Know your farmer: Jon Strite
Katie Carpenter | 07.02.13
The first fruit tree at Strite's Orchard was planted in 1914.
Strite’s Orchard is a 300-acre fruit and vegetable farm in Harrisburg. The first fruit trees and vegetables were planted by Joseph C. Strite in 1914 and has remained in the Strite family for four generations. In fact, next year will be the 100-year anniversary of the farm.
Jon Strite is proud to continue his great-grandfather’s legacy and runs the farm today with his brother and cousin.
Jon started working in the market at just 8 years old, and he says that working on the farm is just part of who he is.
“It’s our family legacy. It’s what we do."- Jon Strite
"And, it defines us in a way. It’s just one of those things you take pride in and you just try to do the best you can do so it’s here for the next generation if they choose to do it,” he says.
Hear Jon's story and why he's passionate about his job and the importance of buying fresh and local in PA:
More about Strite's:
Jon says that sometimes farming is kind of like not being able to see the forest from the trees. But, although it’s hard work and a lot of attention to detail, it is rewarding to wake up one day and look out at a planted field, and to see fresh food served on the table after harvest.
“Farming is a profession of hope." -Brian Brett
Strite says that knowing the process of where our food comes from, and that it doesn’t just come from a can on a grocery store shelf, connects us to our health and the community.
“’Buy fresh, buy local.’ That’s been the slogan lately. And buying locally, you’re helping your community because you’re supporting jobs.”
Spring: Fruit trees in bloom at Strite's.
Food off the farm is fresh and seasonal. It’s unprocessed, and hasn’t been sitting in storage for a week. Jon wants people to take time to know their food and know their farmer. He says to ask questions and even ask for ideas for how to use it.
Scroll down for a slideshow of pictures from the farm.
2013 Farm to Table Dinner
Meet and interact with local farmers, food producers and artisans, including Jon, at a unique open-air feast at Strite’s Orchard.
The 2013 Farm to Table Dinner is on Sunday, August 18 and is a dining experience is based around ingredients sourced directly from local farms and farmers' markets. Watch a sneak peek video of the event here.
Diners will be seated inside the marketplace of Strites’ Orchard amidst the pastoral local orchard for a family-style feast.
The evening’s meal will be prepared by award-winning Chef Jason Viscount of Bricco. The meal will represent a celebration of seasonal flavors supported by local food and beverage artisans such as Waltz Vineyards and Troegs Brewing Company.
You can get a peek at the mouth-watering menu here.
Strite is excited to welcome guests to his family orchard for the third Farm to Table. He enjoys helping people re-connect to their food and the fresh flavors of local produce.
And, best of all, you’ll be supporting a world with less cancer, as the proceeds of the event go to funding important research and support programs in the area.
Get your tickets here: www.ACSFarmToTable.org