By: Sophia Abene, Follow South Jersey Intern
SEWELL, N.J. – South Jersey has a thriving and resilient farming industry that produces some of the freshest crops in the state. The region’s agricultural sector contributes significantly to the local food production, the economy, and the overall landscape.
South Jersey residents are known to lean towards supporting local agriculture. Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs are very popular, allowing residents to access fresh, locally grown products and establish a direct connection with the farming community. They are known for turning agricultural awareness into educational initiatives. Farm field trips and agricultural workshops are very popular amongst K-12 educational programs.
Duffield’s Farm Market, Sewell, is a “fourth-generation family farm that grows fruits and vegetables! Sweet corn, strawberries, raspberries, watermelon, cantaloupe, beets, kale, spinach, brussels sprouts, green beans, apples, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, pickles, sweet potatoes, peas, black berries, pumpkins and more,” said Duffield’s social media manager Julie Hemmings.
The farm is an attractive visitor farm through agritourism activities. They offer first hand experiences which allow visitors to engage with agriculture. They produce delicious and organic pick-your-own activities.
“We host children’s birthday parties, festivals, educational classes, story time for children, hayrides, pick your own and visits to the Easter bunny house that create memories for families that last a lifetime,” Hemmings stated. These adventures can be booked through their website.
It is important to support small family owned farms to keep them running.
“We believe in the importance of knowing your farmer and knowing where your food comes from,” Hemmings said. “People can do this by becoming closer to their food supply. People can support family-owned farms by shopping in stores, especially while in season. When someone shops at a local farm, they’re getting a quality product that is grown by someone you know and can trust. As more and more things are getting brought in from other countries, it’s becoming more important to have a relationship with your local farmers.”
Duffields Farm Market is different and unique from other farms in the area.
“We strive to pave a path to the future by using lessons and memories of the past,” Hemmings said. “We hope to create a place of nostalgia for families while also staying relevant in the lives of those in our community. We try to accomplish this by using our influence on social media platforms to educate and inform the public on the importance of agriculture.”
A fun fact about South Jersey, specifically Hammonton, is that it is renowned as the “Blueberry Capital of the World” because of its significant production of blueberries. These berries thrive in the region’s soils and mild climate making South Jersey a hub for berries.
Duffield’s Farm Market demonstrates the significance of local farming in South Jersey showcasing the region’s agricultural diversity, commitment to sustainability, and role for fostering community engagement and agritourism.
Duffield’s Farm Market is located at 280 Chapel Heights Rd., Sewell.
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