Name: Rock Steady Farm
What they do:
Rock Steady Farm is a queer-owned and operated vegetable cooperative whose goal is to improve equity in the food system and create safer spaces to train and allow queer and BIPOC (Black, Indiginous, and People of Color) farmers to thrive, as well as to increase access to healthy foods for all.
How they do it:
Rock Steady Farm, founded in 2015, manages a total of 12 acres using sustainable, regenerative agriculture practices . They work to increase equity in the food system and operate a 500-member sliding scale community-supported agriculture (CSA) program that offers no-cost and subsidized shares to low-income households, including communities of color, LGBTQIA+ folks, seniors, families with young children, and people living with serious health concerns. These fully subsidized “solidarity shares” are made possible through the support of community foundations and donors to their Food Access Fund. Food access and CSA partners include the North East Community Center, the Free People’s Market, the Good Food Farmer Network, and many more.
Rock Steady Farm prioritizes teaching and training on their land. Their core program involves teaching farmers to invest in their team’s culture and take on more workers. Their training programs include a Pollinate Immersion Program, which is a paid program to help novice queer and trans farmers who are interested in cooperative farm business models that center equitable food access. The program was inspired by the work that pollinators contribute to our ecosystem. Rocksteady Farm aims to do the same by enabling queer and trans farmers to apply their own skills to the agriculture field.
By doing so, they also strengthen the farmer care of LGBTQ stakeholders to ensure better wages for all.
Interesting fact about how it is working to positively affect the food system and current campaign:
By offering solidarity shares through their Food Access Fund , Rock Steady Farm encourages donors to support their community. Folks who can, pay more in order to reduce or eliminate the cost for someone else. Each year they see an increase in the number of people who sign up to fund solidarity shares!
Location: 41 Kaye Road, Millerton New York
Areas served: Dutchess County, New York
Year Started: 2015
Contact Information: Programs@rocksteadyfarm.com