Fresh corn on the cob hit local farm stalls

Chicopee – Sweetness and Trinity are the buzzwords lately at McKinstry’s Market Garden in Chicopee. These are the first two varieties of sweet corn that are now picked and sold at the farm stand on Montgomery Street.

“It was a tough start to the season,” said Willard “Bill” McKinstry, now the patriarch of the family farm. He explained that the cooler temperatures in April hampered the growth of the earliest varieties. “You will have rows of Trinity where some plants have grown and some have not grown next to each other.”

McKinstry’s Market Garden began selling corn on July 3, just in time for the holiday weekend. The retail corn bin was fully stocked Monday afternoon.

The McKinstries planted about 150 acres of sweet corn in their fields in Chicopee, Granby and Hadley.

During the week, four farm workers collect around 80 cases of corn per day. One case contains five dozen ears of corn. An additional pickup is added on weekends.

Bill McKinstry predicts about three more weeks of patchy growth for the early varieties before things return to normal and the late varieties mature.

Currently, the ears are selling for 67 cents, a bargain compared to the $ 1.25 / ear McKinstry saw in the Hartford area.

About Quinton Walls

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