Hill Family Farm

fresh from our fields to your table


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April Specials!

While it doesn’t feel like it outside right now, spring is here! As you can imagine, this is a fun, busy time of the year here on the farm. Preparing soil, planting new crops, raising new chicks and piglets and a never-ending to do list.

While we’re busy and farmers markets are still 4-6 weeks away, we have freezers full of fresh, pasture raised chicken and pork we need to keep moving. This means some great deals for the month April! Check ’em out below and then click here to place your order.

Pork Sampler ($119) – Our sampler is a great way to try different cuts and sausages without having to buy a whole or half pig. The sampler package includes:

  • 1 Boston Butt (approximately 3-3.5 lbs)
  • 6 Pork Chops (approximately 4.5-5 lbs)
  • 1 lb Bacon
  • 1 lb Jowl Bacon
  • 1 lb Bacon ends (great for cooking with)
  • 4 lbs Breakfast Sausage (mild, medium or hot)
  • 2 lbs Link Sausage (Andouille, Bratwurst, Sweet Italian or Irish Banger)

Pork Griller ($30) – Time to fire up the grill! Your choice of four 1 lb packages of links. Choices are Andouille, Bratwurst, Sweet Italian or Irish Banger. Also have Bratwursts stuffed with jalapeno and cheddar cheese for an additional $1 each.

 

Bacon and Sausage Breakfast ($20) – Can’t beat farm fresh pork for breakfast! One lb of bacon, plus 2 lbs of breakfast sausage (mild, medium or hot) will help start your day off on the right foot.

“Crock Pot” Chicken – As the name suggests, these older chickens are great for the crock pot. Slow cook them with your favorite seasonings and then pull all of the meat to use for chicken salad, quesadillas, chicken soup, etc and then be sure finish by cooking down the bones to make great tasting and healthy chicken broth.

  • 2-3 lb birds – $7 each
  • 3-4 lb birds – 10 each
  • 4+ lb birds – $12 each

In addition to these specials, we have a great selection of all of our pasture raised chicken and pork, as well as farm fresh eggs, available for you to select from. Click here to check out all we currently have available and then feel free to order online or contact us to schedule a time to come by the farm.


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CSA Means Partnership

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Many times we are asked the question, “What is a CSA?“. Our first response is usually “CSA stands for community supported agriculture”, and while that’s certainly true, a CSA is really much more than this simple definition.

A good CSA is really a partnership between the farm and its members. And, like any good partnership, this means creating an environment of trust and mutual benefits for both sides. Since launching our first CSA back in 2013, we have worked hard at trying to create a farm family feeling for our members. We see our members as playing a major role in helping us grow our farm and enlarging our farm family. In return, we work very hard to provide members with fresh, local, healthy, all-natural meat, eggs and vegetables for themselves and their families.

This year, in honor of National CSA Day (Feb 24), farms across the USA and Canada are coming together in an effort to help consumers better understand exactly what is and isn’t a true CSA. A major element in this effort is the creation of a “Partner CSA Charter” that both farms and their members commit to uphold.

We feel this charter accurately reflects what we believe a CSA should be. Therefore are happy to participate in this international effort and to share this charter with all of our members, past, present and future…

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It is up to each CSA farm and its community to build a model that suits them best and to mutually ensure that the CSA upholds the principles of this charter.

  1. Farm members buy directly from the farm or group of farms. There is no middleman.
  2. The farm provides member families with high quality, healthy, nutrient-dense, fresh and preserved, local and low fossil-fuel food or fiber, filling the share with products grown on the farm, or if purchased from other farms, clearly identified as to origin.
  3. Farm members commit to the CSA, sharing the risks and rewards of farming by signing an agreement with the CSA and paying some part in advance.
  4. The farm nurtures biodiversity through healthy production that is adapted to the rhythm of the seasons, is respectful of the natural environment and builds healthy soils, restores soil carbon, conserves water and minimizes pollution of soil, air and water.
  5. Farmers and members commit to good faith efforts for continuous development of mutual trust and understanding, and to solidarity and responsibility for one another as co-producers.
  6. Farm members respect the connection with the land upon which the CSA grows their food and strive to learn more and to understand the nature of growing food in their locale.
  7. Farmers practice safe-handling procedures to ensure that the produce is safe to eat and at its freshest, tastiest and most nutritious when delivered.
  8. CSA prices reflect a fair balance between the farmers’ needs to cover cost of production and pay living wages to themselves and all farm workers so that they can live in a dignified manner and members’ needs for food that is accessible and affordable.
  9. Farmers consult with members, take their preferences into account when deciding what crops to grow and to communicate regularly about the realities of the farm.
  10. Farm members commit to cooperation with the community of members and to fulfill their commitments to the CSA.
  11. Farmers commit to using locally adapted seeds and breeds to the greatest extent possible.
  12. The CSA seeks paths to social inclusiveness to enable the less well-off to access high quality food and commits to growing the CSA movement through increasing the number of CSAs and collaboration among them.

I realize this is a lengthy post. However I believe it’s vital when considering whether or not to join a CSA that you know exactly what we believe and how we consider our CSA a true partnership. Not all CSAs are created equal and it really does come down to… “Know your farmer, know your food.”

For more information on our CSA and how to sign up, please click here… 🙂


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Register Now For Our 2017 Summer CSA!

csa-basketsCan you believe we are heading into our fourth season of farming? I know, me either, but we are! In 2017 we will once again be offering both a summer and fall produce CSA, but with a new twist! This year we are transitioning to a modified “market style” CSA. For our CSA members, this means even more choice when it comes to each week’s share of fresh, healthy, all natural produce.

Once again we are looking for folks willing to partner with us and become a part of our farm family. (Due to our small size, the number of shares offered are limited and will sell out quickly.) To help you decide if our CSA may be right for you, here are the details to consider:

12191103_963776190346390_133286318674683352_oQ – What exactly is a “market style” CSA?

A – Our switch to a market style pick up is all about giving you more choice over the vegetables you receive each week. Instead of us assembling the basket and simply handing it to you when you arrive, you will be able to “shop” our farm stand and select the produce that best fits your needs. While there will be some limitations based on your share size and amounts of each vegetable harvested, you will basically be packing your own share with exactly what you want and like. Of course we realize part of the fun of a CSA is getting something new and learning how to prepare and enjoy eating it. To that end we will be available during the pick up window to suggest new items and offer recipes to help you introduce something new to your family.

Q – When is your CSA?

A – In 2017 we will once again be offering both a summer and fall CSA. Our summer CSA is 16 weeks long and runs from the middle of May through the end of August. The fall CSA is for 8 weeks, beginning mid-September and ending the first week of November.

Q – How often are the deliveries?

A – Shareholders will receive weekly shares as described above.

Q – Where and when are your pick up locations?

A – With the move to a “market style” CSA in 2017, all shares will be picked up at our White House farm location. Pick up days/times will be Tuesday and Friday from 3:00pm – 6:00pm. Upon registering, each member will select either Tuesday or Friday to be their pick up day for the duration of the CSA.

Q – What happens if I can’t pick up my basket at the scheduled time/location?

A – Due to our new market-style CSA, weekly pickups need to be made from 3pm-6pm on your scheduled day for the best experience. Should you be running late for any reason, please contact us ASAP and we will prepare a share to be picked up later that evening or the next day (we will hold your prepared share for up to 24 hours). If you are planning to be out of town and unable to pick up your share, we suggest having a friend or family member make your pick up that week. (Please be sure to notify us in advance so we can ensure a great experience for your substitute.) Notifying us and making arrangements for missed shares is your responsibility. Should you miss a pick up without previously made arrangements or notification, we cannot guarantee your share for that week. We are unable to give refunds or credits for missed pickups.

Q – How much produce is in a full share versus a half-share?

A – A full share is equal to approximately 1/2 of a bushel and a half-share is approximately 1/4 of a bushel. We do our best to be generous with our produce as this goes to the heart of what a CSA is. You are partnering with us and in turn, sharing in the risk/reward. Due to the fact that all-natural farming has many variables beyond our control, we cannot guarantee the quantity or quality of the produce you receive. That being said, please know we will do our best to anticipate these challenges so that you finish the year as happy, satisfied customers.

Q – What size share is best for me?

A – Great question! It really all depends on your eating habits. If you and your family eat at home most of the time and enjoy eating vegetables, a full share is the best way to go. On the other hand, if there is only 1 or 2 of you, or you enjoy eating out more often, we suggest a half-share as the better option.

Q – How much do the shares cost?

A – Summer 2017 CSA (16 weeks):

  • Full share $600 ($37.50/week)
  • Half-share $350 ($21.88/week)
  • A $50 non-refundable deposit is required at time of sign up to secure your share.
  • Payment for your share can be broken into 2 installments, with half (less your $50 deposit) due by March 1st and the balance due by May 15th.

A – Fall 2017 CSA (8 weeks):

  • Half shares only – $190 ($23.75/week)
  • Payment for your share can be broken into 2 installments, with $50 non-refundable deposit due at time of sign up and the balance of $130 due by September 1st. (Registration for our Fall CSA will begin mid-summer.)

Q – What type of produce should I expect to receive in my basket?

A – Early in the summer season you can expect to see cooler weather vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbages, lettuces (head and leaf), salad mixes, arugula, swiss chard, kale, snow peas, sugar peas, radishes, turnip greens and strawberries. As we move into summer, expect to receive sweet corn, carrots, garlic. onions, multiple varieties of beans, tomatoes and peppers, cucumbers, yellow squash, zucchini, cantaloupe, black-eyed peas, purple-hulled peas, potatoes, okra, fresh herbs and watermelon. Then moving into fall will see a return of the cool weather crops, plus sweet potatoes, beans, okra, zucchini, squash, peppers, tomatoes, winter squash and pumpkins.

helpQ – I’m afraid I will get produce I don’t know what to do with. What help will you give me?

A – We try to strike a balance between vegetable staples and those you might not think to purchase. Each week we email shareholders a list of what we expect to harvest that week and a recipe to help you try something new. Of course one of the great advantages of having a small CSA is that we all get a chance to know each other. Feel free to call, or email us with any questions.

Q – What if I decide the CSA doesn’t work for me and I’ve already paid?

A – Unfortunately, we cannot give refunds. If you are unsure about whether or not our CSA is right for your family, we encourage you not to join this year. Instead, get your feet wet so to speak by visiting us at the White House or Hendersonville Farmer’s Markets and buying fresh vegetables a la carte. If you do have to quit because of circumstances beyond your control (moving, job loss, etc), we will do our best to work with you.

Q – Ok, I’ve decided your CSA is a good fit for our family. How do I sign up?minion

A – Most awesome! To join, simply click on this link for our registration page. Complete, sign and return your registration form to us via snail mail, along with your $50 deposit. If you would prefer an online option, scan your completed registration form and return via email to thehillfamilyfarm@gmail.com. Upon receipt we will email you an invoice and you can pay securely online. Thanks!!

Should you have any additional questions, please feel free to use the form below or call me at 615-330-3153. Thanks again!


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Can You Believe It? We’re Heading Into Year 4!

When I opened Facebook this morning, the first thing I saw was a “Facebook memory” from 3 years ago. It was a blog post entitled “Why A Farm” and it was the first ever post on this website. (If you’re fairly new to following our farm journey, you may want to take a moment and check out why we decided to start a farm in the first place.)

Petunia, Pansy and Primrose, our first 3 pigs

Petunia, Pansy and Primrose, our first 3 pigs

In launching the farm, we knew very little about what it took to actually run a farm. This was especially true when it came to raising animals and building stuff. However, thanks to God’s blessings, the Internet and some great fellow farmers we’ve met and befriended along the way, we now know enough to be really dangerous!

We’ve also been blessed with meeting a lot of new folks who started out as customers and have now become friends and part of our farm family. Without a doubt this has been the most rewarding part of operating our farm. We love providing families with great tasting, healthy, all-natural, pasture-raised chicken, eggs, pork and fresh veggies.

With all that being said, I thought it might be of interest to share all that you, our friends and customers, helped us to accomplish in 2016:fullsizerender-20

  • Raised and processed 35 hogs. Quite the increase over the original 3 pictured above.
  • Raised, processed and sold approximately 3,300 lbs of pasture-raised chicken.
  • Collected, washed and sold almost 3,500 dozen eggs. For the eggheads in the crowd, that’s around 42,000 eggs, or an average of 115 eggs/day!
  • Saw our Summer and Fall Produce CSAs grow to a total of 85 memberships.
  • Participated in Farm to Table dinners at both Molipazzo and Foxland Southern Grill.
  • Partnered with Our Serenity Shop in Springfield and Nature’s Market here in White House to sell our pasture-raised chicken and pork.
  • Completed our 3rd season selling at the Hendersonville Farmers Market and were in on the ground floor launch of the White House Farmers Market and the Foxland Harbor Farmers Market.
  • Welcomed our son, Chris, on to the farm full time!

12191103_963776190346390_133286318674683352_oYes, 2016 was a great year and we thank each and everyone of you who helped make it so. Now, as we look ahead to 2017, we are even more excited about what the future holds. We hope you are as well because we simply cannot do this without our customers and farm family.

Thank you and don’t be strangers this coming year. You are always welcome on the farm!

PS – Registration for our Summer CSA is now open. Please click here for all the information, or complete the form below with any questions you may have. Thanks again!

 


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Uganda Here I Come!

Those of you who know me, probably know that God has given me a love for the people of East Africa. Since 2010 I have been blessed to go on 9 evangelistic mission trips to Rwanda (1), Uganda (2) and Kenya (6). Throw in a Christian camping ministry trip this past April to South Africa and it adds up to 10 trips across the pond.

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Now, for the first time, I have an opportunity to go on an agricultural mission trip to an orphan village in Mbira, Uganda. Our church (Long Hollow Baptist) helps to support the orphanage and this will be my 3rd trip there, but the first time I will be focused on helping the missionaries and staff enhance their farming activities.

img_0618Suffice it to say I’m both excited and nervous. Excited to be going back and seeing everyone, plus it’s a great opportunity to take what I’ve learned over the past 3 years farming here and hopefully use this experience to help the village become more sustainable. On the other hand, it makes me very nervous to be the “farming expert” on the team, given all that I don’t know!

The primary focus on this trip will be to install an irrigation system. Doing so will allow them to grow crops year img_0617round, even during their “dry” seasons. Currently they are blessed to have a good well, but no way to efficiently move the water from the well to the crops. Installing a solar pump with drip irrigation lines will help improve the yield on their existing food crops. It will also give them a chance to raise cash crops, such as strawberries, to help support the work of the orphanage and school, while at the same time saving valuable water.

Our trip is scheduled to depart January 26 and between now and then, I could use your help on a couple of things. First and foremost, I would love to have a team of prayer warriors on board with us for the trip. If you are willing to commit to pray for our trip, please email me at thehillfamilyfarm@gmail.com and I will add you to my “prayer warrior” email list. This way I can email you with specific prayer requests, both before we leave, as well as while we’re in the field.

Secondly, the cost of this trip will be approximately $2,000. The good news is this is the least expensive trip I’ve ever been on to Africa, as we got a great deal on the airfare. The not as good news is this is still not an insignificant amount of money for an “old” farmer. If you feel led to help financially with the cost of the trip, it would be greatly appreciated. To contribute, click on this link and it will take you to the Long Hollow mission page. Scroll down until you come to the Uganda section and click on the “Give Now” button next to our trip listing. From there simply follow the instructions and you can make your contribution securely online.

Thanks for taking the time to read this post. I know it’s a little more personal than what we typically talk about, but we do consider you a part of our farm family and this is what families do. They share their lives with each other.

Thanks again for being a part of ours and Merriest of Christmas’ to you and your family!


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Foxland Harbor Farmers Market

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We are excited to be a part of another farmers market launch. This one is located at Foxland Harbor Golf & Country Club in Gallatin, Tn and the final market of the year will be Thursday, November 17 from 3:00pm-6:00pm.

I know what you may be thinking…It’s going to be dark by 5pm…It might be too cold…It might be raining… Well, it will definitely be dark before it’s over, it may rain and it could be cold, but all of that won’t matter because the market is being held in their enclosed and covered pavilion!

A big thank you to our friends at Corner Spring Farm and the staff at Foxland for taking the initiative to launch this new market. And before I forget to mention, this market is a “producer only” market meaning everyone selling there either grows, raises or makes what they are selling. Know your farmer, know your food!

For more info on the market and who the vendors will be, check out the link below…

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Announcing Our New Glenbrook Delivery Option

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Have you been missing your pasture-raised, all natural pork, chicken and eggs since the Hendersonville Farmers Market closed for the year? Well, we have great news for you!

In past years, we have only sold off the farm during the fall, winter and spring, but in speaking with many of you, we realized this is not always convenient for our customers who live in and around Hendersonville, Gallatin and Goodlettsville. As a result, we are excited to announce our new Glenbrook delivery option!

Every Saturday morning we will be delivering prepaid orders to the Glenbrook Shopping Center (end near Target) from 9:00am-10:00am. To order, simply check out the Product List on our website, decide what you want and complete/submit the order form at the bottom of the page.

After receiving your order we will email your invoice which you can pay online with your credit/debit card. Then all you have to do is come to Glenbrook on Saturday between 9:00 and 10:00 to pick up your order. It’s as easy as that!

If you should have any questions, please call (615-330-3153), or email (thehillfamilyfarm@gmail.com). Thanks!