involve breaking new ground. This will require at least 2 seasons of amending the soil before it’s a half decent spot for growing in.

Ideally we could find a new farm this year. We could create a new garden space and plant a cover crop which would begin the process of amending the soil. Then next season, we would continue to plant more cover crops, add compost and organic matter, and do whatever else we could to bring a diverse set of living microorganisms into the soil.

Our ideal situation would include:

  • 1/2 acres of fenced garden
  • Ample access to ground water
  • On-farm housing
  • No further than 30 minutes from either Nelson or Castlegar
  • Potential for a 5 year lease
  • Outbuildings for cooler/ wash-pack area


If you know of a property that could potentially meet these specs or come close, please let us know.

Unfortunately the scenario we are facing is nothing new for young farmers. With land prices being astronomical, little to no access to low-interest or no-interest loans, and with no access to free community-shared farm land, young farmers are forced to work with whatever opportunities come our way. It’s a deep flaw in our agricultural system. One I hope the next generation doesn’t have to deal with.

But, we are still hopeful that we can make it work. We started with a scraggly old abandoned house lot in Edmonton with no money, access to land or connections. We now have a legitimate farm business here in the Kootenays, so we feel like anything is possible 🙂

If you think you can help simply reply to this email or send inquires to emily@confluencefarms.ca

 

NEW PRODUCTS

Garlic Scape Pesto is back!

For this pesto we pulled garlic scapes fresh from our garlic patch and then blended it up with Italian Parmesan, walnuts and extra virgin olive oil. The garlic scapes create a beautiful creamy garlic flavour.

This is easily our favorite type of pesto. Our garlic patch isn’t very big so this pesto will be in short supply. Be sure to try some before its gone!

 

Peppermint

Description: Peppermint is an aromatic herb that will add a bright flavour to dishes, drinks and desserts. It has a sweet taste with a cool sensation that lingers in the mouth.

Details: Sold per bunch.

 

Description: Transform any dish from mundane to magical with our edible flowers mix! Add a splash of beauty to salads, desserts or any dish you like.

Our Edible Flower Mix includes Pansies, Violas, Nasturtiums and Calendula. Pansies and Violas have a mild, slightly neutral taste. The Calendula have a mild, slight herby taste. And the Nasturtiums have a slight sweet and peppery taste.

Calendula , which are the largest of the edible flowers, should have their petals plucked out from the head. The head of the flower should not be eaten.

 

Sugar Snap Peas

Description: Known as the "Cascadia" variety, Sugar Snap Peas have a wonderful crunchy texture, a sweet and juicy flavour and the entire pod can be eaten raw or cooked.

Details: Sold in a 1/2 lb pint

 

Garlic Scapes

Veggie Fun Fact: Garlic scapes are the tender stem and flower bud of a hardneck garlic plant. Harvesting the scapes is an integral part of garlic farming - if the scapes aren’t cut off, the plant expends its energy trying to grow its stem and flower, leaving the bulb small and flavourless. So, by eating garlic scapes, you’re doing your part in the garlic growing cycle!

Description: Garlic scapes have a juicy, somewhat asparagus-like texture. They have an incredible garlic flavour that's fresher and less fiery than the actual garlic bulb.

To prepare, break off the flower head and discard. Only eat the tender shoot stems. They can be sautéed, grilled or made into a pesto.

Details: Sold per bunch

Grown by Crooked Horn Farm, Winlaw.

 

FOOD FOR THOUGHT 🍎

Could small-scale farming transform our healthcare system?

As many of you know from our last newsletter, we recently both got sick, especially Nathan.

Getting sick had me thinking a lot about our health care system. I think it's amazing that we as a culture have decided that everyone deserves access to affordable medicine for when we fall ill. But how much of that money goes toward preventing sickness or maintaining a healthy body and mind?

I think we can all agree that the fundamentals of health are sleep, exercise and diet. The first two are free but we all need to pay for food. And if diet is at the foundation of a healthy body and mind, then shouldn't our health care system subsidize healthy food? If access to a healthy diet isn't a part of health care and the only time we get access to medicine is when we're sick, then we don't really have health care. We have sick care. Is healthy food not medicine? Does it not prevent us from getting sick?

If many of the chronic diseases we see today are largely due to a poor diet, couldn't we save an immense amount of money by simply making fresh whole foods more affordable and accessible? What if we invested some of our health care budget toward buying land for aspiring farmers, who have a passion for building fertile soil, and growing nutrients-dense produce and protein, which could then be distributed to the local community. Would that not prevent more diseases better than any pharmaceutical?

If a healthy diet is at the foundation of a healthy body and mind, then instead of spending money on building more pharmacies, maybe we should start building more farm-acies. Maybe instead of prescribing pills we should start prescribing produce and protein.

It seems to me that regenerative farmers and soil scientists should be included in our healthcare system just as much as doctors and pharmacists.

Farmers can keep us healthy while doctors treat us when we're sick. If we remove farmers and access to affordable fresh food then we're doomed to chronic sickness, which is exactly what we're seeing today.

Imagine if the situation was backwards and farmers and diet were the only legitimate part of health care. Imagine you suddenly got really sick. You were rushed to the hospital for treatment and once the doctors assessed your symptoms, they prescribed you an apple instead of antibiotics.

This is basically what our current health care system does but in reverse. We develop diseases cause by long-term nutrient deficiencies caused by a poor diet. Instead of being given access to affordable healthy food, we're giving pills to mask our symptoms or an unnecessary surgery.

I hope that the healthcare system of the future can become more holistic and inclusive. Not all diseases can be solved through diet, and not all diseases can be solved through pharmaceuticals. We need doctors, pharmacists, nutritionists, herbalist, farmers and soil scientists all working in tandem to have a true health care system.

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