Flint Ingredient Company started four years ago with the purchase of 9.75 acres of vacant County Land Bank property. We started selling our produce at the Flint Farmers Market a year round market. Flint Ingredient Company began with a flock of 20 chickens, 6 sheep and vegetable production in a 48 ft hoophouse. We now focus primarily on vegetable production in four hoophouses and outdoor fields producing product year round on 1.5 acres. Franklin Pleasant and Erin Caudell are the primary operators with several part-time staff joining during peak season. In December of 2015, we opened a Michigan focused grocery store named The Local Grocer where we stock our produce. Later this summer will add a mobile vegetable market (with other community partners) to bring fresh local produce into the neighborhoods of Flint.
Bill Zimmer's Food Bank Farm is a 3 acre operation located 15 minutes outside of Penn State University's campus. What started with one mans post-retirement garden, revolutionized our communities food systems by involving Penn State student volunteers and community members to produce the fresh fruits and veggies that were so desperately needed by the food banks of Centre County.
Dulzura Vineyard & Winery is located at the Historic Clark Ranch, which has been in the same family since the 1880's. Once over 1100 acres, four acres of the remaining 33 acres were planted to wine grapes in 2008, to restore the agricultural heritage of the property. The original pioneer era home and adjacent "Pickle House" have been lovingly restored. The tasting room, which opened to the public in 2014 is in the Pickle House, and artifacts of the old Ranch are on display. We make full bodied red wines including Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Zinfandel, as well as delicate whites…Viognier, Chardonnay, Dry Reisling, and an Orange Muscat Dessert wine. Grant and Sarah manage the day to operations of managing the vineyard and wine making operations, while also managing another vineyard and winery in nearby Jamul. Grant has spearheaded the marketing of "The Wineries on Highway 94", (google it) after a career in commercial cinematography, forming a cooperative group of six local wineries and a B&B with a vineyard to make marketing more affordable for the group as a whole, as well as marketing a wine destination, rather than a single winery. Based on sales since opening the tasting room in 2014, we need to increase our production by 30-50% in order to keep up with tasting room sales. Our wines have been very well received by the public, who also enormously enjoy visiting the property, sitting in the "tower" gazebo built on an abandoned water tank in the vineyard, taking in the views, and sipping a glass of wine.
GrassRoots Meats, located in southern Colorado, provides all natural pasture finished beef and lamb, as well as organic free range chicken, raised without added hormones or antibiotics. Our cattle and sheep are 100% grass fed and grass finished (never any grain), and are on pasture from the day they are born to the day they are taken to the processor, a small family owned USDA plant, where they are processed in a very humane fashion. Although we only own 115 acres, we lease about 1500 acres of land in the Texas/Oklahoma panhandle, where most of our cows stay year round. We bring our yearlings to southern Colorado each year, where we lease another 1500 acres, to finish on the lush green high mountain grasses. We presently have about 130 mama cows, and the ranching operation is managed by family members (father, mother, daughter and 4 grandchildren) and one full time employee.