Mainebiz reports that Maine 2010 maple syrup production was down 22% from last year’s high of 395,000 gallons.
Archive for the ‘Farming’ Category
Wednesday’s Portland Daily Sun includes a report on the Monday Farmers Market,
Hopes are high that a new Monday farmers’ market in Monument Square can succeed where others have failed, including an effort last year that fizzled after only one vendor showed up.
This year is doing better, thanks in large part to a market manager being in the right place at the right time.
and a column from Natalie Ladd on her inherited love of dessert which is peppered with recommendations on where to go for a good final (or only) course.
Dessert is a subject I take very seriously, and it requires great restraint for me pass it up. As a diner, it’s often the shining highlight or disappointing deal breaker of any meal. As a restaurant person, it’s a great way to build up the average check by up-selling and padding the check, resulting in more money for house and server.
The counter service restaurant is sure to give both ventures a boost. While anyone can walk in and purchase off the menu, those who plan to be regulars may want to consider investing in a community-supported kitchen membership. When members dine at the cafe, their meals are deducted from the paid-in-advance balance, and they receive a 10 percent discount.
“But then we also really just like providing for our own needs,” Davis said. “We make our own maple syrup and we brew our own beer and we’ve smoked our own bacon. We cut our own wood. We’re not the kind of people who just sort of sit around. We like to be active and doing things, so we thought this would be a good project for the summer.”
The paper also published a survey of the food and drink to be had at last nights celebration/commiseration parties held by gubernatorial candidates.
Some candidates went frugal – opting to gather in the campaign office and munch on chips – while others spared no expense at posh destinations with lavish drinks and hors d’oeuvres.
Columnist Crash Barry has penned a feature article for the new issue of The Bollard about working at Nezinscot Farm, a biodynamic farm in Turner, Maine.
Raw garlic oil, alive and intense, overwhelmed my taste buds, scorching my tongue and the insides of both cheeks with a Jalapeno heat. I chewed the clove a couple more times, gulped and swallowed. I felt an electric charge pulse from my brain to my toes, from stomach to fingertips. My body radiated a throbbing, rhythmic energy that moments before had been buried beneath the fertile soil of the Nezinscot Farm, atop a hill overlooking a river in the western Maine town of Turner.
There have been several food articles in the Portland Daily Sun this week. On Tuesday the newspaper reported on the collaboration between Sparrow Arc Farm and Bar Lola on a CSA for the central Maine farm in Portland,
This means the impending CSA will include a wide, eclectic sampling of the 300 varieties of veggies grown at Sparrow Arc, including heirloom tomatoes and cornichons, a type of baby pickling cucumber. “We will be able to offer a really mind blowing amount of veggies to our CSA,” said Linehan.
on Wednesday there was a profile/history of Micucci’s.
Miccucci Grocery Company launched in 1949 and was located in the trunk of Leo and Iris Micucci’s car. Licensing and the official launch came a couple of years later in 1951 so the family splits the difference and says the company began in 1950. From Middle Street to Commercial then to its current home, Leo and Iris moved the location but kept the name.
and on Thursday there was a report on the soon-to-open Bayside Bowl,
A draft menu offered a promise of relatively high-end food for $15 and less. Bayside Bowl plans to serve Focaccioa bread pizzas, mini chicken chimichangas, veggie stir fry, garden burgers as well as traditional hamburgers and cheeseburgers, crab and lobster cake dinners, reuben sandwiches, fish, grilled rib eye, roasted lemon chicken, cocoanut curry chicken poppers, grilled wings, fries, hush puppies, and a variety of kids’ dishes and desserts.
The Natural Foodie column in today’s Press Herald has a report on the new Monday Farmers Market in Monument Square. The article includes a full list of the food vendors slated to participate.
Last Monday, there were nine vendors in the square, but as the season progresses, the market will grow to include more than 20 farms.
The market’s expansion to three days comes as a result of the number of farmers who wanted a spot at either the Saturday or Wednesday markets and have been languishing on the waiting list.
Saturday’s Press Herald included an article on the early May frost will impact this year’s Maine apple crop.
Some Maine apple orchards have lost virtually their entire crops two weeks after being hit by a killer frost.
Although many blossoms and early apples appeared to have survived the freeze that began the morning of May 10, they are now wilting and falling to the ground in huge numbers.
Stacey Cramp has published photos from her visit to Fishbowl Farm and a wild food foraging field trip with Tom Seymour.
Shopping at the farmers’ market is all well and good, but you will appreciate the produce even more if you witness the planning and hard work that goes into each pea you pop into your mouth. If you get the chance, visit one of your farmers on his/her turf and see exactly what goes into growing and cultivating those gorgeous veggies you are eating. I’m guessing they’d be happy to have you take a look around. We’re very grateful to Chris for generously spending his time educating us about a small piece of organic farming.
The Munjoy Hill News has published a brief report on the new Monday Farmers Market.
Veggies, frozen meats, flowers, cupcakes and much more can now be bought at the new Monday Farmers’ Market on Monument Square – pretty much anything you can purchase at the Wednesday Farmers’ Market you can now buy on Monday if you can’t wait until Wednesday.
Sparrow Arc Farm and Bar Lola are teaming up to bring a CSA to Portland. Chef Hernandez from Bar Lola and Matthew Linehan from Sparrow Arc announced the CSA tonight when the pair spoke at the Food+Farm showing of the movie Ingredients. The film showcased the partnership between farmers and restaurants, and Bar Lola and Sparrow Arc have worked together for several year.
Now they’re taking that relationship one step further with Bar Lola serving as the in-town pick-up point for the CSA. The CSA will operate weekly starting July 8 and through to Thanksgiving. For more information about CSA shares email Sparrow Arc Farm at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (207)-948-6105.
For additional reporting see the June 1 article in the Portland Daily Sun.
The Maine Sunday Telegram interviewed several farmers about how the early warm weather is impacting when they plant.
Spring arrived three weeks early this year, and it is driving some farmers a little bit crazy. Bamford and some other adventurous growers are throwing out all the tried and true farming maxims and betting one of the earliest, warmest springs in memory will continue.
They are hoping that they will be able to deliver strawberries, swiss chard and even corn to markets a little bit earlier than the competition.
“When I plan my restaurant’s menu, it’s not just my choices going into the dishes, it’s the farmers’,” Corry says. “It’s their menu as much as mine.”
Today’s was opening day for the Wednesday market and Delicious Musings was there with camera in hand to capture the start of the season.
I did not realize how much I had been aching for the return of a weekly outdoor farmers’ market until I saw a post this morning on Facebook by the Portland Maine Farmers’ Market it would be returning to Monument Square today. Let the weather be as fickle as it likes, let the wind blow, the temps rise and fall, and rain away (I should add snow since flakes were reported over the weekend)…The farmers are in town with their goods, bees are buzzing about, black flies (ugh) have set up a welcome center at your nearby pond, and summer is imminent.
See additional reporting on the Farmers Market in the April 27 edition of the Portland Daily Sun.
When it was built three years ago, the company’s first 24-acre greenhouse in Madison was already the largest building in Maine. This second connected greenhouse, completed last year, brought the total area under glass to some 42 acres, or roughly the size of 32 football fields. Even in the depths of winter, a million tomatoes ripen indoors to harvest each week, snipped from their vines by workers in T-shirts and shorts.
Today’s Press Herald includes an article about this year’s maple syrup season,
Warmer-than-normal days and cold nights are combining to create ideal conditions to get maple syrup season off to one of its earliest starts ever, said Keith Harris of Harris Farm in Dayton.
a piece about next week’s Incredible Breakfast Cook-off,
The Porthole’s eggs Florentine, smothered in a smoky bacon cream sauce, will be the chefs’ entry into the Incredible Breakfast Cook-off March 5 at the Sea Dog Brewing Company in South Portland. Their version of the breakfast classic has “always been a hit” with customers, no matter where they worked, Cross said.
and a listing of all the vegetarian options to be found on the Maine Restaurant Week menus.
Tuesday’s Portland Daily Sun hus published reports on the early start to the maple syrup season,
“We’re usually getting started to get ready to go tapping this time of year, but normally the sap is not ready to run for another week or so,” said Lyle Merrifield, president of the Maine Maple Producers Association, whose family was out gathering sap Monday at Merrifield Farm. “It seems like the weather changed so quick on us that we’re tapping; things are ready to run right now.”
and on new taps that are gentler to the trees,
In a shift from the traditional spout size of 7/16-inch diameter, producers like Lyle Merrifield of Merrifield Farm in Gorham have advanced to a spout that fits a 5/16-inch hole. The reason is to extend the life of trees.
This year’s Maine Maple Sunday is scheduled to take place March 28.
According to a blog post on Eat Maine Foods, MOOMilk, a new brand of organic milk sourced from Maine farms, will start appearing on store shelves this weekend.
Produced by 10 Maine family organic dairy farms in Washington, Aroostook, Penobscot and Kennebec Counties, the milk will be trucked by Schoppee Milk Transport of Holden to Smiling Hill Dairy in Westbrook for processing, then distributed by Oakhurst Dairy of Portland and Crown O’ Maine Organic Co-op of Gardiner. That makes it the only organic milk available in Maine that is produced, trucked, processed and distributed exclusively by Maine family businesses.
Farmfresh for ME, she says, will be targeting consumers in the Bangor area, as well as in Downeast Maine. “I know that a lot of the consumers we’ve talked to can’t get to the farmers’ market during the hours that it’s open, or want to see what’s available online in the comfort of their own home, so I think that interest has grown.”
Today’s Press Herald has a report from the 69th Annual Maine Agricultural Trades Show
The annual event brings together a mix of agricultural producers: grass growers, maple syrup makers, alpaca breeders, woodland owners and florists. The crowd is equally diverse, with attendees as likely to be sporting dreadlocks and hand-knit organic woolens as John Deere caps and Carhartt work boots.
an interview with Dr. Peter Knight from True North in Falmouth on how to eat right
“With kids, I find that parents are afraid to change things in their kids’ diets,” Knight said.
The fear, he said, is based on a mistaken belief that little Johnny “won’t eat anything else.” There’s typically some validity to this statement, but it can be overcome by introducing the child to a wide variety of whole foods, allowing the child to select food at the farmers market, and gardening together as a family.
“Tell that writer that indoor barbecue is an oxymoron,” he said. “There is no such thing”
We laugh. We both know that Davis is correct. But Davis doesn’t live in Maine, where the long months of winter can make true-blue barbecue fans go into withdrawal.
Today’s Portland Daily Sun includes an article about expanding artisanal cheese industry in Maine.
Eric Rector, president of the guild, said the Maine Cheese Guild is working with many cheesemakers as business booms.
“In Maine, artisan cheese movement is growing by leaps and bounds,” he said. “We’re winning awards all over the place, nationally.”
The long awaited launch of Portland Cooks—a multimedia blog by “Radio Host, former urchin-diver, ex-restaurant lackey, and fearless promoter of the hard-working people in the local food industry” John Dennison—took place today with a piece on Sunset Farm Organics. Sunset provides organic greens throughout the winter to some of Portland’s best known restaurants from their greenhouses in southern Maine.
Today’s Press Herald includes an article on new rules that would regulate small scale chicken farms
[Organic farmer Rick] Stanley is among a number of small poultry producers planning to speak against the proposed rules at a hearing at 10 a.m. today in Room 208 at the Cross Office Building in Augusta. The issue highlights how the booming demand for locally grown and produced food can collide with the regulatory framework set up to ensure its safety.
The newspaper also reprinted a piece from the Bangor Daily News about the Maine scallop industry
“When the water is warm, they swim right through the water like Pac-Man,” he said, referring to the classic video game. “This year, I’ve seen quite a few small scallops. You know, little guys, 1-inch, 2-inch scallops. I’ve heard from other people around the state that they’re seeing some small scallops, which we haven’t seen in many, many years.
“I hope it bodes well for the future,” he added.