The MidAtlantic Women in Agriculture program hosted its 2023 annual Fall Farm Tour on Wednesday October 4th, including over 30 participants from locations across Maryland and Delaware. The group visited farms in both Kent and Queen Anne’s counties and a pickling boutique. The tour concluded with a lunch and afternoon spent in downtown Chestertown, Maryland.
The tour commenced at Oksana's Produce Farm & Pickling Boutique. Nestled in the heart of Chestertown, Oksana Bocharova's farm is a living testament to her lifelong love of agriculture. With roots tracing back to her childhood in the Belgorod region of Russia, Oksana inherited her love for farming and nature from her father, Yuriy. Oksana's Produce Farm is not just a venture; it's a culmination of her journey from managing a large collective farm to graduating from AgroBusiness School in Moscow and eventually realizing her dream in the United States.
The farm produces an array of fresh vegetables for local markets and Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscribers. The Pickling Boutique, an extension of Oksana's vision, showcases her passion for preserving heritage varieties of fermented foods. In the pickling boutique Oksana produces a variety of low sodium fermented products, including krauts, pickles, and vegetable salads.
Next on the agenda was Chesapeake Farms, a sprawling 3,300-acre site devoted to sustainable agricultural practices and wildlife management techniques. Chesapeake Farms serves as a hub for development, conference center, and living classroom. Attendees were immersed in learning about environmentally sound, economically viable, and socially acceptable farming practices.
As participants explored Chesapeake Farms, they gained insight into a wide range of practices and research, from innovative land management techniques to wildlife preservation efforts. The visit provided understanding of the important balance between agricultural productivity and environmental stewardship.
Lunch was hosted at the Chester River Yacht & Country Club, offering a picturesque setting for networking among participants. The Chester River Yacht & Country Club located just outside of historic Chestertown opened in 1927. In 2022, some ninety years later, the CRY&CC offers an 18-hole regulation golf course, a driving range and putting green, a retail golf shop, three piers, dock bar, a clubhouse with a restaurant and ballroom, a swimming pool, and two bocce courts.
The tour concluded with time for the attendees to explore downtown Chestertown and network with fellow Women in Agriculture. The scenic backdrop of historic Chestertown added to the overall charm of the event.
MidAtlantic Women in Agriculture is dedicated to providing knowledge and resources to women who share a passion for agriculture. Farm tours enable women to stay engaged, educated and empowered. Additionally, farm tours offer various perspectives that women can apply to their own operations.
For more information on the operations visit their websites at:
For more information on the Mid Atlantic women in agriculture program visit: https://go.umd.edu/womeninag