Vendor Spotlight: 3 Porch Farm
by Sam Eberhard - AFM Outreach Intern and My Market Ambassador
Coming to the farmers market on a hot summer day can get a bit brutal under the scorching sun, but that can be helped by getting a delicious and refreshing HoneyPop from 3 Porch Farm. Mandy and Steve, the faces behind this amazing business, are super-friendly folks, always seem to have smiles on their faces, and deeply care about sustainable and organic farming practices. Mandy and Steve began their farming adventures when they combined their interests and values towards sustainability. With Mandy’s love of horticulture and gardening and Steve’s passion for farm construction and sustainability projects, they became the perfect dynamic duo.
One of the coolest things about 3 Porch Farm, amongst so many others, is that they are solar powered and bio-fueled. To them, a main tenet of their business is to operate as carbon-neutral as possible. They were completely solar powered for about two years, but when they kept expanding and building more additions to the farm, they did not produce enough for their needs. Currently, their farm is mostly solar powered but is in the process of being completely solar powered once again. They built a certified kitchen and put in solar panels to power it, the freezers, and the refrigerators. Another incredible aspect of 3 Porch Farm is that both of their vehicles run on waste vegetable oil that they recycle from restaurants in Athens. And in the wise words of Steve, he says that being a human takes a toll on the world and that we’re the world’s biggest parasite. They, therefore, try to be as close as possible to carbon-neutral and try to minimize their negative impacts on the world.
If you have not tried one of 3 Porch Farm’s HoneyPops, then you are seriously missing out. The prized frozen treats are perfectly refreshing for these hot summer days in Georgia. These delicious and healthy treats are made from a combination of just two ingredients: fresh fruit straight from their farm and honey from their own bees or from other local bees, with occasional farm grown herbs thrown in for an added taste. The most popular flavor is the well-known Strawberry HoneyPop, but periodically they also have Strawberry-Lemon, Meyer Lemon, Blueberry-Coconut, and Chai HoneyPops to mix it up. I’ve tried them all and I can guarantee that they are all as delicious and refreshing as the next. The thing I love about these HoneyPops is that they are made entirely from fresh, local and sustainable ingredients, unlike most of the popsicles you find at the grocery stores that are filled with sugars and artificial flavors.
In addition to their HoneyPops, 3 Porch Farm produces many other amazing, delicious, and beautiful products. For a twist on plain ol’ sugar, they offer organic lavender and rose petal sugar. I’ve tried the lavender sugar and I am in love with it. It adds a perfect sweetness to any drink or baked good with a touch of lavender throughout. Their organic sugars would pair well with their organic chai tea blend as well. They make an assortment of syrups, consisting of organic herbs and fruits from their farm, that make good toppings on desserts and pancakes and they even work as a base for cocktails. They also have a nice smoked sea salt and shiitake seasoning that is a great addition to any meat, fish, or veggie dish. Last but definitely, most certainly not least, Mandy creates and sells beautiful bouquets of fresh flowers that are sustainably grown on their farm. She even has her own floral design studio, Moonflower, which provides fresh, in-season, and sustainably grown flowers and floral designs for events and weddings. So now you know who to go to for the flowers for your next event!
I truly admire both Mandy and Steve and all the hard work they put into keeping their farm as sustainable, bio-fueled, and carbon neutral as possible. Their world-famous, kid-hyponotizing HoneyPops sure are a big hit at the market and if you haven’t tried one yet, I would highly encourage you to go to the next market and get yourself one of those delightful treats!
(top two photos from www.3porchfarm.com)