On Sunday, March 11th, Farm Direct members, staff and Board of Directors gathered for the Annual Meeting & FDC Season Kickoff Party. This event always brings the best food. FDC members can really cook! Honey sriracha cornbread made an appearance the second year in a row (popular demand) and was a huge hit both times. Soups, salads, casseroles, delicious desserts and a general abundance of great food was on hand.
We were lucky to have special guests Pic Harrison and Sarah Lincoln-Harrison, who founded the coop 25 years ago, in attendance this year. Without them, there would be no FDC! Our main grower, Robert Lynch, co-owner & grower at Riverland Farm, Sunderland, MA was also present. He spoke about what their relationship with the FDC means to their success. He answered questions about growing practices, the challenge of new weather patterns, and the crop plans for the coming year. For the second year in a row, the FDC has given Riverland a $5,000 advance payment for produce to allow them to make improvements for the coming season. This year the funds are going toward a concrete slab to facilitate ease of navigation in one of the high tunnels used for storage and curing sweet potatoes.
Board President Monica Tecca acted as MC welcoming all and introducing each speaker. Financials were presented by FDC Treasurer Amy Imhoff & Tamara covering the year-end totals, the community aid fund, along with a discussion about our food stamp and healthy incentives programs. Julie & Tamara, co-managers for the FDC, talked about some changes to the upcoming season such as moving to a 22 week season, replacing the November Share with the Thanksgiving Share, and altering the Mushroom Share and Flower Share season lengths.
The business portion of the meeting concluded by voting in the new FDC Board of Directors. We bid farewell and offer heartfelt thanks to Lora Catalano, Tim Flatt, and Maria Adams, and welcome aboard Christine Trowbridge, Amy Piantedosi, and Leah Hancock.
We left with a renewed excitement for this community, and the mutually beneficial relationships we have with growers and producers in MA and New England.