An equally excited group of Slow Money Maine planners and participants created our second “On the Road” event in Machias on Oct. 10th. A group of 40 people gathered from varied sectors of Washington County to meet each other, network, hear from for-profit and nonprofit presenters, and dialogue about the pertinent issues of wild blueberries and marketing/distribution needs for producers in the region. A tasty locally sourced lunch capped the enlivening gathering and everyone clearly seemed to confirm, and benefit from, our new outreach intentions. Special shout outs to our fabulous SMM team of Avery and Maggi, along with significant help from Cheryl Wixson, Regina Grabrovac, and discussion facilitators Marada Cook, Frank Pecoraro, Lisa Arhontes-Marshall, Tom & Theresa Gaffney, who helped make the day a great success!!!!
Theresa Gaffney/Highland Blueberry Organics
Together, Tom and Theresa Gaffney have been stewards of Highland Blueberry Farm since 1988. They began transitioning their farm from conventional practices in 1999 and their wild Maine blueberry fruit and wild Maine blueberry leaves have been certified organic by the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA) since 2002. In that time, together with a community of family, friends, and wise advisers, Tom and Theresa have been learning how to minimize what man has done to “cultivate” the plant and fruit, while maximizing what God has perfectly created. This principle has guided the care of the fields, the nurturing of pollinators, harvesting and processing, and the care of staff and customers. As a part of Highland Blueberry Farm, Highland Organics® was privileged to introduce the first-ever Organic Whole Plant Wild Maine Blueberry Tea in 2006.
Ian Yaffe/Mano en Mano
Mano en Mano was founded after a group of Latino farmworkers decided to exit the migrant stream and settle permanently in the Milbridge, Maine area. Through advocacy, educational programs, access to essential services, affordable housing, and community-building projects, we help farmworkers and immigrants plant their roots and thrive in Downeast Maine and beyond.
Inez Lombardo/Machias MarketPlace
The Machias MarketPlace provides a link between small family farmers, and our community by offering a year-round market for locally grown fruit, veggies, dairy, meat, and more. For many years now, the Market has orchestrated this supply/demand dance. We have reached a moment in our evolution where it is time for the next high-energy generation to build on where we have been and to explore the next phase of Market potential.
Two engaging simultaneous breakout sessions occured after our main presentations. Both were equally attended and lively, thoughtful, helpful conversation kept both meetings going until the lunch bell was rung! Each group has asked to remain connected in order to continue the conversation. This…. is Slow Money Maine at its best!
All things Blueberry
Marketing and Distribution from Downeast Maine