Our growing & sourcing practices

Farmstead Ferments is located in Albemarle county where the soil is rich in microbial life.  We grow as much of our own produce as possible on 2 acres of land and what we don’t grow we get from our local, organic farmers, friends, and neighbors.

Food systems are changing rapidly as more people are becoming aware of where their food comes from as well as all the dangers in packaged foods. Through growing food we have the opportunity to not just be people of production, but also stewards of the Earth, capable of fostering our soil’s health and increasing all the microbial life that is in it. 

We are lucky to enjoy the bountiful wealth of farming REAL food, with no chemicals, fertilizers, or pesticides, and bringing it into YOUR lives as a wonderfully crisp, fermented product in order to support a local economy and reap the benefits of what the land in our area can provide for us. 

Preserving the harvest from the seed to the jar is what we strive for by fermenting foods the way cultures have around the world for hundreds of years, bringing back to our bodies the good bacteria our gut needs to aid digestion. Not only is that good bacterium coming from the process of fermentation, but from our SOIL. The Earth and soil life is all we have and here at Farmstead Ferments, we nurture what land we can to grow fresh, delicious and crisp vegetables. 

When pest or plant damage occurs it is often something in the soil that is out of balance. Plants communicate in quiet ways. We believe that the natural world is not out to make crop farming more difficult, having to turn to heavy machinery and fertilizers. In fact it’s the opposite.

We believe that allowing the natural world to do ITS job will create LESS work for us as farmers.  Our responsibilities as farmers are to add to the natural system the ingredients necessary to support a fertile soil. Our job is not to feed the plants.  One gram of fertile soil can host as many as 1 billion bacteria and we hope to enhance the home of these bacteria using the best practices we can. 

Knowing the farmer who grows our food and being familiar in their growing practices ensures that each batch contains the finest, most fresh ingredients available. We like to call them “eco-locally grown”, meaning that we source from regional farmers who use techniques such as no or low spray, crop rotation, soil building, and other regenerative agricultural practices. 

Sourcing our ingredients as close to home and as often as possible preserves small family farms, contributes to our regions food security, reduces our dependence on fossil fuels and creates long-lasting and symbiotic relationships with folks we honor and trust who, soon enough, become part of our larger family. 

Due to the variances of soil and the seasons, harvesting schedules and techniques, time, temperature and other factors, each batch is completely unique and thus, truly artisan much like the process of winemaking. 

If you are a farmer interested in providing Farmstead Ferments with produce, please contact us. We are always looking for new collaborative partners!