Diane Valden reports in The Columbia Paper
that strawberry picking resumes in a few weeks at Ancramdale's Thompson-Finch Farm, and may continue for years to come thanks to a deal with the Columbia Land Conservancy. Donald and Marnie MacLean, who have farmed the land for 35 years, were about to lose the property. But the couple took out a short-term loan of $1.5 million from Equity Trust for the land and made a deal with the Columbia Land Conservancy to help pay the loan back. The MacLeans, Equity Trust and CLC formed the Thompson-Finch Farm Collaborative, and the CLC will ultimately own the land, not the MacLeans, with the Dutchess Land Conservancy holding the conservation easement. “We wanted to do it differently; we did not want to own the land only to sell it later. We wanted to save it in perpetuity for other farmers who want to farm in Columbia County,” said Marnie MacLean. Read the full story in The Columbia Paper.