“If we do it right, you’re supposed to know the people that make your food,” said Jon Olinto, co-founder and chief marketing officer, of the fast-casual restaurant b.good.
With the company’s recent creation of Hannah Farm on Boston’s Long Island, the person that grows your food might be standing behind the b.good counter, your neighbor’s child, or yourself.
B.good co-founders Olinto and Anthony Ackil teamed up with the Connors Family Office, which operates Camp Harbor View on the island, to build a working farm that donates 75% of crop production to the camp and back into the community. The program is also focused on teaching campers about urban agriculture, healthy eating, entrepreneurship and teamwork.
“Jon and his team at b.good are the real thing,” said Jack Connors, co-founder and chairman of Camp Harbor View. They really care about the quality of the food they offer and they have always insisted on doing good in the communities they serve. These folks are going to make the City very proud.”
The b.good team has come a long way since they grew tomatoes in kiddie pools on top of their Brookline location. “We must’ve had 20 baby pools on the roof before we sold that location,” Olinto said. Later they grew herbs at their Hingham location and kale in Nashua New Hampshire. “The more we did, the more we took pride in it.”
Hannah Farm also welcomes the public and b.good employees to visit and get their hands dirty. “Everyone that comes and works, they want to come back because they are inspired by it,” Olinto said. “We process so much veg [sic] in the store, now all of a sudden it becomes real. It’s not just a marketing story of a farmer on the wall.”
The projected yield from Hannah Farm’s inaugural harvest is 20,000 pounds of kale, zucchini, yellow beans, green beans, beets, cherry tomatoes, romaine, and more, but next year the organizers expect to exceed 80,000 pounds of crops.
For more information about b.good’s Hannah Farm and sign up to work the land, check out the video below and visit www.bgood.com/hannahfarm.