The Quarry Farm

Posted on Friday, 5 November 2021 under Stories

The Quarry Farm takes pride in supplying seasonal organic vegetables to their local neighbourhood on Salt Spring Island. Three years after Daria Zovi and her farming partner Wieteke Verhoeven dreamt of having a 50 box CSA on the Island, they have become a home for growers passionate about local food.

We want to act as a model for other growers and customers, to ideally have all families and individuals connected to a farm in their neighbourhood,” says Zovi.

On their 35-acre property, you will find a two-acre market garden, small vineyard, and fruit trees that supply their CSA programs. The Quarry Farm also sells their surplus certified organic fruit and vegetables to local stores, chefs, and delivery programs. They have further diversified with bread and jarred programs, available throughout the summer and winter months. This year, The Quarry Farm further expanded their 40 member summer and 20 share winter CSA programs.

“Our members have always come back and we have increased 10% annually. We don’t want to grow too quickly. It’s always been taking approximately ten new members every year.” says Zovi.

farmer standing in her field

Zovi has been an organic inspector since the early days of BC’s organic movement. Her farm’s numerous community partnerships have helped create a network of local food businesses that contribute to the Island’s food security. Zovi believes that a strong connection between consumers and growers will help change the way eaters think about and consume food.

Don’t think of going to the farm as going to the grocery store; think about it as a philosophical choice. You’re supporting people and that’s more important than the food itself. It is a movement that is happening and is needed,” adds Zovi.

The Quarry Farm also supports young people interested in learning about farming through practical on-farm internships about their growing practices.

“We have two interns that we train every year and then we have some people who live on the land who do work to contribute to their vegetable box. It’s working well and our staff are well set up,” adds Zovi.

farmer standing in her field

During COVID-19, Zovi says she saw an increased interest from new and existing customers for her produce such as a chef-led meal preparation company that uses local, organic ingredients whenever possible.

“Her success trickled down to us because suddenly she was ordering hundreds of dollars worth of produce for her meals. I’ve noticed that certain customers’ demand for us exponentially increased week over week. It’s my impression that it’s because people are more interested in eating local, organic food,” says Zovi.

Purchasing directly from a local farmer is one way to contribute to and help support your community’s food system. Many growers, like some on Salt Spring Island, have created additional buying opportunities for consumers such as informal on-farm markets, farm stands, and local delivery.

You can connect with BC farmers through our online list of CSA farms from across the province.