Closure effective April 13
BERWICK — CBC News broke the news on the weekend that organic grain-handling pioneer Homestead Organics, after 30 years in business, will close down amid financial troubles.
See the embedded Facebook link to the CBC story below.
On the front page of its website this morning, the company confirmed the situation and announced its closure, effective April 13: “So Sad! Yes Homestead Organics is closing its doors after 30 years. Excessive competition, rapid expansion costs, debt and a dozen other factors overcame us. The Company officially closes its doors this Friday, April 13th. All the inventory must go. Call ahead to reserve grains, feeds, and farm supplies for pickup this week. Inventory is leaving quickly so call soon. Farm supplies are billed at regular prices and payment is COD.”
The news has had reverberations across social media and the organic agriculture industry.
“I was informed when I was at the store last Wednesday… Big shock for all organic farmers in Eastern Ontario,” Christine Estermann commented on Facebook.
John Grahem noted on Facebook it was “a shame there was not an opportunity for regional investors to try and save homestead. It was a great company and important logistical partner in our agri-eco system. Interested to learn more…”
“With the amount of money they owed local farmers,” replied Andrew Byvelds in the same Facebook thread, “more investment would not [have] helped.”
“Very sorry to hear this. The guy and his company served this area well for a long time,” Neil Grant, referring to company owner Tom Manley, posted in a share of the CBC story.
Manley has been a prime mover with the Canadian Organic Growers (COG) charitable organization for years. Homestead Organics was a key sponsor and closely associated with COG’s annual Eco Farm Day event held every winter in Cornwall.
Homestead got its start with a feed mill in Berwick, later expanding seed-cleaning and flour-milling operations into a former factory site on Allison Rd. in Morrisburg. That 2014 growth spurt was followed by the 2016 purchase of a third site — another feed mill — in Sebringville, Ont.
This article was edited to include new information arising from the post on Homestead Organics’ website.
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