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Green And Bear It By Brittany Kielbasa

Brian and Anne Bates, owners of Bear Creek Organic Farm in Petoskey, live their dream of cultivating a sustainable future.

O

n the outskirts of Petoskey, a small farm

packs a big punch when it comes to environmental stewardship. Following college, Brian Bates and Anne Morningstar knew they wanted to live the farm life, and that they wanted to do it in the most environmentally friendly fashion possible. Six years later, these firstgeneration farmers own and operate Bear Creek Organic Farm—a thriving organic farm recognized for their exceptional products and sustainable business practices. Bear Creek Organic Farm, the first USDA Certified Organic farm in Petoskey, operates 52 weeks per year to produce a wide variety of organic greens including salad greens, microgreens, leafy greens, and living herbs in addition to honey, garlic, tomatoes, cucumbers, and other organic

16 JULY/AUGUST 2019

plants. Bear Creek sells more than 85% of its products within 12 miles of the 75-acre farm, distributing to local grocery stores and retailers, farmers’ markets, and restaurants. The farm’s hyper-local concentration ensures customers enjoy products that are thousands of miles fresher by delivering produce to customers as soon as possible after harvest, and thousands of miles greener from a carbon-footprint standpoint by reducing carbon emissions associated with transporting the produce. Recognized as “local food heroes” and named 2017 Entrepreneurs of the Year by the Petoskey Chamber of Commerce, Brian and Anne take great pride and care in every aspect of running their farm.

Profile for Country Lines

July/Aug 2019 GLE