in good taste

Wendy Banks, owner of Wendy?s Mobile Market. Peter, Dianne and Tim Dowling of Doublejay Farms.

Farming Philosophy

By Josephine Matyas Photos by Tim Forbes

How locally sourced meats help to grow the farm-to-table movement

S upporting local farmers means more than buying the beets and carrots they pull from the ground, or the apples and pears they pick from the trees. It means contributing to a network of food security, where family farms can thrive, individual farmers can practise their craft and consumers can celebrate the taste difference on their dinner plates. The newest addition to this farm-to-table movement? Locally sourced meats. Wendy Banks, owner of Wendy?s Mobile Market in Lyndhurst, started her delivery service to individuals and restaurants because she saw a need to connect producers with consumers. ?I care very much about where our food is coming from. I am sixth generation on our family farm, and I saw farms around me disappearing. It struck a nerve ? that this could be the end of how I grew up, knowing where my food came from. I knew we needed to focus on building a sustainable food system.? Like many other farmers, Banks finds customers want to know how the animals were grown and raised. ?Smalland medium-size farms care about what they do.? This philosophy is echoed by Sally Bowen, one of four co-owners of Topsy Farms, a sheep and lambing operation on Amherst Island. ?Our animals are cherished,? says Bowen. ?Every herding dog is patted every day. Every sheep is checked every day. We care about the well-being of the animals and that translates into great tasting meat. They haven?t been packed into barns or feedlots. They are living and raised ideally ? nurtured, well fed, naturally raised outdoors in a clean environment where they are eating grass and drinking mama?s milk. We don?t force them ? we follow the natural breeding seasons.? At Haanover View Farms between Napanee and Belleville, first-generation farmer Oliver Haan began with an agriculture degree majoring in livestock, dabbled with pigs and eventually expanded to include grass-fed beef and meat rabbits. With a relatively small herd of 100 28 kingston life | | January/February 2017

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