This past weekend, I attended the conference of Food Secure Saskatchewan in Moose Jaw. One session on driect marketing and CSAs (which stands for Community Supported Agriculture) featured three interesting local food enterprises:
Farmgate Food - Mark and Lynn Lane sell organic chickens, lamb and pork rasied in the great outdoors without hormones, antibiotics and additives. Also wool quilt batts, sheep skins and knitting yarn. Place orders by email. Mark delivers into Regina.
"Most consumers choose our product for the taste, not because it's good for the environment." - Mark
Hi-Low Angus - Dan and Erin Howell direct market Angus beef raised on their farm at Lumsden. Their 12-year-old daughter Cassidy is raising katahdin lamb. They sell at the Regina Farmers' Market. For every ten customers, they give a pound of beef to charity.
"As a farmer, it's been extremely gratifying." - Dan
The Green Ranch - Tim and Carla Schultz are growing all manner of vegetables on their farm at Osage, as well as livestock. They sell at the Regina Farmers Market and make regular deliveries into Regina. Customers pay up front, then place weekly orders via the website, where Tim posts each week's offerings.
"Marketing is my passion, and I want to help other farmers sell their products who aren't into marketing themselves." - Tim
They say the biggest obstacles to the growth of their businesses include the small-producer limit of 999 chickens and the lack of certified inspected abbatoirs in their area.