Harpswell farmer the right fit for Wolfe’s Neck Center in Freeport

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FREEPORT — Joe Grady’s passion for farming and education led him to open Two Coves Farm with his wife Laura in Harpswell 10 years ago.

That passion also helped Grady land a position in January with Wolfe’s Neck Center in Freeport as the senior director of programs for an organization that shares his passion.

“Wolfe’s Neck’s mission of educating people on where their food comes from is something that I’ve had a passion for since I started farming,” Grady said. “So I think this is going to be a perfect fit.”

When the Gradys started Two Coves in 2009 they wanted to have more opportunities to educate consumers about where their food comes from. “But when you are running a farm,” he said,”while you’re trying to make a living you become really busy.”

Grady said he’s now happy to be a part of an organization that plays an role in education and exposure. As a former high school teacher, education around the farming industry is very important to him.

“The philosophy of our farming model is rooted in regenerative agriculture practices, which is also key to Wolfe’s Neck’s approach to farming and public education,” he said. “It’s obvious things are going on with our climate and we have to adapt to that and regenerative agriculture practices help us do that.”

Grady said he came to the realization that pasture-raised animals allowed to express their natural traits and inclinations are healthier and more nutritious to consume.

“We always seek to mimic the natural behavior of ruminant animals on the grazing land,” he said. “In doing this, we are capturing carbon from the air and putting it to use in the soil.”

David Herring, executive director of Wolfe’s Neck Center, said Grady has all the qualities the organization was seeking.

“Grady cares so much about educating the public about new farming practices and educating them about where their food comes from, and I think his combination of being a farmer and a high school teacher is very interesting and will really benefit this organization,” Herring said.

Despite taking on more responsibility, Grady said operations at Two Coves Farm shouldn’t change, since an employee can fill in for him as needed.

“Nothing at Two Coves will change; we are still committed to the farm and the Harpswell community,” he said. “I will just be wearing a few different hats but I am used to doing that on my own farm.”

This weekend, Two Coves Farm will be hosting its annual “Lamb Visiting Day” on April 14, when visitors to the farm at 90 Neil’s Point Road can pet the lambs and take pictures with them.

Grady said a few ewes gave birth over the last month, so many adorable babies can be seen on Sunday.

“We still plan on serving this community in Harpswell and we have had no thoughts on getting out of the farming business,” he said. “If anything, this new opportunity for me at Wolfe’s Neck Center will help me learn new things that I can possibly implement on our farm in Harpswell.”

Patti McDonald can be reached at 780-9123 or pmcdonald@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: @pmcdonaldme.

Joe Grady, shown here with his dog, Tess, is the owner of Two Coves Farm in Harpswell and the new senior director of programs at Wolfe’s Neck Center in Freeport.

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