On the same "Urban Livestock" panel that Ed Hubbard was speaking, Patchwork Farms' Molly Medhurst talked about their addition of chickens to their general farming efforts. Given that raising chickens in urban settings does seem to have a fairly strong tradition, it appears that, in present-day Chicago at least, this is not all that common, and requires quite a deal of negotiation through regulatory red tape. However, Ed seems to have been rather taken with the concept, and (as I understand it) you have some upcoming chicken-related news to look forward to in this space.
Despite being on the "livestock" panel, at the Midwest Urban Farmers Summit, the folks at Patchwork Farms are primarily into vegetable farming, featuring both on-site "farmstand" sales, and what seems to be a thriving (they were sold out last summer) CSA program. If you're not familiar with CSAs (and, frankly, I had to look it up, figuring it couldn't possibly be something to do with the Confederate States of America), this is Community Supported Agriculture, where farmers offer "shares" of their produce, which are purchased at the beginning of a season, and the client gets a box/bag of fresh-picked whatever-is-ready-then each week or so.
Molly Medhurst is partner with Katie Williams in Patchwork Farms, and they have quite an interesting story (bits and pieces of which came up over the course of the past weekend), much of which is detailed on their site. If you live out by them (the 2800 block of W. Chicago Ave.) and want to get in on their CSA program, you might want to get in touch with them sooner rather than later, as it sounds like they get sold out on those "shares" pretty predictably!
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Filed under: Green Tech Events