Steadfast Farm planted its roots in Mesa in the master-planned community of Eastmark nearly three years ago, but has recently expanded to include a coffee trailer and farm store, both now open seven days a week.
Owner Erich Schultz said the idea of integrating a farm as part of a large community is a concept that appeals to both the developer and the residents.
“It’s a different type of amenity,” said Schultz. “It’s something other than golf courses and pools and it reconnects people with where their food comes from.”
While only one acre in size, the farm yields an array of organic produce including salad mix, carrots, green onions, micro greens, and even bouquets of flowers, all of which are available for purchase in its adjacent farm store.
Originally, the farm store was only open on select days with limited hours, but has since transitioned to being open seven days a week for 12 hours each day, utilizing a self-serve kiosk for convenience.
“We want to be a staple,” said Schultz. “We know people are still going to go to the grocery store and we can’t provide everything, but if we are able to supply a little bit of food, we want to be a resource for the community.”
Not only does the store provide fresh produce from the farm, but shoppers can also purchase products from other local business, including Queen Creek Olive Mill, Benny Blanco Tortillas, Hayden Flour Mills, Sonoran Pasta, and Proof Bread.
“We’re trying to build a local economy and support other local businesses the way we want to be supported,” said Schultz. “We’re trying to tell our story but we’re also trying to tell other people’s story at the same time.”
The farm also supplies salad mix and fresh herbs for the Handlebar Diner restaurant, located just steps away from the farm in the Eastmark Community.
In an effort to offer another farm-based amenity, in April, Steadfast Farm partnered with Jason and Vanessa Hopkins, who owned a coffee trailer formerly known as Wander Coffee.
The two businesses joined forces to create Steadfast Farm Coffee, which is now permanently parked right next to the farm store.
Since the partnership, the coffee trailer has added outdoor tables, chairs, and umbrellas allowing people a place to sit and enjoy their coffee.
The menu not only includes many eclectic espresso drinks such as a rose cappuccino, lavender latte, or Mexican mocha, but also added pastries from Rise Up Bakery and Proof Bread, and variety of freshly made breakfast tacos, which Schultz said have been a hit.
“Adding breakfast tacos was something I wanted to do for a while,” said Schultz. “It has brought in a lot more business than we expected.”
The tacos bring together ingredients from other local businesses including brisket from Caldwell BBQ, a vegan taco filling made by The Uprooted Kitchen, salsa from Upgrade Salsa, and tortillas from Benny Blanco.
“It’s all about the synergy,” said Schultz. “You can come here, get a coffee, eat breakfast, and walk around and enjoy the farm.”
Future plans for the farm include building a brick-and-mortar coffee shop with indoor seating and continuing to expand food options for the residents of Eastmark and surrounding neighborhoods.
“We want to be a place where people can hang out and build community,” said Schultz.