Auction revives small vegetable farms in Pennsylvania — and helps build Amish communities
September 2, 2021
In box trucks and horse-drawn wagons, Amish farmers and others carry corrugated crates of bright vegetables and fruits to an open-sided auction house in Oxford, Chester County, Pa., to meet buyers for grocers, restaurants, and caterers three mornings a week.
It seems like a scene out of time. But the Oxford Produce Auction LLC, owned by 40 Amish farmers, is only 10 years old. Just off U.S. 1 highway from Philadelphia to Baltimore, the auction signals a surprising shift in the 300-year-old farm communities of western Chester and southern Lancaster Counties, where young families are making a living from smaller pieces of ground, instead of leaving the region or seeking wage jobs.
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