Think back to all the major moments in your life. Engagements, weddings, baby showers, graduations, birthdays and the list goes on and on. Each of these moments triggered an emotion in you with lasting memories. In fact, you’re probably smiling right now just thinking about it. Celebrated with giggles, smiles, and even some tears, no moment was too big or too small. In fact, there was likely a form of beauty soaking up the essence of these moments; flowers. Can you close your eyes and see the gorgeous arrangements from your wedding or the moment your parents handed you that vibrant bouquet after your last moment as a high schooler? Whatever the memory, it was most likely surrounded by flowers. You see, there’s a reason and purpose behind everything, a motto we follow here at Where Food Comes From. Our Certified American Grown farmers are cultivators of beauty and being part of your special moments makes it all worth it. This week we introduce you to Kate and Rand Lindhorst from Bluhen Acres. Sit back, relax, and smell the Zinnias and Dahlias as we dive into their story.
In early 2018, Kate and her husband, along with their three children, purchased a 30-acre farm In Nichols, New York. The young girls had a love for horses and with the amount of land there was a perfect opportunity to explore. It was also an opportunity for Rand, Kate’s husband, to reunite with what he loved to do, working with cattle. Shortly after the move, Kate realized how much land they weren’t utilizing, and she sought out to find her own calling, a way she could connect with the land. As she looks back over the years, Kate says she’s not sure if she found the flowers or if they found her. Whatever the case it “grew” into something larger than she imagined.
Fast forward to 2020 and Kate is growing what she loves and she’s able to share them with her community by way of a flower shop. Bluhen Acres grows multiple varieties of cut flowers, while also offering a full range of wedding services such as bulk buckets, flower bars, and a la cart selections. They transform any wedding into an array of visual beauty. Even if you’re not planning a wedding, they offer specialty grab-and-go bouquets and 4-week subscription service that is filled with lush summer flowers. Who doesn’t love having flowers all the time? If you need a vase, no problem! They have a beautiful selection you can handpick for your arrangements.
2020 has been a bit of a turning point for Kate and her family. This year they decided it was time to get a little more serious about how they present their business to the public. Thrilled about what they grow, where they grow, and the way they grow, they knew getting verified was the next logical step. They wanted to share their story and show the community how they hold their flowers to a higher standard. The best way to do that was to become Certified American Grown. Kate and Rand wanted people to feel proud when they bought from Bluhen Acres and buying Certified American Grown adds to that sense of pride. It’s a contribution to the local economy and community, but also the farmers who work tirelessly to be good stewards of the land that they’ve been entrusted with.
Seeing that Certified American Grown label plants a seed (so to speak) of pride for the consumer knowing that they have helped a domestic business. As consumers start questioning and seeking out answers about where products come from, we begin to gather a deeper understanding of the importance of source of origin from everything from our food to the gorgeous flowers that fill our homes and celebrations. Being part of that conversation is something that Bluhen Acres is passionate about!
When people are passionate about what they do, seeking to make their product the best that it can be becomes second nature. Verification is no longer just about food. Instead, it includes a range of other products. In 2013, the American Grown Flowers & Foliage Task Force was formed and the following year they partnered with us at Where Food Comes From to conduct the verification of their program. Like many of the third-party verification programs we highlight, this one is no different. CAG requires an audit process, which Kate and Rand completed to receive certification. This assures consumers that the flowers with the CAG logo are grown and assembled in the U.S. Today, this program verifies millions of flowers each year, including those at Bluhen Acres.
Kate and Rand are a hardworking couple who found happiness and connection through cultivation and sustainability. Their dream of spreading joy through their flowers led them to their commitment to cultivate transparency with their consumers. The backbone of Bluhen Acres, along with their three children, is what brings excitement to their life. So, to answer the question why they verify? That’s simple, the look on someone’s face when you hand them a fresh cut bouquet is why they do it, every lasting memory, because being a part of your moments is unforgettable, and to gain trust in consumers through a verified label is important to them.
If you want to learn more about Kate and Rand, visit Bluhen Acres.