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FOOD & BEVERAGES
yellowbarnfood.com

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Stage

Seed | Alive

Total Raised

$50K

Last Raised

$50K

About Yellow Barn

Good Boy Organics makes delicious Biodynamic® pasta sauces which are distributed by Yellow Barn.

Yellow Barn Headquarter Location

180 Main Street

Hornell, New York, 14843,

United States

607.324.2200

Latest Yellow Barn News

‘An oasis in the desert’: Boulder County’s Foothills Farm Collective fostering collaboration

Sep 5, 2021

September 5, 2021 at 8:00 a.m. Standing atop a hill overlooking Foothills Highway and the farmland and open space just outside Boulder, the lush, green patch of garden at Elk Run Farm stands out in the otherwise dry, yellow landscape recently marked by the Calwood Fire burn scar. For about six years, farm cofounders Nick DiDomenico and Marissa Pulaski have been cultivating the land along U.S. 36, breathing new life into property DiDomenico was told would never be ideal for farming. “It’s an oasis in the desert,” DiDomenico said. “If we can farm here, we can farm anywhere.” Through their nonprofit Drylands Agroecology Research and the newly formed Foothills Farm Collective , they’re sharing knowledge about regenerative design with other small farms located in and around Boulder, Longmont and Lyons. Currently, Elk Run/Drylands, Yellow Barn Farm, Jack’s Solar Garden, Metacarbon Organic Farm, Mustang Whiskey Ranch and Sentient Healing make up the collective, which focuses on sustainability, regenerative practices and community building. Ruby the dog looks over her empire, Elk Run Farm in north Boulder, a member of the Foothills Farm Collective. Elk Run Farm also is the home of the nonprofit Drylands Agroecology Research, which is focused on improving farmland through regenerative design. (Cliff Grassmick/Staff Photographer) “By being able to have a platform that is both utilizing these regenerative practices and bringing in others to be able to showcase what they’re working on, we can actually start creating more of this localized economy,” Azuraye Wycoff said. Wycoff is managing director of Yellow Barn Farm , nestled just south of Elk Run Farm on Foothills Highway. The farm is located on the historic Allen’s Farm property, about 100 acres that Wycoff’s family has owned for some two decades. Though she’d once given up on the idea of being in Boulder County on her family’s land, something inside her changed last year. Wycoff moved back and took over the property days before the Calwood Fire burned the mountainside behind it. She is very much modeling Yellow Barn after its neighbor Elk Run. Since taking over, she’s planted crops and trees and is using Elk Run’s pigs to help till the land. Working together and sharing skills is one of the benefits of the collective, Wycoff noted. For example, she brings managerial and business experience and a deep understanding of people, while DiDomenico has an intimate relationship with the land and Pulaski is all about connection and healing. The collective creates opportunities for small local farms to promote their work, while allowing farmers the space for what they enjoy and do best. “The collective is lifting up the opportunity for farmers to just farm,” Pulaski said. Additionally, it prevents isolation and competition, instead fostering collaboration between small local farms that would be better suited working together, she added. Elk Run is self-sustaining. The people who work there grow the food they eat, everything from apples and corn to gooseberries, cherries and medicinal herbs and plants. The farm offers workshops and provides consulting through its nonprofit. Drylands and other farms in the Foothills Farm Collective such as Jack’s Solar Garden have worked or are planning to work with the city and county of Boulder on projects ranging from providing solar energy to restoring city- or county-owned land. Marissa Pulaski, co-director of the Drylands Agroecology Research nonprofit and co-founder of Elk Run Farm, talks Wednesday about the drought-resistant corn grown on the farm. The nonprofit and other members of the Foothills Farm Collective hope to work with the city and county of Boulder to restore publicly owned land, among other possible collaborations. (Cliff Grassmick/Staff Photographer) Yellow Barn is on a similar trajectory, in large part due to guidance from Drylands. The similarities are intentional. When touring multiple farms within the collective, the patterns become evident. “I think that helps people really grasp and understand what’s possible,” Pulaski said. Wycoff also rents space on her farm to a small moving company and a landscaping business, among others. It’s a way to bring in some money and to build connections with people who have skills that could benefit the farm. She’s begun a compost pick-up program and hopes to begin delivering produce next season. The Foothills Farm Collective itself is fairly new, but the members are dreaming big — both in terms of what each individual farm can accomplish as well as the ways in which the collective can work well together. As Elk Run continues to seek out additional dry, abandoned landscapes to improve, “we can take everything we’re demonstrating here to uplift different communities,” Pulaski said. Pulaski has helped foster a relationship with Indigenous communities in the area as part of a wider push to return lands to the peoples who historically lived there. For example, the farm’s community-supported agriculture program is used to support Indigenous elders with produce, she said. The ultimate goal is to rent garden plots at Yellow Barn to local Indigenous people. “We’re really positioning ourselves to be leaders in that growing movement to use farming as a tool to restore the earth … to build ecosystems, to store more water in the soil, to build more topsoil,” DiDomenico said. “We really believe that these practices are the solution to every one of our problems that we’re facing as a culture and society today.” “I really want this to be a sanctuary where people can … come and work through whatever they’ve got going on so that they can really be in coherence with themselves, really understand who they are,” Wycoff added. Sign up for email newsletters

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