Joe Piotti bio photo

Joe Piotti

Owner, Sweet Earth Farm

Joe operates a mixed 200-acre farm and woodlot in Nova Scotia, managing Belted Galloway grass fed beef cattle, forest raised Berkshire pigs, pasture raised poultry, a certified organic Haskap orchard, Christmas tree lot and woodlot. Before farming, Joe worked in the investment banking industry for over 35 years. Joe’s other agricultural service work includes: serving as president of the Haskap Marketing Group, a Co-op consisting of over two dozen farmers throughout the Maritimes, he has served on the Council of the Federation of Agriculture of Nova Scotia, and chair of Haskap Canada and president of Haskap Growers Association of Nova Scotia.

Joe has been actively farming for 10 years, with his partner (Stephanie Banks) and two children (Luke and Sadie). The family is committed to regenerative farming practices and feels privileged to be working and improving the land, while producing nourishing agricultural products, helping to feed Nova Scotian families, and contributing to food security in the region.

Colleen Freake bio photo

Colleen Freake

Owner, Tidal Wild Farm

Colleen is a farmer with 12 years of experience working on farms throughout the Maritimes. She has a lasting curiosity about plants and ecological farming with a special interest in small-scale, organic and perennial systems. Colleen is a woman under 40 who came to farming as an adult and finds purpose and passion in this work to build community. Her farm is Tidal Wild Farm on the Hants Shore.

Joey Pittoello bio photo

Joey Pittoello

General Manager, Just Us! Fair Trade Coffee

Joey joined Just Us! Coffee Roasters Co-operative as a chocolatier to support his organic farming habit in 2010. He is a worker-member and is currently responsible for producer relationships and management at Just Us!. Although farming has become more of a “hobby” over the years, he continues to live the organic farming dream through the small-scale coffee growers from whom Just Us! buys their coffee. His partner Sarah and two children Mia and Lewyn live near Wolfville, Nova Scotia on their small farm.

Danny Bruce bio photo

Danny Bruce

Owner, Bruce Family Farm

Danny is the sixth generation of Bruces working his farm. He went to the Nova Scotia Agricultural School after graduating from high school. He has a mixed farm with chickens, sheep, cows, old orchard and forage. He started converting to organic farming after his first child was born in 1995. Even before he knew what organic farming was, he was interested in using as little manufactured inputs as possible. Now, as his understanding of organics has changed, he is committed to the idea of growing good quality soil in order to grow healthier and better livestock and farm products.

Wayne Edgar bio photo

Wayne Edgar

Operator, North of Nuttby Farm

Wayne and his partner Pamela operate North of Nuttby Farm, nestled among the Cobequid Hills near Earltown. Pamela has a lifelong connection to agriculture, although both have turned to full-time farming after careers in other sectors. North of Nuttby Farm has operated since 2003 and has been certified organic since 2016, being one of only three certified low bush blueberry producers in the province. For a number of years, the farm also produced mixed vegetables. At present, certified organic low bush blueberries are the focus and are marketed through social media and farm gate.

Patricia Bishop bio photo

Patricia Bishop

Owner, TapRoot Farms

Patricia is an organic farmer, entrepreneur, parent, spouse, daughter, sister and engaged community participant. She farms with her partner Josh and farm team in Port Williams, NS, located in Mi’Kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People. Since 2004 she has been using her skills and education to grow food & fibre and share it with our community. TapRoot Farms grows a wide range of vegetables, fruit, grains, forages and raises animals. The farm supplies food to a CSA community, Noggins Corner Farm Market locations and markets and various other retail outlets in Nova Scotia.

Matthew Roy bio picture

Matthew Roy

Owner, Coastal Grove Farm

Matthew and Cynthia operate Coastal Grove Farm in Upper Port La Tour (Shelburne County). Matthew is a graduate of the Stockbridge School of Agriculture at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He also holds a certificate in Permaculture Design through Colby Sawyer College and a Master Gardener designation through the University of Minnesota Extension. Matthew is the president of the Yarmouth/Shelburne County Federation of Agriculture and serves as a board member for multiple organizations, including the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture, Greenhouse Nova Scotia, and the Community Garden and Foodshare Association of Shelburne County. Matthew is also included in the first cohort of Nova Scotia journeymen to provide students with apprenticeship opportunities in the province’s new farm technician program.

Karina Shnaiderman

Institutional Procurement Project Coordinator, Organic Nova Scotia

Karina is an agricultural researcher, educator, and farm labourer. Having worked on various farms since she was 19, she is passionate about combining academic innovation with on-the-ground field work to create long term and sustainable changes within the agriculture sector. A recent newcomer to Mi’kma’ki/Nova Scotia, she is excited to work with ONS as the Institutional Procurement Coordinator and looks forward to collaborating with local organic producers/processors and post-secondary institutions, while promoting the provinces’ organic community. Karina is also working towards starting a regenerative organic farm with her partner, Rylan, focusing on perennial crops and flowers.