About Don Lewis
About Don Lewis
In the 30 years since Don Lewis first began raising bees for local honey (hence the name Wild Hive Farm), his commitment to reviving grains and promoting sustainable agriculture has helped reshape the future of local grain-based agriculture in America. Today, his Wild Hive Community Grain Project features a newly expanded milling facility that has tripled capacity in the last five years. Lewis is dedicated to working with local farmers to grow heirloom grains including heirloom varieties such as emmer, red fife, and einkorn – thereby encouraging diversity and innovation. His high-quality whole grain, flour and legume products have earned him a loyal following from New York City’s leading chefs, bakers, restaurants and retail stores, not to mention food press and the management and bakers at Eataly in New York and Chicago, who are all enamored with the freshness and distinctive flavor of his stone-milled flour and grains.
The impact of Wild Hive’s operations in the region is extensive. Lewis’ project has provided much-needed infrastructure for grain farmers to clean, de-hull and grind their grains. Don’s Wild Hive model has helped to influence several other grain operations over the years that have successfully taken root in the Northeast United States. Don has been invited to share his ideas and products three times at Terra Madre, the Slow Food Conference in Turin, Italy, most recently last year’s session.
Lewis believes that “This model we have created here lays the groundwork for a regional grain-based food system, which will help bring food security to the Northeast, provide a more nutrient dense food supply, and give fair value to growers and consumers.”
When people buy from Wild Hive Farm they are participating in a sustainable grain based system that provides locally sourced, non-GMO, traditional grains from the surrounding region. Minimizing transit time and distance helps preserve the grains’ full characteristics, bringing home and professional cooks fresh, delicious flours coupled with the unique flavor of the land where they grow.