OSU Pres. Gee stops in Morrow County
By LeAnne Gompf -
The purpose behind The Ohio State University President Dr. E. Gordon Gee’s annual state tour is simple. He loves the state of Ohio and has made a commitment to visit at least half of the counties during his “summer tour” to see first hand how the university’s land grant partnerships are working.
“The state is our campus,” Gee said. “We need to be in every corner of the state to connect our institution with the hearts and minds of Ohioans. As a land-grant university, that is our calling and responsibility.”
His stop August 1 included the working market farm of Matt and Corinne Gompf who own and operate Heritage Harvest Farms on County 46 near Galion.
Matt Gompf graduated from OSU in 2001 and is the current FFA Advisor for Mount Gilead High School. He and his family are raising vegetables for local markets and building a community supported agriculture business. This is the second year for market gardening that grows everything from arugula to zucchini. They try to grow things that are different that other market vendors do not have.
Matt commented, ”Starting out as a young couple and acquiring a small farm was the first step in marketing fresh and all natural vegetables. What you see today is the culmination of an eight-year dream. We want to make a connection with our customers so they know where their food is coming from.”
While Heritage Harvest is not a certified organic farm they do practice organic farming. They also participate in the CSA (Community Supporter Agriculture) a pre-payment program that is a direct relationship between the buyer and the grower. You receive a weekly or bi-weekly supply of everything in season for a specified amount.
“Everything we sell is grown on our farm; we do not buy or resell from the produce auction.” commented Corinne. “We also are licensed by the Morrow County Health Department to sell farm fresh eggs.”
Matt and Corinne were excited that President Gee chose their farm as part of the summer tour.
“As an alumnus and as an agriculture instructor I think it is important for the president of our land-grant university to be out in the community showing interest,” Gompf said.
You can find Heritage Harvest Farms at both the Galion (Tuesdays) and Mount Vernon (Saturdays) farm markets through the end of September.