Interview with Jane Nesbit, Swallowtail Farm Land Owner
What inspired you to start Swallowtail Farm as a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm?
We bought the 30-acre property in 1987 and thought it would be great for farming. Although my husband was starting a printing company, we did farm it the first year with our neighbor. After that first year, we decided to stick to printing for a while.
Noah Shitama came along in 2009, when he and his friend planted a huge garden behind our house, but at the time it was just for family consumption. Then the following year, they expanded the farming up the hillside and started Swallowtail CSA.
Why should people buy into CSAs?
A great reason is to support the local economy. You also know where your food comes from; you get to know the person who is growing your food, planting the seeds, nurturing the food, washing it and delivering it. You also know that the food is all organic. There is nothing detrimental to people or animals—it’s the best food you can get. Shareholders pre-buy their food shares and we fill their basket with whatever is harvested. It’s bringing people and their food together.
Can you explain the Farm to Table events?
We pair each project needed with a dinner and try to get the project done before the dinner so that people can see what they bought with their tickets. We were able to complete the greenhouse from the proceeds of the dinner in November. The next Farm to Table is to pay for a new well.
What are your plans for the future?
We can always use more members, which means we will need more volunteers and apprentices. One of the expansions is to open up a B&B. We would also like to expand the educational aspects of the farm, which involves teaching people about the nutritional value of eating better food and staying away from processed food. We would love to host education seminars, share sustainable living ideas and host community groups that might want to use our space for retreats. We have also gotten a 501(c)3 status for the Swallowtail Institute, which will host groups of students for short stints to teach them about sustainable farming.
Who can visit Swallowtail Farm?
Anyone can come visit! Please come!
For more information about Swallowtail Farm, please visit www.swallowtailcsa.com.