2015 Spring Update

Spring is in the air at Rainbow Farm as the potatoes are planted, farmers market season is upon us, and the tomatoes plants will soon be transplanted into the high tunnel. Below is a summary of our offerings/happenings for 2015.

Pastured Poultry - Chicken

We will continue to offer pastured chickens this year and will continue to raise the Cornish X Rock Cross birds.  Unfortunately we suffered a major loss in our first batch of chicks, so our first day of processing for on farm pickup will be three weeks later than originally planned.  

Our broilers are raised on pasture and receive a diet of mixed grains to supplement what they forage.  They are hormone and antibiotic free.  Most customers come to the farm to pickup their chickens fresh the day they are processed.

On the day of processing we will be selling the chickens fresh for $3.25/lb.  This is the preferred purchasing option.  If we have broilers available after processing day they will be sold frozen for $3.75/lb.  These prices are $0.25/lb more than last year, and on average a chicken will cost you $1.12 more than last year.  

Last year we started to piece chickens and will continue to do this with any extra birds we raise.  These will continue to be available frozen; prices for parts can be found on our website.  We don't expect to have pieces available until July.

Below are the processing dates for on farm pickup this season.  Let us know how many fresh chickens you would like to order on each date and we will add you to our list.  Priority is given to early orders.  Our first and last processing dates usually fill up fast, so order today!

 Processing Schedule for 2015:

·         Processing #1: June 14th and 15th

·         Processing #2: July 5 and July 6th

·         Processing #3: August 16th and 17th

·         Processing #4: September 27th and 28th

·         Processing #5: November 8th and 9th

We will continue to honor orders on good faith, without a deposit.  If you order chickens fresh, please plan to be at the farm to pick them up.

Eggs

The laying hens are one year old and laying strong.  They continue to be raised in the mobile coop that we pull around our hay fields to fertilize the grass.  We are getting around 9-10 dozen eggs a day and are able to supply two local restaurants and our loyal customers.

Eggs are still $3.50/doz on and off the farm.

Veggies

For the second year in a row market season started with a large harvest of shiitake mushrooms!  Hopefully they will make another appearance in mid summer.  In late April our lettuce mix, spinach, and arugula will be coming in and we should have plenty to last through mid June.  

Our high tunnel will be primarily devoted to tomatoes during the summer season.  We'll have an even mix of cherry and slicer type tomatoes, all delicious and all fresh!  

In July we should have our largest garlic harvest yet.  It is amazing to see how much the garlic plants grow from one day to the next.  We will also have potatoes (red, blue, and fingerling), canning tomatoes, and winter squash if all goes as planned.

Chevon – Cabrito – Goat Meat 

We haven't had any kids yet this year, but we expect a handful of does to kid in the next few weeks.  We will continue to sell live goats for you to raise or eat.  Let us know what you are looking for and we can see if we have something that fits your needs.

Pigs/Pork

Last year was our first time raising hogs.  We liked it so much that we bred our Berkshire gilts and had three sows farrow in December.  We sold the majority of those live to other farmers to raise for breeding stock and/or meat, but kept 4 to raise for our customers eating pleasure.  The sows are bred again and we expect more piglets in late June.  We will be selling these live at 8 weeks and keeping a few to raise for meat.   

Freezer pigs will be available by the half and whole.  This worked well for us and our customers last year, so we plan to stick with it.  We expect our first four to be ready to butcher in the fall and the rest early in 2016.  We are currently accepting orders for pigs so let us know what you want.

Hay

We will continue production of square bales this year for sale.  With the warm and wet April we have been having, first cut should be sometime in mid to late May.  Hay is available out of the field for a discounted price.  If this is something you are looking for let us know now so we can inform you once we know when we are going to cut. Custom haying is also available upon request.  

Miscellaneous

We will continue to sell our products at the Lewisburg Farmers Market on Saturdays, on the online Monroe Farm Market, and to several local restaurants.  If you are ever in the Lewisburg area and looking for a place to eat, we highly recommend The General Lewis Inn, Stardust Cafe, and Stella's because of their continued support and dedication to providing fresh local foods when possible.  Our products can also be found at The Greenbrier Sporting Club and hopefully a few new restaurants this year, we will keep you posted.

 Follow us online at www. rainbowfarmwv.com and "Like" us on facebook www.facebook.com/RainbowFarmWV

 Please share this letter with anyone you think might be interested in local, sustainable, high quality food.  Referrals are the greatest compliment we can receive.  Thanks for your continued support.

 

2014 Summer Update

Summer is in full swing on Rainbow Farm.  Last week we finished harvesting the last of the potatoes and garlic.  Both crops did really well this year; look for them weekly at market or ask for some when you stop by to pick up your fresh chicken. Twice a week we are picking vine ripe cherry tomatoes; we have been selling them at market and to the Lewisburg area restaurants.  The canning tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and winter squash are hanging in there, but they could really use more rain (as could the second cutting of hay).  

All the animals on Rainbow Farm are happy and healthy.  Our replacement layers started to lay in the beginning of July.  This week we are getting 3 dozen a day, but the amount increases daily and we will soon be collecting over 10 dozen a day!  The pigs are growing fast and are friendly as ever.  We have been rotating them between the woods and pasture; they continue to find great stuff to eat and mud puddles to cool off in.  Our pastured chickens (Cornish hens, fryers, and broilers) are enjoying the beetles and the grass every day out on pasture.  We still have three processings scheduled for the 2014 season with fresh chicken available for pickup on the farm for $3.00/lb.   The dates are: 

  • August 17th

  • September 28th-29th

  • November 9th-10th

Let us know if you want to place an order and we will add you to our list.  Every three weeks we process Cornish Hens (2-3.25 pounds) and have more available if you are interested in purchasing them in larger quantities.

In other news, we are proud to announce Rainbow Farm now has a logo and a new and improved website.  Check out the new site at www.rainbowfarmwv.com.  Thanks to funding provided by the Value Chain Cluster Initiative, we worked with Little Fish Design Company, out of Morgantown, WV,  on this project.  Little Fish was wonderful to work with and provided us with a great product that fit our needs.  Look for Rainbow Farm t-shirts in the near future.

We hope everyone is enjoying the summer.  Thank you for your continued support!

 

2014 Spring Update

Spring is in the air at Rainbow Farm as the pastures are greening up, apple trees are starting to bud, and goat kids are sunning themselves outside the barn. Below is a summary of our offerings/happenings for 2014.

Pastured Poultry - Chicken | All signs are pointing to the small scale exemption number for poultry processing in WV to increase in 2014. If what we hear is true, this number should increase to 20,000 birds per year. What does this mean? There is a good chance we'll be increasing our poultry operation this year, reaching out to new customer, retailers, and restaurants. It also means we'll have to be even better planners and more efficient in our operations. Don't be surprised to see a few new farm hands helping us out as well.

Our broilers are raised on pasture and receive a diet of mixed grains to supplement what they forage. They are hormone and antibiotic free. Most customers come to the farm to pickup their chickens fresh the day they are processed.

On the day of processing we will be selling the chickens fresh for $3.00/lb. This is the preferred purchasing option. If we have any broilers available after processing day they will be sold frozen for $3.50/lb. These prices are the same as our 2013 rate! 

Below are the processing dates for 2014. Let us know how many fresh chickens you would like to order on each date. Priority is given to early orders. 

  • Processing Schedule for 2014:
  • Processing #1: May 25th and 26th
  • Processing #2: July 6 and July 7th
  • Processing #3: August 17th and 18th
  • Processing #4: September 28th and 29th
  • Processing #5: November 9th and 10th

We will continue to honor orders on good faith, without a deposit. If you order chickens fresh, please plan to be at the farm to pick them up. 

Don't get too excited, but we are considering piecing some of our chickens for sale. This would only be offered frozen, and we expect the price to be astronomical (kidding, but not really). This is not only because of the extra labor to piece the bird, but because we will have the undesirable portions (necks, backs) that will be difficult to sell. So, if price is of no matter, look for pieced chicken this year. 

Eggs | In the fall we set a daily egg quota for our older layers, and when they cease to meet this they get turned into stewing hens. This batch of hens must have received the memo, because their production never dropped below the threshold. As a result we held over our layers from the past 2 years and they been putting out lots of eggs and fertilizing our fields for us.

We have replacement layers maturing, but they are still 4-5 months away from production. Expect stewing hens to be available this fall as the replacement flock takes over. We will have roughly 80 available and the price will be $2.50/lb. If you'd like to order them let us know and we'll contact you when the processing date nears.

Eggs are now $3.50/doz on and off the farm. 

Veggies | Our high tunnel will be primarily devoted to tomatoes during the summer season. We'll have an even mix of cherry and slicer type tomatoes, all delicious and all fresh! The cucumber beetles have really given us trouble with cucumbers in the tunnel, so rather than use a chemical, we're only growing cucumbers outside and replacing their spot in the tunnel with basil.

As in years past, we'll continue to offer seasonal vegetables, mushrooms and we'll be offering plenty of garlic for sale as our planting stock increases. 

Chevon – Cabrito – Goat Meat | We haven't had many kids this year for varying reasons, but we still have some goats for sale on the hoof for your eating pleasure.

If land clearing is your need, we also have "brush goats" that would love to remove your rose bush and autumn olive. 

Pigs/Pork | We currently have 4 gilts (female) and 1 boar (male). The breed is Berkshire, which is famed for its excellent eating qualities. The tentative plan is to breed these pigs and sell 

half the stock as breeding / feeder pigs and keep the other half to sell to our customers as halfs and wholes. By selling halfs and wholes we will be able to cut down the expense to our customers, and not have to worry about holding and selling individual cuts at market. Also, there are more local processors that are available for this type of work than if we were wanting to sell pork cuts. If this interests you, let us know and we'll keep you informed as these plans and the pigs progress. 

Hay | We will continue production of square bales this year for sale. Custom haying is available upon request.

Dogs | We will likely breed our Great Pyrenees female one more time before we take her out of breeding service. There has been great demand for these pups, so if you'd like a pup in the future let us know and we'll keep you informed when she is bred and expecting. 

Miscellaneous | We will continue to sell our products at the Lewisburg Farmers Market on Saturdays. The market season opens this Saturday, April 12th. Come out to support your local farmers!

Follow our progress on this page, or “Like” us on Facebook. We try to update the website regularly, but have been remiss for months. As this season gets into full swing there will be more to add and it should be updated more regularly. 

Please share this letter with anyone you think might be interested in local, sustainable, high quality food. Referrals are the greatest compliment we can receive. Thanks for your continued support. 

Lauren & Paul Brenner

Take a walk through Rainbow Farm's history.