Two health junkies find a home on their health conscious farm
Every morning, Andrea Martin and Tony Kennette wake up to a 137-acre piece of property, where you’ll find lambs, chickens and fresh veggies.
The duo are the owners of Martenette Farms in Hillsborough, where they lease five of those acres. The name is a play on both of their last names.
Martenette Farms, which was founded two and a half years ago, produces mixed greens, carrots, spinach and baby kale throughout the year, and in the summer months, tomatoes, peppers, onions, and zucchini. In the next few years, they’re looking to grow more fruits. They’re currently in the midst of transitioning to fully organic.
Martin is the mastermind behind the farm, Kennette said.
“I’m out in the field following her orders,” Kennette said. “This is her brainchild.”
Martin, 35, and Kennette, 39, both are naturalists. Martin studied medicinal herbs at Bastyr University in Washington, and she’s also a massage therapist. Kennette went to school for massage therapy, and currently works as a yoga teacher. He also owns his own photography and video production company.
Kennette’s venture into the health world all stemmed from his extracurricular activities. He’s a self-proclaimed adrenaline sport junkie — he loves skateboarding, snowboarding.
“That’s why I started learning more about massage and holistic health. It started with, ‘How do I maintain my body?’ ” Kennette said.
The farm is tractor free, and most of the work is done completely by hand. They’re located on Sourland Mountain Preserve.
“We both work off the farm (during the day) so sometimes it’s just like, ‘God I can’t wait to go back to the farm,’ ” Martin said. “I love the work. It definitely has its (stressful) moments — particularly getting ready for the market and trying to race against the clock. I harvested and washed and bagged (our mixed greens) all this morning. It can be rough, but it’s also really nice.”
Martin wasn’t always health conscious. She said at 18 she was probably eating junk food and smoking too many cigarettes.
At the age of 30, she decided she needed a change. She began working on farms, and discovered she loved the environment.
“We need to know how to take care of our own bodies,” Martin said.
Martenette Farms also partners with Project P.U.B., a farm to table restaurant in Somerville. Every month, the restaurant has a different brewery take over the tap, and every season, the menu changes with fresh produce.
The chef alters the menu to focus on what Martenette’s growing.
In September, the highlight of the menu is Martenette’s lambs, Kennette said.
“What’s strange is I’m a vegetarian,” Kennette said. “So that’s how quality raised these animals are — they’re getting raised by a vegetarian.”
Kennette has two sons, who helped out around the farm last year.
“They’re 12 and 15 so they hate it,” Martin, their stepmother, said, “but then I watch them and they’re Snapchatting a picture of a lamb. It’s like OK they think it’s kind of cool. They just don’t think Dad and Andrea are very cool.”