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Farmer Julia's Blog

Feeling Grateful for our "Farmily"

Posted by Julia Smith on

It is finally starting to feel like spring is in the air. There is still a foot or two of snow on the ground but it is melting fast and I'm starting to feel hopeful and looking forward to the change of season. The Stellar Jays are nesting in the big ponderosa pine next to the feed silo just outside my office window. The trees have started pollenating and I've gone through a whole box of tissues since yesterday. We've had our first litter of piglets for the year (on Facebook Live! Check it out if you missed it) with...

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Urban Digs Farm is now Blue Sky Ranch!

Posted by Julia Smith on

Today is the day! Today we complete our metamorphosis from Urban Digs Farm to Blue Sky Ranch. I've just finished updating the settings for our newsletter, and feeling nostalgic, I took a look back through the 556 newsletters I have sent over the years right back to the very first. I know some of you will probably remember it and get a kick out of it so I've posted a copy of it for posterity.   

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Our First Newsletter from 2011

Posted by Julia Smith on

Following is a copy of the first newsletter we ever sent back on November 11th, 2011. Back then we were running a (totally illegal at the time) urban farm out of a yard on the west side of Vancouver. We've sure come a long way. I've just gotten off the phone with the new health inspector for our butcher shop who needs to me send him the many food safety plans we wrote for the last guy. He would have a heart attack if he read this newsletter. We certainly don't have a secret fridge of goodies tucked away around...

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Pasture-Raised Meat: Carbon Credits for Carnivores

Posted by Julia Smith on

Meat gets a bad rap and is often vilified and called out for being a leading cause of climate change. Industrial agriculture is indeed responsible for a myriad of climate disasters from greenhouse gas emissions to water pollution to desertification and erosion, but going vegan is not the answer. Well managed pastures can sequester more carbon than a forest. Lately, there has been a lot of research on the regenerative properties of sustainable agriculture and the results are clear - Regenerative farming practices can not only feed the world, they can actually repair the damage we have done to our ecosystem.  According to...

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Rory Holland Awarded Devorah Kahn Award for Leadership in Food Security in our Region

Posted by Julia Smith on

Each year for the past 11 years, the Vancouver Farmers Markets Board of Directors has recognized a local citizen, business or organization that has gone above and beyond to enhance our regional food system. VFM's 'Devorah Kahn Award for Leadership in Food Security in our Region’ is given annually in honour of one of VFM’s founders and first Executive Director, Devorah Kahn, and is presented publicly at VFM’s Annual General Meeting. Past recipients of this award have included farmers Susan Davidson, Mary Forstbauer and Fred Reid, the Stewardship team of UBC Farm, Herb Barbolet, Vancity’s Community Investment team, HB Lanarc...

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