Crops News SmartNews

Tito’s Vodka feeds employees with distillery’s urban farm

Published:

Tito’s Handmade Vodka’s Fourteen Acres Farm, located at Tito’s distillery in Austin, Texas, was created in an effort to provide employees with fresh food and encourage healthy eating.

Cultivated by a team of seven farmers and producing over 25 types of fruits and vegetables, the farm allows employees to take home fresh food on a weekly basis.

The farm is once again the inspiration for the Love, Tito’s Block to Block community garden and farm program, which, now in its fourth year, seeks to increase access to fresh and healthy produce for communities, and will launch across 30 cities throughout 2022.

Fourteen Acres Farm accommodates 74 raised beds and 16 high tunnels.

»Related: Perspective: Food access and the small farms bolstering local systems

Fourteen Acres Farm

Each week, employees have the opportunity to take home fresh produce at no cost, originally through the company’s farm share program which included weekly bags of fruits and vegetables from the farm. Now, Fourteen Acres Farm is transitioning to a weekly farmers market, bringing the farm’s offerings directly to employees.

Through the farmers market, employees will be able to select the products they are most interested in, as well as connect with farmers to learn recipes, cooking tips and tricks, and how the food is grown. The fruits and vegetables being grown include artichokes, broccoli, carrots, cucumbers, melons, mixed greens, peppers, sweet potatoes, and tomatoes.

Image courtesy of Tito’s Vodka

Over the past year, the farm has added vermiculture to its roster of capabilities, and this fall the farmers will be learning how to make bio-complete compost and liquid amendments with vermicompost, establishing an in-house soil lab, and conducting crop trials with more fruit — beginning with strawberries.

“Fourteen Acres Farm grows every day, which means our program does too. We’re ready to take on new opportunities and provide employees with even more than fresh produce,” said Kathleen Kuper, Farm Director at Tito’s Handmade Vodka. “We send them home with recipe cards, cooking tips, and insights from the farmers, and now we’ll be developing educational workshops so those employees can not only learn about the food but take that knowledge home to practice new skills in a garden they’ve grown all their own.”

»Related: Noble Research video series: ‘Regenerating the Ranch’


Love, Tito’s Block to Block

The Love, Tito’s Block to Block community garden and farm program seeks to provide fresh and healthy food to communities by working alongside local nonprofit organizations and volunteers to create green spaces, including community gardens and farms, that nurture neighborhoods and make fresh food more accessible, one block at a time.

The program began in 2019 in just three cities and grew to 25 cities in 2020, 28 cities in 2021, and this year will expand across 30+ cities nationwide.

Love, Tito’s Block to Block teams up with Kansas City Community Gardens to help revitalize and expand their oldest rent-a-plot garden, for a 20th Anniversary Makeover.

Throughout 2022, Love, Tito’s will construct new growing spaces from the ground up in Denver, CO, Indianapolis, IN, New York City, NY, and Salt Lake City, UT, in addition to making enhancements to community gardens and farms in Los Angeles, CA, Phoenix, AZ, Portland, OR, Richmond, VA, Detroit, MI, Austin, TX, and more cities across the country.

Image courtesy of Tito’s Vodka

Beyond getting their hands dirty building gardens and farms, Love, Tito’s is raising awareness for Block to Block and its nonprofit friends through a variety of local projects, including:

  • Distributing more than 200 fruit-bearing trees to community members and organizations throughout Oklahoma City
  • Providing seedlings, fertilizer, and educational materials to over 90 community gardens across the Houston Metroplex
  • Constructing a greenhouse to help provide year-round fresh produce to community members and over 600 rescue animals in need in southern New Jersey
  • Developing an outdoor studio and kitchen space at a South Chicago Farm, allowing further integration of community culinary and arts programming 
  • Creating two new community gardens and assisting in transplanting a local farm to better support a job training program in Salt Lake City

“We’re thrilled to see how much the Block to Block program continues to grow each year,” said Amy Lukken, Chief Joyologist at Tito’s Handmade Vodka. “Since the very beginning, Tito’s has made ‘doing good’ a pillar within our culture, helping out the communities around us in whatever way we can. The Block to Block program is doing just that by bringing folks together through access to fresh foods and green spaces across the country.”

Sponsored Content on AGDaily
Any views or opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect those of AGDAILY. Comments on this article reflect the sole opinions of their writers.