14741 Canyon Road Paonia,Colorado 81428 Google Map 719-338-4146
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Growing Practices

Beyond Organic

Pure foods are our passion. 

Before chemical pesticides, chemical herbicides, chemical defoliants, and petroleum based fertilizers were introduced after WWII, all food was grown organically, naturally and in tune with nature.  Responsible farmers nurtured their soils by applying organic matter, tilling residual plant matter back into soil, rotating crops, controlling erosion, allowing their land to lie fallow and raising animals in open fields.  Land was respected and cultivated with a long range view toward the future.  But chemicals changed all that.

At Austin Family Farms we are committed to building healthier soil, working with nature to maintain healthy land, employing sustainable methods, and continuing the tradition of farming "beyond organic".  For a period of years Austin Family Farm was registered as a "certified organic" farm with the state of Colorado.  But federal standards changed all that making it unfeasible for small family-run farms like Austin Family Farm who grow a wide variety of produce to gain certification.  We operate our farm as "non-certified organic". You can be assured that everything we use in our growing process is on the approved list for organics but there are many materials on that approved list that we will not use.  Thus the term "beyond organic".

Glenn has a degree in agriculture and has watched the ag industry move through the evolution of chemicals and back. While many commercial farms continue to apply more and more chemicals to their soils and crops, many farmers are seeking better ways.  Glenn's experience in soils, sustainable agriculture and responsible land management brings farmers from all over to learn new methods of farming.  His willingness to share information and experience helps others to see a new vision for responsible care for the land.

Glenn especially loves to host special tours, school kids, culinary arts students and new farmers.  He loves passing on knowledge of pure food, responsible farming and healthy living.

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Artisan Food From Our Family to Yours.

Over the past decades farming has been relegated to simple science.  A+B=C.  Seed + fertilizer + water = food.   But it's just not that simple, mecanical or rote.  Growing great quality produce is an art.  To be sure science is involved, but truly understanding soil, seed, minerals, nutrients and water is vastly different than simply possessing knowedge about those resources.

The delicate art of farming is about resources, timing, nature, and luck.   It is about planting a certain variety of trees on a certain part of the farm to take advantage of a certain soil type or water flow to give that tree the best chance of producing good fruit.  It is about planting a certain seed at a certain time in a certain place to maximize quality and quantity of yield.  It is about working with nature and optimizing the use of resources to get the finest results possible.  The varieties, quantities, offset harvests, watering schedules, natural soil additives, and planting schedules are no accident.   They come from years of experience, months of back-breaking work, and hours of delicate harvest.

The Austin Family tradition of artisan products increased in 2008 with the addition of honey raised by three of the Austin grandchildren. Brothers, Clay and Eric joined forces with cousin William as partners in a business where they demonstrate their own passion for the farming industry.


2017 CSA Sign upFebruary 21st, 2017

Good afternoon, Though we are still in the dead of winter, CSA sign-up is just around the corner.   It is hard to believe we are already talking about the 2017 harvest season.  We want

Sign up for 2017 CSA season coming soonFebruary 2nd, 2017

Ground Hog Day greetings to everyone, The 2017 CSA season is on our minds and in our plans.  In a couple weeks we will open registration on the website.   We appreciate the support you

Christmas gift for youDecember 8th, 2016

Good evening, We hope this email finds you loving the winter cold.  It really does change the activities on the farm.  We have gone from full schedule of outside work to indoor activities as

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We look forward to sharing our harvest with you!

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