Mead Orchards currently grows approximately 40 varieties of apples, as well as peaches, plums, pears, cherries, berries, and assorted vegetables. Originally known as White Clay Creek Orchards, the property was purchased by G. Gordon Mead in 1916, as a diversified farm with small dairy, chickens, hogs and a variety of grain and fruit crops. Gordon’s son, Sid, took over the farm in 1959 and began to specialize in wholesale apple crops. Now in its third generation, grandson Chuck Mead began managing the farm in the 80’s and has expanded to include vegetables, a retail market on site and participation at farmers markets in the Hudson Valley.
Mead Orchards joined Red Tomato’s Eco Apple program in 2015. With an emphasis on increased soil fertility, erosion prevention, cover crops and drip irrigation Mead Orchards agricultural practices were a natural fit for the program.
In 2019 Chuck sold the orchard and passed the torch of leadership onto new farm manager Joe Nuciforo. Joe has been working his way up in the agriculture industry since age 14, and today he represents the new generation of young farmers. Joe has furthered Mead’s participation in our Eco program, adding certified Eco Peaches, and has begun growing their presence at farmer markets. The Mead family remains on the farm and continues to provide invaluable wisdom and guidance to the team.
Scott Blasdell, the new owner of Mead Orchards, will preserve the community staple that Chuck and his predecessors built. “Our goal is to keep all the great elements of Mead in place, as we explore creative ways to get our amazing fruit to as many people as possible,” says Scott. “As I’m still working full time in Manhattan, I’m leaving the day to day operation in Joe and Chuck’s very capable hands.”