Local Food Partners
Chewonki’s kitchen attempts to source as much locally grown food as our budget and short growing season will allow. About 35% of our food dollars are spent on products that are grown or produced in Maine, including the value of meat, eggs, dairy and produce from Chewonki’s farm. The kitchen’s root cellar can store up to 4000 pounds of fresh vegetables, which feed us from September until April. Our dairy produced over 1300 gallons of milk in 2013, most of which was pasteurized and bottled for consumption in our dining hall. Additionally, some milk went to making yogurt and cheese for the dining hall and Outdoor Classroom programs.
We try to minimize the use of highly processed foods, relying on our cooks’ creativity to prepare meals from scratch including most of our bread, soups, and an assortment of dishes that both challenge and comfort our diners. Chewonki’s Outdoor Classroom and Wilderness Trips face the challenge of meeting our food systems goals without the aid of refrigeration while providing sufficient nutrition for people on the go.
Local Food Partners:
- Austin Moore: An independent farmer from Whitefield, ME, Austin supplies us with a variety of fruits and vegetables. This is a man who really enjoys growing food, and the results are astoundingly beautiful!
- Caldwell Farms: Located in Turner, ME, the Caldwells operate a family farm that supplements our beef production with their naturally raised animals. They have been in business for over 65 years.
- Crown o’ Maine Organic Cooperative: A cooperative in North Vassalboro, Maine offering primarily organic, Maine produced foods, COMOC acts as a sales outlet for many small and medium sized growers and producers in the state.
- Fresh Start Farms/Cultivating Community: The Fresh Start farmers sell us produce throughout the growing season. All of our purchases benefit the farmers, who are socially disadvantaged immigrants from Somalia, Sudan and Central America.
- Goranson Farm: This true family farm in Dresden, Maine provides us with potatoes and other root crops. They have produce available at their farm stand for an astonishing (in Maine) 11 months out of the year as well as offering farm-raised meats.
- Chewonki’s Farm: The farm is the kitchen’s second largest supplier, providing just over $52,000 worth of vegetables, beef, pork, lamb, turkey, chicken, eggs, and milk to the kitchen in 2013. Students are integrated into every aspect of production on the farm.