October is a busy month on a first generation family pig farm in Whatcom County. We wanted to share all the fruits of our 2019 labors with you so we hosted a pumpkin patch and farm stand every Saturday in October, from 10 am -3 pm. This Saturday will be our last open house of the season, some come on out if you are in the area.

In tribute to Essex Farms in New York State I would like to call this newsletter Alluvial Farms Note Month #10. I get the Essex Farm Note Weekly, and am always amazed at what this whole diet csa - dairy - milk processing facility - educational non-profit - author - horse powered farm - on-farm butcher shop is doing. Their farm’s tagline is “One farm, all your food.” Check these guys out!

That is a segue to the Alluvial Farms reading list this month. Kristin Kimball, of Essex Farm, just published her second book, “Good Husbandry”. Chelsea Green publishing beat us to it and published “Happy Pigs Taste Better; A Complete Guide to Organic and Humane Pasture Based Pork Production” by Maine farmer Alice Percy. And finally, “The City is More Than Human; An Animal History of Seattle” is out from author Frederick L. Brown, who visited one of our farm open houses this fall.

Check out this great video that Twin Sisters Brewing made for Alluvial Farms as part of their new annual Farmer’s Grant program:

Other things that happened this month:

  • Our first boar - Pappa Ears - moved to the farm, a registered Berkshire boar from Wilderness Farms in Enumclaw.

  • Groundwork and sowing 20 acres of winterwheat/annual rye/oats/triticale in the barley field. Four acres of pig paddocks worked up and sown to winter peas/barley/field peas.

  • We finalized our contract for a 10.3 acre stream-side forest planting and our contractor started building the livestock exclusion fence to keep animals out of that area, along with a complete renovation of our barnyard and heavy use area fence. Thanks Justin and Ian of Cascade Farm and Forestry.

  • Alluvial Farms was accepted into two year long farm business accelerator program with Ecotrust in Portland called “Agriculture of the Middle Business Accelerator.”

  • After submitting a Letter of Intent to the California based Organic Farming Research Foundation, we were invited to submit a full proposal for $20,000 in research funding next year. Working title of our proposal is “Manure and Pasture Management to Reduce Swine Parasites in Pacific Northwest Organic Pastured Pork Production.

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pappa ears

and farmer Katie take a selfie…while pappa is eating grain.

Now taking orders for custom quarter, half, or whole shares for delivery mid to late January. Deadline to order for next round of custom shares is Tuesday January 7, 2020. Alluvial pork available by the cut at Cooperative Farm Stand and Bellingham Farmers Market, year round. On the menu at Camber in Bellingham and Birch in Seattle. Alluvial Farms pork available wholesale through Puget Sound Food Hub. Get in touch with us any time: alluvialfarms@gmail.com, Katie cell phone 206-992-7034, Matthew cell phone 530-717-7224.