Our Farmers & Farm Stands
From the American Farmland Trust: "Every meal on our plates contains ingredients grown on a farm. We all need farms to survive. Aside from energy from the sun, what else do we need in order to have food for ourselves and our families? We need land to grow the food, healthy soils to nourish the crops and livestock, clean water on farms and farmers to make it all happen. But the land, soil, water and people we need to grow our food are at risk."
Now, more than ever, it is important to support farmers, especially our local farmers. Gemma's Angels buys as much of our fresh fruit and vegetables for distribution from local farmers as we can. Below are several of the local farms and farmstands we use. Please patronize these great American Farmers.
Schaeffer Farms & Orchards is located in Klingerstown, PA. You can purchase their farm fresh fruit and vegetables at: Farmer's Market in Hershey (Thursday 2:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.) (end of May to end of October) and at the Pottsville Farmer's Market (Saturday 8 a.m.-12 p.m.) (end of May to end of October). You may also stop at the Farm any day from end of May thru end of October. For more information, call them at (570) 644-2277 Find them on Facebook by clicking here.
Schaeffer Farms & Orchards is located at 1000 Strites Road, Harrisburg, PA. The Strite family has been farming in the Harrisburg area since 1843. The first fruit trees and vegetables were planted by Joseph C. Strite in 1914. His son Earl would eventually join him in the business and over time expand the farm to over 250 acres. Earl sold his produce at markets in the city of Harrisburg and door to door in nearby Hummelstown. In 1950 the original market was opened on the farm. Earl's sons Joe and Tom joined their father on the farm and expanded vegetable plantings and added greenhouse operations. All three received the honor of being named Master Farmers over the course of their careers. For more information, call them at 717-564-3130. Find them on the web by clicking here.
Kenny Stehr & Sons Farm
On a beautiful summer day we are on the road visiting Brett and Henry Stehr of Kenny Stehr and Sons Farm located in Pitman, Pennsylvania. The farm was started by their father in 1948 and in 1992 Brett and Henry became the owners. Brett runs the marketing side, while Henry runs the production side.
Fruit and vegetables are grown on 350 acres of the 500 acre farm. Agronomic crops are grown on the remaining acreage. 90% of the harvest goes to several year-round retail markets and the rest is wholesaled. They grow all types of vegetables—as Brett says, “From A to Z”.
Part of their marketing strategy is to not compete when there is an abundance of product on the market. For example, they plant early sweet corn on plastic followed by cucumbers for the late season. They also supplement what they grow with products, like bananas and mushrooms, to make it convenient for customers to meet their produce needs at one location. They use social to media to connect with their customers and see the opportunity to expand the use of this technology. Both of the brothers said that the marketing side is harder than the production side.
Kenny Stehr & Sons
34 Bull Rd.
Pitman, PA 17964
Retherford Farm Stand
Steven Retherford Produce Farmstand is located at the intersection of US 322 and Fishburn Road/Hockersville Road in Hershey, PA. The Retherford family has been farming and/or in the produce business for many years. They sell a variety of produce including watermelon, cantaloupes, Adams County peaches, tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers and other fresh produce. They are open daily.