Blue Bell FarmThe Event Barn at Blue Bell Farm
This week I visited Blue Bell Farm, one of Missouri's oldest family owned Century Farms. A vendor of the Columbia Farmers Market for four years and the host of this year's farm-to-table dinner, Jamie Bryant and her husband, Derek Bryant, specialize in produce and herbs grown through organic practices, pastured eggs, grass-finished beef and on-farm events. Currently, many of their customers have been enjoying sweet baby carrots they have been selling, especially the kids who love their size and sweet taste! In the months to come they will have a variety of heirloom tomatoes and herbs as well as an heirloom tomato sauce they hope to make for the market.Jamie Bryant pruning her tomato plants
Growing up helping her grandmother garden, Jamie, has lasting childhood memories of snacking on peas, tomatoes and berries during chores. While living in St. Louis and keeping her own backyard garden, she became more active with Slow Food, Crop Mobs and gardening organically. She soon realized that growing food was what made her happy. So after a few years of gardening and a farm apprenticeship at EarthDance in 2010, she and Derek started Blue Bell Farm.
Over the past years, they have worked hard to find themselves a niche, learning that each farm must find its own unique place within the larger picture of local food around Columbia. Their decision to create an event barn has made them a primary host for on-farm events, such as weddings, corporate meetings and farm-to-table dinners. Events hosted there will all be sourced with local food, if not entirely from Blue Bell, which can provide produce, grass-finished meats, and pastured non-GMO eggs.
By hosting events as well as selling at the farmers market, they hope to bring people back to knowing the importance of local, fresh food in all occasions of life, whether it be the celebration of a marriage or simply shopping for weekday groceries. That to truly enjoy good food, one must understand the place where it came from and the people who grew it from seed.