Valley Bounty, March 15, 2014: Grain
Not long ago, locally grown grain was not commercially available in Massachusetts. Now, burgeoning local grain production means that you can buy local whole grains, flours, bread, beer, and pastries. Choosing these products supports creative and innovative local businesses, and also gives you access to a range of flavors that isn’t present in conventional sources of grain, which are aggregated to eliminate seasonal and varietal differences.
Sources of locally-grown grains:
- Four Star Farms whole grains and flours are available at several local retailers (see below) and direct from the farm through their website.
- Red Fire Farm has whole and milled grain for sale at winter farmers’ markets in Amherst, Northampton and Springfield, and will be selling it at their farm stands starting in May. The grain is not certified organic, as it was planted as a productive crop on land that is currently in transition to becoming certified organic.
- Upinngill Farm has grain and flour available at their farm store, open year round in Gill.
- The Pioneer Valley Heritage Grains CSA offers a share of whole grains, beans, and corn. Distribution is in the fall—plan ahead for next year!
- Sawyer Farm in Worthington is a “whole diet” CSA offering grains along with vegetables, fruit, dairy, meat, and more.
- All Things Local, Amherst
- Atlas Farm Store, South Deerfield
- Green Field’s Market, Greenfield
- McCusker’s Market, Shelburne Falls
- River Valley Market, Northampton
- Williamsburg Market, Williamsburg
Sources of products made from locally and regionally grown grains:
Bread and baked goods:
- Backyard Bakery, Amherst, is available at All Things Local and the Amherst and Northampton Winter Markets.
- Hungry Ghost Bread, Northampton
- Wheatberry Bakery and Cafe, Amherst
- Valley Malt in Hadley malts locally (some, they grow themselves at Slow Tractor Farm on Grow Food Northampton land) and regionally grown barley for commercial and home brewing.Their list of breweries using their malt is here.
If you haven’t cooked with whole, unground grains before, you can find information from local farms—basic instructions from Four Star Farm and more detail from the Pioneer Valley Heritage Grains CSA. Both farms also have recipes on their websites.