Bay State Milling Co. acquires Colorado-based CleanDirt Farm
April 4, 2017
QUINCY, Mass. – Bay State Milling Co. has acquired CleanDirt Farm, a market leading organic and conventional millet sourcing and processing operation in Sterling, Colo.
CleanDirt Farm has been an essential connection in the Bay State Milling supply chain for over 10 years based on shared values, devotion to promoting a sustainable and safe food system and trust-based and time-tested grower relationships.
The CleanDirt Farm commitment of offering high-quality, healthy and affordable products is a natural addition to Bay State Milling's trusted family of ingredients. By directly investing in this critical link in a rapidly growing specialty ingredient supply chain, Bay State Milling can offer increased security, transparency and authenticity to its customers at a time when consumers want to know who is producing their food and from where it originates.
CleanDirt Farm has a rich history as a multi-generational, family-owned enterprise built on the homestead of Rob Knowles and Meryl Stern. Together, they ventured into the business to promote millet as a nutritious and sustainable ancient grain and to raise the level of industry processing standards, a crucial gap in the millet supply chain at that time. Bay State Milling will work with Knowles and Stern to integrate the local team and transition the business into its growing array of specialty plant-based supply chains.
"Meryl and I are confident that Bay State Milling will continue to support the professional and personal relationships that we have worked hard to establish with both our customers on the one hand and our supplier/farmers on the other. We have always placed a high value on these relationships and believe that our success is a direct result of all the friends we have made along the way," Knowles said. "For the next six months, we will continue working in the office as key players in the ownership transition from CleanDirt Farm to Bay State Milling. We intend to make this transition as seamless as possible for all involved."
Bay State Milling offers hulled white proso, whole white proso and whole red proso millets in both conventional and organic varieties and certified non-GMO and gluten-free flours. The Colorado-based operation supports a large contingency of local growers who value millet as a sustainable rotation crop.
The combination of Bay State's Platteville, Colo., flour mill and the CleanDirt Farm business will provide an opportunity to further partner with existing growers as well as new growers on their full crop rotations.
Millet is a versatile food ingredient with a mild flavor profile and balanced nutrition. While predominantly used as a whole seed topping or inclusion today, the company's skilled research and development team is evaluating additional functional properties which can extend its usage into a wider array of plant-based foods, while seeking opportunities to improve supply chain returns through the development of varieties with enhanced benefits to growers, manufacturers and consumers.
Whole millet, whole millet flour, sprouted whole millet and sprouted whole millet flour will be available through Bay State Milling's Bolingbrook, Ill., and Woodland, Calif., locations.
"Bay State Milling continues to be a leader in building and cultivating organic and conventional specialty supply chains that will fuel the next generation of grain-based foods. As a fifth-generation, family-owned company that balances both traditional and progressive values in a rapidly changing world, we are honored to carry on the commitment to deliver an uncompromisingly high-quality product that provides value to both the consumer and the grower. We are excited to add our product development and varietal development capabilities to this supply chain to expand the market for millet — a tasty, nutrition-packed, resilient, and affordable grain that more consumers should enjoy," Peter Levangie, president and CEO said.
For more information on Bay State Milling, visit http://www.baystatemilling.com or call 1-800-553-5687. ❖