The 2017 Fancy Food Show in New York last month brought together some of the biggest names and boldest beginners in specialty food. From venerable championship-winning cheesemakers to forward thinking startups, the show featured a dizzying number of attendees and exhibitors.
It was there that I chanced upon Five Acre Farms, a dairy provider with a unique approach to sustainability and a mission to improve access to fresh, locally-sourced food. I had the opportunity to catch up with Founder and Chief Executive Officer Dan Horan after the show to find out more about the company and its goals.
“Five Acre Farms brings the best-tasting local food to grocery stores, restaurants, and food shops. We find outstanding farmers using sustainable practices, pay them fairly, and tell their stories,” noted Dan. “Our business helps to create new jobs, promote the local economy, expand access to local food, safeguard the environment, preserve farmland, protect groundwater, and foster proper animal treatment. We call this being ‘Positively Local®.’”
Dan explained to me how Five Acre Farms’ mission—to keep farmers farming and expand access to local food—is evident in every product the company produces. From Milk, Half & Half, Heavy Cream, Buttermilk, Greek and Regular Yogurts, Cage Free Eggs, and even seasonal Apple Cider, every product that Five Acre Farms produces is labelled with the specific farm from which that batch of the product was made, allowing consumers to know exactly where their food is coming from.
And the company’s focus on fresh local sourcing has paid dividends in taste and quality, too; at the Fancy Food Show, Five Acre Farms took home its second sofi Award—a Gold for the company’s Honey Whole Milk Kefir.
“We couldn’t be prouder that our products have been recognized with such a prestigious honor two years running – with the Gold for our Local Honey Kefir this year and as a finalist for our Local Maple Kefir last year,” Dan said. “We use pure ingredients and keep it simple. It all starts with the best local whole milk from cows cared for by outstanding local farmers. We then add 12 carefully selected live cultures and create this kefir’s delicate flavor by adding just the right amount of honey from local bees. Our kefir is pasteurized and homogenized, and we never use any artificial sweeteners, additives, thickeners, gums, or stabilizers.”
With distribution throughout New York and the tri-state area through UNFI, McMahon’s Farm, Swede Farms, Chef’s Warehouse, Fischer Foods, and Cream-O-Land, plans to expand into Washington D.C., Philadelphia, and Boston markets in the immediate future, and new product offerings in the works, as well, the future is bright for Five Acre Farms.
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