On a warm summer night on the island of Martha’s Vineyard, just off the coast of Massachusetts, a random mix of friends gathered for an alfresco, locally sourced meal. After an inspiring conversation about the land and the sea, former film producer Nevette Previd decided it was time to connect folks to the unique food culture of the Vineyard – from source to production. This is how her creative and ever-changing business, Farm. Field. Sea. was born.
Tell us about Farm. Field. Sea. What do you do?
We create experiences that connect eaters directly to the food producers – local farmers, fisherman, oyster cultivators and food artisans of Martha’s Vineyard. Our hands-on events inspire people to think differently about their food and the people behind it’s story. We work with local like-minded organizations to help increase access to local foods via “Farmer to Chef” events.
Our events are open to the public. We also create custom family and group outings as well as business retreats.
Why did you choose Martha’s Vineyard as the location for your business?
Martha’s Vineyard, aside from it being my home, is a place like no other. We’re known for our beaches but the island’s real soul lies within its rich history of agriculture and fishing.
With a year-round population of only 17,000 (which swells to 170,000 in the summer), the Island has over 42 farms that sell fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, honey, and cheese; 16 (and growing) oyster cultivators and generations of fishermen and shellfish purveyors. And, as of this year, a new kelp farm!
That being said, you still need to be an insider to nab the days first catch, to learn about where shellfish have been seeded for a quick bushel of clams or to find out who is growing the most succulent carrots! That’s where Farm.Field.Sea. comes in.
Can you talk about the importance of culinary tourism and its impact on local farms?
We believe that sustainable Culinary Tourism will foster economic and community development for Martha’s Vineyard’s agricultural, aquaculture, fishing and local food & drink purveyors.
By creating unique and intimate environments for the island’s producers to directly interact with the people who eat their food, tourists and locals learn about the who, what, where and why of local food production. This gives producers access to more opportunities – from additional revenue streams to having a new and consistent marketing and public relations platform to promote their business and food.
Who are some of your partners and collaborators?
Our team of collaborators grows every year. Our goal is to partner with as many of the farms, shellfish cultivators, fishermen, food artisans, chefs and food influencers as we can!
We partner often with Morning Glory Farm, North Tabor Farm, The Grey Barn and Farm, Honeysuckle Oysters, Menemsha Fish House, Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary, and the Martha’s Vineyard Shellfish Group.
What are some of your most popular adventures?
One of our most popular events is the Vineyard Food & Farm Trail. Guests tour 3 farms and one fishing operation. We snack and learn along the way, then enjoy a communal local lunch of the foods we experienced along the way with the farmers we just met.
This year we are going to the ‘wild corners’ of the island – adventuring with Juli Vanderhoop of the Orange Peel Bakery. We’re going to explore the Wampanoag Tribe’s culture via their traditions and relationship with the land. Then, we’re heading over to Chappaquiddick to spend the day with the young farmers at Slip Away Farm for farm fresh pizzas.
In addition, we have added oyster farm tours with Cottage City Oysters and fishing education with Buddy Vanderhoop of Tomahawk Charters – talk about a story! His grandfather is credited with killing the original Moby Dick!
Thanks for sharing this with us Nevette. Is there anything else you’d like to add?
We hope foodies, adventure travelers and folks who just want to get to know the Vineyard in a different way will come check us out.
We are a small nimble operation allowing us to be closely attached to our purpose and values; to co-create an island where our local food producers and educators can flourish and to celebrate the love and joy of food through the story of the people behind the food on our plates.
Farm. Field. Sea.
We have some great ideas sprouting up so watch this space for more delicious finds.