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Pledge Your Support for Northeast Organic Family Farms

The loss of local family farms is not a new story for the northeast. However, in the fall of 2021, 89 organic farms across Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York received the devastating and unexpected news that Horizon Organic, the processor committed to purchasing their milk, would terminate contracts within 12 months (now extended to 18 months). Soon after that, 46 organic family farms in eastern New York received similar notices from their processor Maple Hill Creamery.

The 135 termination notices placed a large percentage of the region’s organic dairy farms in financial jeopardy and created an urgent wake-up call for our region. Unless we take swift action, our hard-working family farms – and the promise of a climate-positive, secure food system supported by their organic methods – will face dire consequences. While saving these 135 at-risk farms is the most urgent and immediate crisis, we recognize an equally vital need to address the systemic conditions that have put these farms at risk. Simply put, we all must act to prevent farms from ever being placed in this position again.

First Step to Address the Crisis
The first step in creating market stability and ensuring the future of the Northeast’s organic dairy farms is to increase the demand for the organic milk produced in our region. When consumers vote with their dollars and purchase from the brands committed to sourcing organic milk from our region, it sends a strong message that we value our local organic farms and want them to stay in business.

You can help by taking a simple pledge stating that you’ll purchase from the brands committed to our region’s organic family farms.

Northeast Organic Family Farm Partnership Region

The Northeast has a unique set of challenges for producing and marketing organic milk. Seasonal conditions and distances from major grain production force farmers to constantly innovate and adapt to huge swings in supply costs. The region is blessed with an extraordinary group of committed, often multi-generational family farmers and processors who work tirelessly to provide organic dairy products.

This map shows the region affected by the recent dairy contract terminations and the larger organic market that is critical to helping keep northeast farms economically viable.

If you live within this region, you can play a crucial role in ensuring the future of Northeast organic dairy for generations to come.
 


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We all have the power to help!

Simply by pledging to purchase a portion of our weekly dairy items from any participating organic brands, we can all help ensure the survival and success of organic dairy farms in the Northeast.

Joining is simple! Just fill out the pledge below to demonstrate your commitment to supporting the brands that use milk from our northeast organic family farms. Large numbers of pledges are the most powerful way to persuade retailers to increase the amount of northeast organic family farm milk products they carry. Make your purchasing power count by pledging today!

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Cheese
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Milk
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Yogurt
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Cottage Cheese

Our Northeast Organic Family Farms Need and Deserve Your Support

Your pledge will make all the difference

This partnership was created to encourage ALL stakeholders in the food system—consumers, retailers, and vendors—to support and safeguard our region’s organic family farmers.

The stunningly simple secret to our modern food system is that “consumers rule.” Grocers, restaurants, cafeterias, and even online retailers always try to obtain and sell whatever products we consumers seek. So, when large numbers of consumers demand increased availability of certified organic products from northeast family farms, retailers and vendors will work hard to offer those products.

Your pledge to purchase one-quarter of your weekly dairy items from the brands that buy their milk from northeast organic family farms sends a clear signal to food outlets that you want them to prioritize these farmers’ products.

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Why Organic Family Farms Matter

(And why this partnership was created)

Family farms reconnect us to the land and each other. They provide our communities with beautiful open spaces, abundant wildlife habitats, and rural charm. We pick fruit in their fields and orchards and pet their cows at county fairs. Family farms remind us where our food comes from—and how good it can taste.

When you pledge to buy the products from our region’s organic family farmers, you are not just helping to keep these farms financially viable. You are supporting true Environmental and Health Heroes. Moreover, you are helping to support a fairer, more stable agricultural market, which keeps thousands of small family farms in business and thriving. In fact, organic milk prices are traditionally more stable than the conventional dairy market, so organic farmers often have an easier job of covering production costs. That means they have a better chance of keeping the lights on at the farm and the cows out in the pasture, where they belong.


The Brands You Should Support

These Brand Partners are committed to sourcing the majority of their milk from organic farms in the northeast. Support local, organic dairy farmers when you purchase from these brands.



Balfour Farm Pittsfield, ME
Fresh cheeses, cave aged raw milk cheeses, yogurt

Contact

Where to Buy
Berle Farm Hoosick Falls, NY
Cheese, yogurt, milk

Contact

Where to Buy
Buttercup Mountain Farm Orange, VT
Raw Milk

Contact

Where to Buy:

Farm store

Butterworks Farm Westfield, VT
Yogurt, cream, kefir, buttermilk

Where to Buy
Callie's Creamery Peterborough, NH
Yogurt

Contact

Where to Buy
Champlain Valley Creamery, LTD Middlebury, VT
Cheese

Contact

Where to Buy
Chase Hill Farm & Creamery Warwick, MA
Milk, cheese

Contact:

978-544-3752
chasehillfarm@gmail.com


Where to Buy:

Farm store

Donegan Family Farm Charlotte, VT
Raw Milk

Contact

Where to Buy
Earthwise Farm & Forest Bethel, VT
Raw Milk

Contact:

info@earthwisefarmandforest.com


Where to Buy

Farm store

Grace Pond Farm Thomaston, ME
Milk

Contact

Where to Buy
Hawthorne Valley Farm Ghent, NY
Milk, yogurt, cheese

Contact

Where to Buy
Kiss the Cow Barnard, VT
Milk, ice cream

Contact

Where to Buy
Larson Farm & Creamery Wells, VT
Yogurt, gelato, butter, milk

Contact

Where to Buy:

Farm store

Meadowsweet Farm Hawley, MA
Raw milk

Contact:

413-412-3543


Where to Buy:

Farm store

Miller Farm/Miller Milk LLC Vernon, VT
Milk

Contact:

(802) 988-6455
millermilkllc@gmail.com


Where to Buy:

Brattleboro Food Co-op, Putney Food Co-op, local farm markets, Stonyfield products

Misty Brook Albion, ME
Milk, half & half, cream

Contact:

207-437-4719
MistyBrookOrganicFarm@yahoo.com


Where to Buy
Neighborly Farms Randolph, VT
Cheese

Contact

Where to Buy:

Farm store and throughout NE

Nezinscot Farm Turner, ME
Cheese

Contact

Where to Buy
Organic Valley - CROPP Cooperative All NE
Milk, cream, cheese, butter

Contact

Where to Buy

National distribution

Rogers Farmstead Berlin, VT
Milk, yogurt, cheese

Contact

Where to Buy

Co-ops and farm stores in VT

Sidehill Farm Hawley, MA
Yogurt, cultured sour cream, cheese

Contact:

413-339-0033
info@sidehillfarm.net 


Where to Buy
Stonewall Farm Keene, NH
Milk, ice cream, butter, cheese

Contact

Where to Buy

Farm store, Stonyfield products

Stony Pond Farm Fairfield, VT
Milk, cheese

Contact

Where to Buy
Stonyfield Organic Londonderry, NH
Yogurt, milk, cream

Contact

Where to Buy

National distribution

Strafford Organic Creamery Strafford, VT
Milk, ice cream

Contact:

info@straffordcreamery.com


Where to Buy
Straw's Farm Newcastle, ME
Milk

Contact:

strawsfarm@gmail.com

The Grey Barn Chilmark, MA
Cheese

Contact

Where to Buy

Farm store

The Milkhouse Monmouth, ME
Milk, yogurt

Contact:

mainemilkhouse@gmail.com


Where to Buy
Tide Mill Organic Farm, LLC Edmunds, ME
Milk

Contact

Where to Buy
von Trapp Farmstead Waitsfield, VT
Cheese, milk

Contact:

(802) 496-6100
info@vontrappfarmstead.com


Where to Buy

Farm store, milk CSA
Online from Jasper Hill Farm

White Orchard Farm Frankfort, ME
Milk

Contact:

207-223-5525
12browncows@gmail.com


Where to Buy:

Farm store, Bangor Natural Living Center

Wolfe's Neck Center for Education and the Environment Freeport, ME
Milk

Contact:

bgotschall@wolfesneck.org


Where to Buy:

Farm store

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The Partnership Story

Sometimes, it takes a crisis to wake us up that something needs to be done. Stonyfield co-founder and former long-time CE-Yo Gary Hirshberg came up with an idea for a region-wide partnership between consumers, large and small dairy processors, retailers, restaurants, school lunch programs, college cafeterias, and of course, our region’s hard-working organic family farmers. The idea is to enlist tens of thousands of northeast consumers, and retail and institutional customers, in a partnership that will provide stable, long-term demand for products made with the milk produced in our region’s organic family farms. Protect and ensure their future by joining as a partner in this effort today.

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Partnership Board of Directors

Peter Allison

Farm to Institution New England

Diane Bothfeld

Vermont Agency of Agriculture

Abbie and Leon Corse

Vermont Organic Dairy Farmers

Claire Eaton

Director, Natural Resource Markets & Economic Development. Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry

Gary Hirshberg

Founder and Chair of the Northeast Organic Family Farm Partnership; Co-Founder and Chief Organic Optimist at Stonyfield Farm

Britt Lundgren

Director of Organic and Sustainable Agriculture at Stonyfield Organic, NH

Annie Watson

Maine Organic Milk Company and Dairy Farmer

Eric Ziehm

New York Organic Dairy Farmer

Board of Advisors

Michael Brown

Regional Pool Manager for CROPP Cooperative, ME

Erbin Crowell

Executive Director of the Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA)

Jesse Laflamme

Former CEO and Owner of Pete and Gerry’s Organics, LLC

Rose Forrest

Sustainability Coordinator, Massachusetts & Rhode Island Universities, Sodexo, Inc. , RI

Ed Maltby

Executive Director, Northeast Organic Dairy Producers Alliance , MA

Peter Miller

Organic Dairy Farmer and Processor, Miller Family Farm, VT

Albert Straus

Founder and CEO, Straus Family Creamery, CA

We're Hiring!

Join our growing team and work at the intersection of sustainable agriculture, consumer marketing, dairy supply chains, and advocacy in the Northeast.

Open Job

Field Coordinator

The Field Coordinator is an energetic self-starter with overall responsibility for recruiting, onboarding, and supporting grocers, institutional cafeterias, and restaurants in becoming Retail Partners.

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Donate

The Northeast Organic Family Farm Partnership is an educational project affiliated with the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, a 501(c)3 Charitable Non-Profit Organization. Our efforts to educate and build a region-wide commitment to helping to keep the northeast’s organic family farmers financially supported and viable depends completely on the generosity of our donors. All donations are tax deductible. Please donate whatever you can by clicking the button below.