FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the difference between local and organic?
  2. What is certified organic?
  3. Why aren’t you organic?
  4. What is Greenmarket?
  5. Why should I buy my produce from you instead of the supermarket?
  6. Why should I buy my flowers from you instead of from Home Depot?
  7. How can I keep my herbs fresh for a longer period of time?
  8. Do you do tours or hayrides on your farm?
  9. Do you have animals on your farm?
  10. How big is your farm?

Do you have additional questions that haven’t been answered?  Feel free to email us at info@stokesfarm.com.

Q1 – What is the difference between local and organic?

Local means that your food is grown within a 100-mile radius of where you live. Organic means that from seed to table nothing that was “made by man” was used in the production of that product.

Q2 – What is certified organic?

Certified organic means that an outside agency has certified that your production methods adhere to certain standards. You will see a sign designating the name of the agency near the product.

Q3 – Why aren’t you organic?

We feel that “local” is more important than organic. Our vegetables travel no more than 25 miles to market. Most of the time it travels about 500 yards from the field to the farm stand. An organic strawberry traveling from California to NYC uses about 30 cents of diesel fuel. Our vegetables use miniscule amounts of fuel and require minimal carbon to get it to your plate. We use a production method called IPM (Integrated Pest Management), which uses scouting to determine if any control methods need to be used. We also use natural predators in our tomato crop and have cut pesticide use to “zero” in that crop. Plants, like us, need vitamins and minerals to grow well. The fertilizer we use does not originate from the back end of a cow and thus we cannot consider our produce organic. We are not anti-organic. True organic farmers work very hard and are really worthy of respect. The bottom line is that it is more important to know who grows your food and establish a relationship with them than it is to eat organic kumquats from 3000 miles away without knowing anything about their production.

Q4 – What is Greenmarket?

Greenmarket is a program of The Council on the Environment of NYC. It provides producers with locations throughout the five boroughs to sell their wares directly to the public. Started in 1976 by Barry Benepe and Bob Lewis, the Greenmarket system is recognized as one of the best in the world and has kept many farms like ours from selling to developers. You can visit the Greenmarket web site by going to http://www.cenyc.org/greenmarket.

Q5 – Why should I buy my produce from you instead of the supermarket?

How old is the produce in the supermarket? Yeah….I don’t know either. At the moment a vegetable is harvested, time is working against you. The longer the veggies sit in a cooler or a shelf, the more nutrients are depleted. Our vegetables go from field to fork in less than 24 hours, so the nutrients, as well as the flavor, are at their peak. A typical tomato passes through no less than 4 hands before it hits the shelf at a supermarket. Our tomatoes are picked and the next hand to touch them is yours!

Q6 – Why should I buy my flowers from you instead of from Home Depot?

We have 40,000 square feet of greenhouses, and produce 90% of the flowers that are sold at the farm. When you buy a flower at our farm, you get sound advice about growing and a smiling face to help you to your car along with it. Flowers at a big box store are always great the first day they arrive at the store, but then steadily decline. Try to find someone to answer your questions……actually try to find anyone at all. These stores answer to their stockholders. We answer to you. Local-fresh-healthy.

Q7 – How can I keep my herbs fresh for a longer period of time?

Most herbs stored in a zip-lock bag last for a week or more. They need to be in the fridge, but not too cold. If your fridge is lower than 40 degrees basil may turn black. Another way to store your herbs is wrapped in a damp paper towel in the fridge. Our customers have had equal success with both methods.

Q8 – Do you do tours or hayrides on your farm?

Yes! We now offer hayrides, as well as other special events. Call our farm office at 201-768-3931 for more information.

Q9 – Do you have animals on your farm?

We concentrate on flowers, vegetables and herbs. Right now, we do not have any animals- except for 2 barn cats, Beatrice and Sandy.

Q10 – How big is your farm?

Our farm is 17 acres. The average farm in New Jersey is 95 acres, so we are quite small, however, just to have any agricultural operation in Bergen County, NJ is quite an accomplishment. In the middle of the suburbs, where home prices are in the millions, our family farm has not only survived, but thrived and we now produce over 75 varieties of herbs and vegetables.