Over here at TheDigitel Beaufort, we love to profile local businesses, so on Monday we visited Urbie West at Rest Park Farms.
Urbie West is a different kind of farmer.
It's not that he's inexperienced: he grew up working on his family farm and he is the fifth generation to work the family land in Seabrook and his son, Ashby, continues the tradition as the sixth generation. It's not that he doesn't understand farming: his customers and the produce show that he's quite accomplished. West is different in that he took a slightly different route to becoming a full-time farmer, though he has spent years working on his family's land, it was only last year that Urbie turned to farming full-time.
Rest Park FarmLast year, Urbie reinvigorated the Rest Park brand, originally used by his family to market the crops grown on the W. H. McLeod & Son farm, located on the Whale Branch in Seabrook. Urbie spent last year building his brand and delivering produce from his farm in Earhardt, South Carolina. If you visited the Beaufort farm markets, you likely saw Urbie manning a booth full of his produce. If you dine at Breakwater or Bricks on Boundary, you've enjoyed the fruit of his labor.
In 2012, Urbie and Rest Park took over the Pinckney's Produce CSA and relocated to the McLeod land in Seabrook. There, on 32 cultivated acres, Urbie, Ashby, and a few employees grow tomatoes, squash, carrots, potatoes, lettuce, arugula, and much more. Members of the CSA pay an upfront fee and receive a share of the produce from the farm.
Deliveries in Beaufort arrive on Friday and can be picked up at the Omni on Boundary or at Grayco on Ladys Island. Dataw residents can pick up their shares at the Community Center.
Rhode Island Red Laying HensIn addition to the produce, Urbie and his cousin, Chip McLeod, relaunched Sea Island Poultry, another old family brand, and will offer eggs from their flock of 100 laying hens in the coming months.
Urbie's goal with the farm and with the CSA is to share his passion of farming and local food. Though Beaufort has many fresh, local, sustainable food options, many people don't know about the variety and availability of fresh produce. Urbie uses no herbicides and only uses pesticides if there is no other option. While not certified organic, Urbie uses sustainable farming practices and crop rotation to ensure the land will be productive for years to come.
Red Fire LettucePinckney's Produce CSA recently announced prorated shares for the rest of the season. If you're interested in joining this week, the price for the rest of the season is $180 for the small share, $230 for the medium, $330 for the large, and $430 for the extra large. You cannot take advantage of this offer via their website, you must contact them directly at (843) 321-8344 or e-mail Katie Thompson at firstname.lastname@example.org
Urbie has also agreed to give away a medium CSA share to one of our subscribers. To enter the contents, make sure you are our friend on Facebook, then click the CSA Giveaway Tab and enter your information for the contest. If you're not our friend, then click the Like button to reveal the entry form. Entries are only valid for delivery to the Omni, Grayco, or pick up at Rest Park Farm. If you share this post with your Facebook Friends, we'll give you another entry into the contest. Make sure to use the Share button at the bottom of the post so we can give you credit.