Press release from Krys Cail:
Farmer Ground Flour Granted Funds by USDA Rural Development to Expand Market
Trumansburg, New York
Farmer Ground Flour, a farmer-owned, farmer-operated grain mill producing flour from locally-grown grains, announces that it has successfully competed for USDA Rural Development funds to expand its marketing. Farmer Ground Flour was awarded $75,000 by the federal agency under the Value-added Producers grant program. These funds will be matched by $50,000 in working capital contributed to the project by Farmer Ground Flour, and a $25,000 personal loan made to the project by local residents Jon Bosak and Bethany Schroeder. Mr. Bosak and Ms. Schroeder are enthusiastic about participating in reviving local grain growing and milling in Tompkins County, and agreed to have the interest on the loan paid to them in flour and grain on a monthly basis. The two-year, $150,000 marketing expansion project will focus on expanding wholesale sales to bakers and institutions, and retail sales at stores and farmers markets.
Farmer Ground Flour is located in Trumansburg, NY, in a former Agway facility where, years ago, animal feeds were milled. The mill is co-owned by the miller/farmer, Greg Mol, and the farmers who grow most of the grain, Thor Oechsner and Erick Smith. Farmer Ground Flour started grinding local organic grains in 2008. The company is committed to organic agriculture, and to the development of a truly sustainable agricultural economy. The marketing expansion project will help spur the revival of wheat growing in New York State, which was once a major producer of wheat and other grain flours. With a renewed interest in sourcing food from local and regional growers, rather than from further afield, the market for locally-grown grain products is established and growing. This project will help to connect grain farmers to local and regional markets, through an expanding milling and marketing value chain.