HARTFORD, Conn. — As you look to express your affection to those you love this Valentine’s Day, consider supporting those who are passionate about their work – Connecticut’s 5,500 family farms. Connecticut’s farmers and agricultural businesses offer consumers an option for safe, affordable, socially distanced shopping and dining experiences.
“The passion our producers have for their work shines through in all they do,” said Agriculture Commissioner Bryan P. Hurlburt. “From flowers and wine to artisan chocolates or a four-course Connecticut Grown meal, our farm stands, farmers’ markets, and farm to table restaurants throughout the state can help you make this an occasion to remember.”
Connecticut’s diverse agricultural community is ready to supply you with unique, delicious, and fragrant gifts. Here are some ideas to get you started, but the possibilities are endless.
- Roses are the traditional flower selection on Valentine’s Day, but what about a gift that keeps on giving? A membership to a cut flower CSA will provide your sweetheart with a fragrant, seasonal bouquet each week while the CSA runs.
- Oysters are the perfect appetizer before you devour your entrée. Enjoy them grilled with garlic butter or raw on the half shell – the choice is yours. Either way, your date will be impressed.
- Steak is one of the leading food choices on Valentine’s Day. You can grill at home or visit your favorite farm to table restaurant that sources locally. Other popular protein options include lamb, chicken, and duck.
- Root vegetables, such as carrots, winter squash, potatoes, microgreens, and even tomatoes are available in the middle of winter to create a vegetarian dish or a complimentary side dish for a fully Connecticut Grown meal.
- Dairy is an easy way to support local farms by using butter, milk, or cream to complete a favorite dish, or pickup artisan chocolates made with local milk. If you are cheese connoisseur, they have you covered too with a number of Connecticut dairy farms making their own cheeses from mozzarella to blue cheese.
- Wine and beer produced with Connecticut Grown fruit, hops, wheat, and barley adds another dimension to your dining experience. From sparkling reds to pale ales, there is an option for every palate.
- Goat milk products, including soap and lotion, are an affordable luxury for those who like to be pampered.
You can find all of these products and more, by visiting CTGrownMap.com to locate a farm stand, farm store, or farmers’ market near you.
The Connecticut Department of Agriculture (CT DoAg) mission is to foster a healthy economic, environmental, and social climate for agriculture by developing, promoting, and regulating agricultural businesses; protecting agricultural and aquacultural resources; enforcing laws pertaining to domestic animals; and promoting an understanding among the state’s citizens of the diversity of Connecticut agriculture, its cultural heritage, and its contribution to the state’s economy. For more information, visit www.CTGrown.gov.
–Connecticut Department of Agriculture
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