Meet our friends at Finca Tres Robles, an urban farm in the heart of Houston. We met Tommy, their primary farmer, Co-Founder and General Manager several years ago at the annual conference for Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA). Our friendship and partnership is a sustaining force through the challenges and celebrations that come with farming. Michael and Tommy collaborate on a regular basis to share tips on how to grow, market, and sell our crops, as well as just talk about how we are doing overall.
Finca Tres Robles grows herbs, fruits, and vegetables for individuals and families in the neighborhood and surrounding areas. Finca is located in the center of the city, inside the 610 Loop, which makes it is very accessible for customers. They have a successful Saturday morning farm stand and you can also find them at local farmers markets. They primarily grow produce — all kinds of greens and veggies. On a regular basis they buy meat and eggs from us to resell to their customers. Someone might come pick up a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture/Farm Share) box with their veggies, and they can buy our sausage and chicken at their farm stand, as well.
When Covid hit, many local restaurants had to shut down for a time, and so restaurant workers were out of work; owners and chefs were out of work; and food grown for restaurants wasn’t able to be sold. In response to this, several farms (including Finca and Whitehurst Heritage Farms) and chefs joined forces to put together and distribute food boxes for the restaurant industry staff. Whitehurst was able to provide 3,000 pounds of kale and 1,500 pounds of other produce items. This goes to show how we collaborate together and how tight-knit our relationships are in the farming and food communities.
Most recently, we collaborated with Finca after the recent Texas winter storm — the "snowpocalypse" in February of 2021 that caused many to be without power and suffer through having broken pipes and flooding in their homes and businesses. Along with that, farms experienced a large loss of crops due to the temperature remaining well below freezing for several days. At Whitehurst, we lost 90% of the crops that we had already planted for the spring.
After everything thawed out, at the end of that first week, Tommy, his brother Daniel and several other team members from Finca came to our farm and spent an entire day to help us replant thousands of plants. Their expertise as farmers was invaluable, as time was a very important factor in our ability to bounce back from this loss. The connection, understanding and camaraderie among farmers is truly beyond words. We are so grateful for our Tommy and the team at Finca Tres Robles.
Looking to get fresh local food in Houston? You can stop by the Finca Tres Robles Saturday market farm stand and find our products! https://www.fincatresrobles.org/
This is the first in a series of blog posts about our partners in the community. We are proud to collaborate closely with other local farms, chefs, restaurants, and businesses in the food, farming and wellness industries.