Harland's Creek Farm-Certified Organic

Organic--Historic--Enduring

Twitter linkHarland's Creek Farm, LLC is a certified organic farm located four miles west of Pittsboro NC.  All our flowers, herbs, vegetables, and fruits are certified organic.  The farm is operated by Judy Lessler, Erasmo Flores, and Yoli Nill Rios. Judy started the farm with her husband in 1999.  After many years working on the farm, Erasmo became a partner in 2016. Yoli, Erasmo's wife joined in the farm operations in 2018. 

We sell our products at the Durham Farmers Market on Saturdays and Wednesdays. Visit the market's web site for more information. et.  We operate two CSAs, our Tuesday CSA with deliveries in Raleigh, Chapel Hill, and Pittsboro and our Durham Collaborative CSA with deliveries at the Durham Farmers Market.  See the CSA tabs for more information and to enroll.  And we also sell to local restaurants, mainly: Poole's Downtown Diner, and Death and Taxes in Raleigh, Tazza Kitchen in Raleigh, and The Boot, Maeto Bar de Taps, and Geer Street in Durham.  These are the all topnotch places with excellent chefs. We are particularly in awe of Ashley Christensen who leads a great team of chefs in multiple sites. 

You can buy directly from us.  Please send an e-mail to hcffarmers@gmail.com  or call Erasmo at 919-799-6982 for more information.

  The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations writes   “…organic [methods] …are increasing soil organic carbon by [transferring] large amounts of CO2 from the atmosphere to the soil … enhanced carbon sequestration, coupled with additional biodiversity…organic agriculture [has] potential for mitigating and adapting to climate change. From http://www.fao.org/organicag/oa-specialfeatures/oa-climatechange/en/  January 29, 2017. 

We farm organically--to protect our staff, our customers,

and our world.

Join us in our mission. 

 

 

 

 

Cooking--Farming--Thinking

Harland's Creek Farm adopts Plastic Free Packaging

Posted by Harland;s Creek Farm :: Thursday, April 4 :: 1:38pm

This winter, Harland's Creek Farm researched ways to move away from plastic packaging. Judy read numerous articles and talked to Rhonda Sherman, NC State Solid Waste specialist. We learned we should avoid items that are merely biodegradable but not compostable because biodegradable can mean the material is a composite of plastic and plant material. The plant material degrades in sunlight, but tiny pieces of plastic remain. What is needed are materials that are ultimately converted into water and CO2 by bacteria, that is, we want something that bacteria can consume in its entirety.

First, we got excited about various certified-compostable bags. However, there was a catch. These bags are guaranteed compostable at industrial composting facilities. They cannot be put into the waste stream that ends at the landfill because they will end up in an anaerobic environment, (read no bacteria operating). For them to breakdown, Certified-compostable must enter a waste stream that ends at an industrial composting facility.

No problem, we decided, we will have the customer return their bags, and we will take them to the local industrial composting facility. Judy called, and the facility refused to take them saying they only served customers for whom the compostable bags are mixed with a large volume of other compostable waste.

These biobags, as they are called, are broken down by thermophilic bacteria that thrive at temperatures 120-140 degrees Fahrenheit. Several of Judy's friends, however, told her they tossed biobags full of kitchen waste in their home compost pile and they eventually disappeared. Not being industrial composters, these friends had no idea of how long it took or what the temperature inside their pile was. "Maybe three months," one said.  

We are now testing composting biobags on our farm monitoring the time and temperature of the pile. So far we were able to get the temperature up to 105 degrees Fahrenheit on a cold day. If we are successful, these bags may become an option in the future, but not now.

Then we discovered glassine bags, which are used in the baking industry. They are made of polished paper and are translucent. They are recyclable, biodegradable, and compostable in a home compost pile. We have decided to use these for our small, leafy greens.

So here is our new bottom line policy: So here is our new bottom line policy:

  • Large-leafed greens, as well as beets, carrots, and so on, will be bunched using paper twist-ties. The paper in the twist-ties composts quickly in a home compost pile, and the thin wire rusts quickly. Twist ties can be reused by the customer.
  • Tender greens, such as head lettuce, will be packed in trimmed paper bags so you can see the product. Things like okra, green beans, eggplant, potatoes, squash, etc. will be displayed at market in containers we take home and reuse. If the customer does not have their own bag to put these in, we will put them in paper bags for transport. These can to in the regular waste stream, be reused by the customer, and will quickly break down in your home compost pile.
  • Small-leafed greens, such as spinach, arugula, salad mix, baby greens, will be packed in glassine bags.
  • If you need a shopping bag, we will provide you with a paper bag.  

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HCF Partners

Judy started HCF.  She develops meal plans for the CSAs, maintains our website, and writes our blog. Judy is now in her seventies, and you are not likely to see her at our early morning markets, because she is sleeping in.

Erasmo worked part-time on the farm for years, He became a partner in 2016 and lives in Siler City. You can meet him at the Saturday Durham Farmers' market on alternate Saturdays.  He is active in all aspects of the farm, is our main tractor guy, and is transitioning into doing the book-keeping. He and his wife Yoli work on the farm. Also, you can find them at the Durham Farmers' Market with their son Michael who is a math-wise. 

We are a great team.

Where to buy our organic food

You can get our food by:

Visiting one of these local restaurants:

Pittsboro restaurants that have local food we love are: