“Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart.” – Lucius Annaeus Seneca
On this farm, we are blessed by weekly affirmations from customers., friends, neighbors and community members who love this farm and support our mission of stewardship. The compliments, praises and even the helpful criticisms keep us warm in the fields on cold days and moving toward our goal to help turn the tide against a broken food system that is wrecking human and planetary health at an alarming rate.
But it’s important that we follow the wise words of Seneca and be sure to express our deep gratitude for our community and all that each of you allows us to do. Among thousands of small blessings every day, we are grateful for:
- Every dollar you spent on local food, whether at Turner Farm or anywhere else in the area. We are part of a vibrant and growing local food scene that includes a wide variety of dedicated farmers, restauranteurs, markets and other food businesses. By “buying local” and “knowing your farmer,” you’re helping to reduce food miles and build resilience in food systems that are a benefit to the local economy.
- Amazing volunteers. Turner Farm is an educational non-profit that thrives on the support of volunteers who put in thousands of hours each year in the fields, greenhouses, horse stalls, Farm Market and elsewhere. Our service to the local food community is enriched by their contributions.
- Produce, meat and egg customers who pay more for organic and/or pasture-raised food. There are certainly cheaper ways to feed your family, but when it comes to growing food, cheap comes at a price. Our customers are investing those extra dollars in soil health, carbon sequestration, animal welfare and a resilient local food economy.
- Aspiring home chefs who attend Teaching Kitchen classes. It has taken a leap of faith for our many loyal community members to join us in the evolution of Turner Farm into the home of one of the nation’s premier teaching kitchens. But, as Wendell Berry has wisely reminded us, “Eating is an agricultural act.” A skillfully employed home kitchen is the perfect compliment to well-grown food, and we are blessed by a growing number of enthusiastic learners who join Chef Stephanie to improve their culinary skills.
- The bright young faces of our Summer Camp kids. Although we are missing them now as winter approaches, the thought of their return next year and the memories of previous summers with our camp kids helps bring us a smile.
- Local communities who grow with the Turner Farm Community Gardens program. Hundreds of families in inner-city neighborhoods across Cincinnati learn, grow and help feed themselves through one of aspects of turner Farm that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves. The communities served include neighborhoods without local groceries and immigrants and refugees whose unique culturally influenced gardening and culinary methods are a source of strength and inspiration to the entire farm.
- Supporters of the Turner Farm Veteran to Farmer Training Program (VFTP). One of our late founder Bonnie Mitsui’s visions for the education and training at Turner Farm was to provide an extra incentive to help veterans transition into careers in agriculture. The VFTP evolved from this vision and now provides a two-year training evolution for honorably discharged military veterans. In 2017, the program was blessed with enough generous donations from the local community that the program will have its own pack shed and greenhouse by the spring of 2019.
For these reasons and so many more, Turner Farm is thankful. We wish each of you a safe and happy Thanksgiving holiday with friends, family and plenty of local food.