Our Mission:

"We work hard and with care every day, without compromise, so we can bring health to our region, healing to our earth and love to our community by growing the absolute purest, and most sustainable food available and by selling our food in a way that provides access to all individuals in all income brackets."

Ahavah Farm is the ONLY locally recognized Regenerative Farm in the region and the ONLY Pay-What-You-Can-Afford farm in the region. Go to www.ahavahfarm.com to learn more about our farm or click here to be added to our mailing list and "Like" us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/ahavahfarm

Monday, August 31, 2015

Our First Home-School Day!

Today was our first "Home-School Day."  What fun it was too, and it seemed that everyone really enjoyed themselves. I know we did!  Everyone got to feed the alpacas, play with the chickens and learn about the farm and about different vegetables.  We ate cherry tomatoes, picked a carrot and a beet and got to collect some duck and chicken eggs.  Then we cooked it all up and ate all of our harvest.

We can't wait for our next Home-School Day!

See some of the pictures below:

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Documentary On Our Farm! - "A Labor of Love."

Check out the documentary featuring our farm:  A Labor of Love by Albergo Twin Productions:

Your Produce Is So Expensive!

"Your produce is so expensive!"

Is it?  Yes.  We admit, our produce IS a little more expensive than most.  However, there are a couple of reasons for this beyond our sustainable methods, our all-heirloom produce and beyond organic nutritional value, which I will discuss here.

First, it is important to take note of the market that we are dealing with here.  For instance, are we talking about expensive for Colorado?  For Denver?  For a CSA?  For Colorado Springs?  Compared to the Grocery Store?  For the first three, Colorado, Denver or CSA the reality is that our produce is not priced high at all - especially for Denver and especially for a CSA (who receive up to a 35% discount).  We could, therefore, sell our produce exclusively to Denver and by doing so raise our prices an additional 25% or more.  Believe me, the price for Farmer's Market produce in Denver, even for NON-ORGANIC produce, is exorbitant.  We could also get out of the CSA business all together and only sell at Farmer's Markets.  But that's not why we are in this business.  We love what we do.  We have a passion for growing (and feeding people) pure, sustainable food, and beautiful food. We also love you, our customers.  We love the community.  We love being a part of something bigger than us and we love doing something that matters.

So what matters?  Well, for starters, getting pure, local, fresh food into the bellies of those that either can't afford it, or don't have access to it.  Colorado Springs, and especially the surrounding area of El Paso County is a food desert.  The definition of a "Food Desert" according to the USDA is as follows:

"1. They qualify as "low-income communities", based on having: a) a poverty rate of 20 percent or greater, OR b) a median family income at or below 80 percent of the area median family income; AND
2. They qualify as "low-access communities", based on the determination that at least 500 persons and/or at least 33% of the census tract's population live more than one mile from a supermarket or large grocery store (10 miles, in the case of non-metropolitan census tracts)." (http://apps.ams.usda.gov/fooddeserts/foodDeserts.aspx)

Below is a map of El Paso County.  All the areas shaded in Pink are Low-Access Areas

Below is a similar map of El Paso County reflecting Low-Income Areas.

Below is a combined image:  Both Low-Income and Low-Access.

Now, one must keep all of this in perspective.  Unfortunately, when placed in context and kept in perspective, it gets much worse.  These definitions by the USDA do not include "Local Food."  They also do not include "Organic" or "Pure," "Fresh" food.  Simply stated, the USDA defines these deserts as access to a "Supermarket or Large Grocery Store."  The truth is that only 1-2% of the food in El Paso County is local.  Of that 1-2%, a much smaller portion is considered "Organic" and an even much lesser portion is considered "Pure."

So what am I getting at?  I am trying to explain the things that matter.  The reason for our existence as a small, local, "pure-food" farm in El Paso County is so that we can make a difference in people's lives.  For those that can afford the food and have access to it, does it make a difference? Well, according to our many customers and the feedback we receive, yes it does make a difference.  But what about all those people that are on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits that, simply-put, cannot afford access to healthy food?  We aren't talking about lazy bums and deadbeat dads that are so often the stereotypical SNAP recipient.  Do those exist?  Sure.  Will we help them too?  Of course.  But for those of you who struggle with this idea, we are talking about the working poor.  Say what you want about those on SNAP benefits, but the truth is, many of them are the hardest working individuals in this country!  Often, they are blue-collar workers who wake up at the break of dawn and end their day just in time to kiss their children to bed at night.  These are people who are struggling to feed themselves and their families the basics, never mind actually healthy food, in an economy where you have individuals with MBA degrees working two minimum-wage jobs (read the book "The Working Poor", by David Shippler), with two or more children at home, and are barely making ends meet.  Want more?  Watch the movie "A Place at the Table" to learn about these hard working individuals who are doing everything they can to feed their children, but are living in a food desert just like ours.

I digress.  Here's my point...

We, Ahavah Farm, double all SNAP benefits.  We also give away literally hundreds of dollars of food per week.  We do have "Suggested" prices that may be higher than the grocery store or even some other farms, but we also allow those who are struggling to pay what they can and take what they want and need.  When you purchase food from Ahavah Farm you are doing more than paying for Sustainable agriculture, no-till farming that cares for our soil and our environment, beyond organic growing methods, 100% heirloom produce which means a better taste and higher nutritional content and supporting a small, local farm.  When you purchase food from Ahavah Farm you are also making a difference.  Yes, our prices are a little higher for those that can afford it, but by your purchases we are able to provide pure food to those that need it the most.  It might not be much, and we may sound a little idealistic, but it is something.  By the end of the season we will have given away hundreds of pounds of food and thousands of dollars of irreplaceable nutrition because of you!

So next time you think "Boy, your food is really expensive," keep in mind what you are really paying for and also who you are feeding through your support.

Support Our Local Food Desert and Those Who Are Trying To Do Something About It

Colorado Springs is a Food Desert, where only 1-2% of the food is local. One of the reasons we are in existence is so we can do the right thing and bring Beyond Organic, Pure food to the area and to those who don't have access or can't afford it. Seeds Community Cafe is an organization that helps us obtain this goal through our food donations. Seeds offers a "Pay What You Can" option using food mostly donated from local area farms like ours. We love Seeds and we love Lyn (Founder). We ask you to help Seeds Community Cafe have a greater reach in feeding people fresh, local, pure food. By doing so, you will also be helping Ahavah Farm have a greater mission by extending our food to those who need it the most.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Nutritional Value is NOT the Only Reason to Purchase Pasture-Raised Eggs

Nutritional Value of Pasture-Raised, organic fed eggs are not the only reason to by them. Knowing your farmer. Knowing how your animals are treated. Knowing what your animals are fed is just as important as the added nutritional value of the product. Watch the disturbing video below and then support your local farmer who treats their animals with love and care.

Beware of very disturbing images.

Oh, and in case you were interested...the nutritional value is MUCH better!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

It Was Bound To Happen...

We are officially on Facebook.  Can't say I am happy about that. However, that's the way of the world for now, and if we want to reach the masses, it's the way to go.  Please check us out and like us!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Wow it's been busy around here...

It's been awhile since we have posted on this blog...

It's just been so insanely busy around here to say the least, the last thing I have time to do is post on the blog.  Let's see, we are prepping and planting for all the fall and winter produce, we finished our 80 foot greenhouse, we are expanding our 1/2 acre garden, we are expanding our egg business and we just got 10 Alpacas!  All this, in the absolute height of the season...yeah, I'd say we are busy.  This is how our days go:

Our typical day lately goes from somewhere around 4 or 5am to about 8 or 9pm.  We start the day by opening the greenhouse and rotating the irrigation for both the greenhouse and the garden (all 4 zones).  We then go let the chickens out, fill their feed and water them.  Then we do the same with half of the ducks (long story) and we do the same with the other chicken coop.  We rinse out the duck pools and fill them while we are at it.  Then we go back into the greenhouse and hand-pollinate every single squash flower.  Then we let the other ducks out.  Then our real work begins and the rush doesn't end until lunch time (if we are lucky) and then dinner and then on to about 8 or 9pm.  The rush is a mixture of harvesting and washing produce, weeding, thinning, collecting eggs, tearing out old plants, prepping beds, re-seeding, re-planting, rotating irrigation, spreading compost etc., etc.  Then we mix in the projects:  picking up supplies at the store, expanding our garden, checking on the bees, repairing and putting up fencing in all the paddocks, building the greenhouse, walking the fence, performing repairs, assembling and delivering shares, talking to customers and on and on it goes until almost bed time.  Oh, I forgot to throw in here the other "daily" stuff we have to do - like homeschooling our four children and taking care of their needs throughout the day.  Thankfully though, a few of them are a big help!  I also forgot to mention my real job.  All day long I am interrupted with phone calls, e-mails and texts...that's when I am not at work and in the garden.  Otherwise, I am spending the rest of my time at work, so we have to do all the above mentioned things in my "spare time."  We make a TO-DO list every night, and every night the list just seems to get longer and longer.  Add in the farmer's market, the responsibilities for our new Alpacas, marketing and other "business stuff," prepping and building new shelters and coops and you can see why we haven't posted in a while.

I think we need a vacation!