Bibb Forest Farm (BFF) is a better than organic farm rooted ecological practices. We seek to provide fresh, nutritive food with exceptional taste to our customers and CSA Members.
Ecological farming simply put should be about feeding the soil that feeds the plants that feeds the people. There are few places left on Earth that we can simply sustain off of what is already there. Thus we feel called to restore life on the farm with proper guidance, working with nature to undo years of damage. Compaction, hardpans and lack of fertility resulted from a history. of extensive plowing, grazing by sharecroppers. A broken system, where cash crops (tobacco) and fodder crops reigned in years of unsustainable practices.
Bibb Forest Farm (BFF) is a better than organic farm rooted in ecological practices. Our aim is to provide fresh, nutrient dense food with exceptional taste to our CSA members. By taking care of our landscape our hope is to nourish our members along with the soil.
BFF is a first generation farm started in 2017. Jesse Roberts is the resident horticulturist and farm manager. Jesse’s father is the project manager and artist. Jesse’s mother first introduced him into “real” food following her studies of health and nutrition while battling colon cancer.
After leaving home, Jesse first studied biology in Virginia. As a student-athlete, trying to eat organic became a challenge due to the added expense and Jesse started to research differences between conventional and organic farming. This became a 4 year study into understanding the balance of chemistry, biology and physical science involved in producing healthy crops. Three of those years he studied horticulture and business management in the Netherlands. Now from sun-up until after the sun sets, Jesse is busy working the land at BFF producing a labor of love, nutrient dense produce without pesticides and herbicides.
Jesse’s father Tom and mother Shari live in Midlothian. Tom spearheads building projects, forages for wild mushrooms in the forest, always looking for a new adventure, most often with a backpack and plein air oil painting supplies. Shari follows the tradition of her grandfather, a vegetable huckster with a horse and cart, introducing the farms products to fine restaurants and other retailers.
Is Bibb Forest Farm Organic?
Bibb Forest Farm considered completing the application process to be “certified organic” by the USDA, but decided that such a certification would diminish the reputation of the farm produce, lumping the farm into a category often misleading. Farms actually “certified organic” are permitted to use approved pesticides and herbicides, chemical sprays that BFF chooses not to use. The process involves a lot of busy work and a list of don’ts, while BFF focuses on caring for the soil growing nutrient dense produce without pesticides and herbicides.
At BFF we use no synthetic pesticides or fertilizers. We do not grow genetically modified organisms (“GMOs”).
Here’s why our food is better than “organic.” Instead of relying on a list of approved pesticides and herbicides, we plant habitat for pollinators, use aromatic and medicinal plants for homemade immune boosting crop sprays. We plant cover crops to nourish the soil. We use lots of compost to replenish carbon lost in uncovering the soil. We even make compost teas with cultured microbes to nourish the plants and soil. We conduct in depth soil sampling, to design and use custom amendments targeted for the crops we grow to provide to you the most nutritious veggies that we can.
Where do we sell?
We sell on our online store to CSA and store members with currently 4 pickup points:
- Salisbury 4-5 PM, Wednesdays
- Church Hill 4-5 PM, Wednesdays
- West End 4-5 PM, Wednesdays
- On the farm pickup 11-3 PM, Fridays (contact for address)
- Specific address provided on checkout when pickup location is selection
BFF also participates in Fallline Farms and Local Roots (a nonprofit, online farmers market serving the greater Richmond area).
What else goes on at BFF?
BFF is known for their beautiful and delicious egg yolks laid by 5 different breeds of laying hens. The hens are pulled through the pasture weekly and are protected by Jane, the guard dog. They are feed veg scraps and non GMO grain.
BFF also runs a small flerd (herd of cow/flock of sheep in the same field). Limited quantities of grass-finished lamb, beef and goat are currently available (Nov, 2019). No antibiotics, wormers, or hormones ever used to date. BFF looks forward to growing their flerd may start working towards a silvopasture system through the forest.
BFF offers a 1000-member herdshare lease for raw chèvre goat cheese. Option to join is closed until spring 2020.
Down the road, BFF may add heritage hogs & wild simulated mushrooms in the forest.
(Dec 13, 2019)