|Kate Harris (left) and Kevin Leavitt
Dear MOFGA community,
"I moved to Maine because of MOFGA.” Farmers tell me this so often that I wasn't surprised to hear it from Kate Harris when I visited Farmer Kev's Organic, a MOFGA-certified organic farm in West Gardiner.
Kate moved from Pennsylvania in 2009 to participate in MOFGA's seasonal farm apprenticeship program. After working a summer at Darthia Farm in Gouldsboro, she then spent time on several other farms before enrolling in MOFGA's two-year journeyperson program. "MOFGA was essential as I learned about farming,” Kate told me.
In 2011, Kate joined with Maine-native Kevin Leavitt at Farmer Kev's Organic. Leavitt's mission is to sell affordable, organic food to people throughout central Maine. At the time, he was farming on an acre of leased land, but he wanted to grow more food. So, in 2015, the pair purchased a 30-acre farm and built four large greenhouses, three of which are heated for year-round production.
Kevin and Kate make an excellent partnership. Drawing on skills learned through MOFGA's business training programs, Kate has built a social media brand, including publishing weekly online videos for the 400-plus families who purchase food from Farmer Kev's. They also developed a home-delivery service, making their food more accessible to busy families. Kevin excels in growing quality organic food. When he has questions, he contacts Eric Sideman, MOFGA's organic crop specialist, and Dave Colson, MOFGA's director of agricultural services.
The staff at MOFGA help Kate, Kevin and hundreds of other organic growers in Maine succeed. All of us find great satisfaction in guiding and supporting farmers as they strive to deliver healthy, organic food to Maine families. Farmer Kev's Organic is one of more than 500 MOFGA-certified-organic farms and food processors.
MOFGA inspires and is training a new generation of business-savvy farmers. This is possible only because of financial support from our many members. Together we can support the work of organic producers and processors, people who, like Kate and Kevin, are determined to grow good food for Maine people.
From all of us here at MOFGA have a healthy holiday season with plenty of organic Maine-grown food!
Your year-end contribution enables MOFGA to help farmers realize their potential.
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