What is "organics"?

Sustainable practices of the land and livestock without the use of artificial fertilizer, pesticides, herbicides, and/or chemicals. To be a certified organic farm, you must meet all of the regulations set by the USDA and be inspected and approved annually by an independent certifying agency. Cow Creek Organic Farm is inspected annually and certified through Indiana Certified Organics. More information can be found on the USDA Organic Certification website.

How is organic farming different from other farming?

Being unable to use chemicals in organic farming, we must control weeds, disease, and fertility of the soil by sustainable means. To control weeds we use delayed planting, row cultivating and hand hoeing, and crop rotations of the land. By using a 5 year crop rotation of corn, soybeans, small grains (wheat and oats), forage or hay, and pasture, we are able to control weeds and disease in the field. Our soil fertility is maintained and increased by the use of compost, crop rotation, and pasture rotation of livestock.

Why did you decide to go organic? And when?

Being a small farm and being interested in sustainable practices and the health benefits, we began reading and researching about organic farming. We were interested in preserving the soil naturally and in producing quality, healthy grains and livestock. We were also concerned about the health of our family and the food that we were eating. In 2002, we began transistioning to organics. It takes a three year transisition period for the chemicals to leave the soil and be able to apply for certification. In 2005, we received our first organic certification through Indiana Certified Organics.

How do you market your livestock and grains?

Our livestock is sold directly to the customers for meat. We enjoy having personal, direct relationships with our customers. We sell our beef by the whole, half, and half of a half. Our pork is sold by the whole and half. Our poultry is sold by the whole. We take the customer's order, take the animals to the locker, and the customer can have their meat cut and packaged the way that they like it. We use certified organic grains, pasture and forage grown on our farm to feed our livestock. All of our excess grain is sold through the Midwest Organic Farmers Coop, of which we are members.

Can we visit your farm?

Yes, we encourage people to visit our farm. We enjoy sharing our farm with others so that they can experience hands-on where their food comes from. Spring and summer are always fun times to visit because of all of the baby animals. We do encourage you to call ahead at (217) 379-4580.