Standards & Practices
At Headwater Food Hub and the GFC we strive to provide an ecologically conscious way to spend your food dollar. By spending what you can locally to influence the food system in a positive way, you are contributing to the health of your community, the strength your local economy and the ecology of our land and our planet. The farmers we work with use sustainable practices. Here are some of practices they employ:
Certified Organic - Farm uses organic methods and is certified.
Organic Practices - Farm uses organic methods but does not have certification. Many of these farmers have signed the NOFA (Northeast Organic Farming Association) Pledge, a non-audited version of committing to grow organically.
IPM (Integrated Pest Management) - Farm uses Cornell's IPM standards that prioritize good science and safe practices in a proactive approach to pest management. This includes many practices used by organic farmers such as crop rotation, beneficials and organic fertilizers.
Grass Fed - Primarily just for beef (can be lamb as well), Grass Fed is the most ecological way to raise cattle. True grass fed operations actually build up the land by rotating animals across different pastures, allowing them to have a diverse range of grasses while spreading natural fertilizer to regrow the pasture.
Pasture Raised - Animals have access to pasture and get to run around in fields and pastures. This is different than "free range" which just means more than a minimum square footage requirement. For chickens and ducks this means an opportunity to peck around for a variety of bugs and other great food, for pigs this means digging for roots and tubers. All of these animals also require feed, which can either be organic grain, non gmo grain, or vegetable scraps.
No Antiobiotics/Added Hormones - Animals are never given antibiotics or growth hormones.
Animal Welfare Approved - Animals are born, raised and killed in a humane, safe and environmentally conscious way, to the standards of Animal Welfare Approved
Non-GMO - None of our farmers grow Genetically Modified vegetables, fruits or grains, nor do they feed them to their animals.