ROB DRAL The Standard
SCUGOG: Willowtree Farm has been a local staple in the community of Scugog since 1969.
This past weekend, the farm celebrated the grand opening of their new farm store. The brand new farm store allows Willowtree Farm to sell farm fresh food all year round.
Willowtree Farm is a family run farm that prides themselves on sharing their families’ passion for fresh, top-quality food. They strive to be a ‘one-stop-shop’ for the community.
The old market, while full of character and charm, had been “bursting at the seams,” according to Alyson McKay of Willowtree Farm. Last year, the farm decided they needed to upgrade. The new market features everything you could ever want from a farm. They have a wide variety of fresh produce, all grown on the farm or from other farms in Ontario. In addition to produce, Willowtree Farm provides the community with an impressive selection of baked goods, such as, pies, tarts, fritters, and bread. Other products available for purchase are local honey, all kinds of mustards, maple syrup, and apple cider.
One of the more exciting additions to the farm is the new on-site butcher shop.
The butcher shop provides the community with fresh, antibiotic free, naturally-raised, no hormone added meat, including steaks, sausages, lamb chops, and pork. There is truly nothing you can’t buy at Willowtree Farm.
The grand opening event held on Saturday, July 23, was a huge success. The community came out in full support of the farm throughout the day. Willowtree offered a free pig roast, balloon animals, wagon rides, free samples, and a live band to keep the celebration going throughout the day.
Willowtree Farm is owned by the McKay family, starting with Rod McKay. At the age of 19, Rod bought the farm just outside downtown Port Perry. After University, Rod started with cash crops and dairy farming and continued dairy farming for the next 20 years. It was during this time, that Rod met his wife to be, Marlene. She grew up on a strawberry farm, and in 1979; Rod surprised her with four acres of strawberry plants. Marlene sold strawberries from a wagon on the side of the road. The farm continued to grow, so Rod and Marlene built their first farm store in 1990.
Things only grew from there. Rod, his two sons, Jordan and Alex, and their wives, Alyson and Kelty, now maintain Willowtree Farm. The family strives to provide the community with the best, and most fresh food, while also practicing sustainable farming methods, and raise their animals in a happy, and healthy environment.
The family travels to 12 different farmers markets in Ontario, to provide customers with the convenience of getting everything in one place. They also maintain a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, which serves over 300 families. To stay on top of the latest farming techniques, Willowtree attends industry workshops and conferences to better maintain healthy, and sustainable crops. Some of the techniques used are: soil and erosion protection, crop rotation, pest management, and limiting sprays to keep the soil as rich as possible. All of their animals are raised humanely and pasture-raised.
They are not fed growth hormones or antibiotics. Willowtree Farm believes a “healthy animal, tastes better.”
Willowtree Farm is open 7 days a week, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., except for Saturday, when the farm is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
You can find Willowtree Farm at 975 Regional Rd. 21, in Port Perry. For more information, please visit their website at, www.willowtreefarm.ca, or give them a call at, 905-985-4973.
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