Red Hen Baking Co. in Middlesex has developed a partnership with a mill and farm 150 miles away in Les Cedre, Quebec.
Les Fermes Longpres, operated by the Dewavrin family, is a 1,500-acre organic farm growing wheat, sunflower seeds, corn, buckwheat and soybeans. The farm uses its own seed, saved on the farm, for nearly all of its crops and is developing several new varieties of wheat and other crops.
In the fall, fall, Les Fermes Longpres began operating a roller mill in a new venture named Moulin des Cedres; it processes the 400 acres of wheat grown annually at the farm. It plans to partner with just a few bakeries that it can work closely with, and Red Hen is the first U.S. partner.
In late November, Red Hen began using Moulin des Cedre flour in all its baguettes. Starting this month, the mill is prepared to supply Red Hen with 7,000 pounds of flour per week.
“All of our grain will be sourced within 150 miles of the bakery,” said Randy George, co-owner and Red Hen founder.
Red Hen has been a pioneer in using Vermont-grown grain. Its Cyrus Pringle and Crossett Hill breads are made with grain grown on two Vermont farms, but it is already buying all the flour that those two operations can supply.
Red Hen started in Duxbury in 1999 and is now in Middlesex, operating a popular café alongside its wholesale bread bakery. It bakes and delivers certified organic bread throughout Vermont seven days a week.