BEDFORD, N.Y. — John Boy's Outpost , nestled in the spot where Bedford's iconic Stewart's Market reigned for decades, is the newest enterprise of John "John Boy" Ubaldo, a Pound Ridge native who reached animal husbandry through a circuitous route.
After graduating from Skidmore College as an international politics major, Ubaldo casually thought, "I'll go hang out on Wall Street for a few years." The few years turned into a dozen.
Losing several friends and relatives in the 9/11 tragedy was an eye-opener. Ubaldo decided to make a major lifestyle change. He returned to Pound Ridge, "got a few ducks, some geese and 25 chickens, just to have something to do." He teamed with Pound Ridge's Jane Silbersher, to organize the Pound Ridge Farmers Market, where he sold his own eggs, smoked meats, fish and sausages. Ubaldo was hooked.
Next he had to find a real farm. "I looked at 55 farms around the Hudson Valley. One day an agent sent me a photo of a back porch in Cambridge, New York. It belonged to a farm I'd wanted to buy years earlier — it was finally on the market." Ubaldo was sold!
Today he farms his own 185 acres and leases another 120 from a neighbor. He has 100 head of Black Angus cattle, 130 Berkshire pigs, 220 ducks and 1400 chickens. The farm grows and grinds all its own feed, using only non-GMO (genetically modified) seed, no pesticides, no herbicides and only USA-manufactured vitamins. "We grind fresh weekly for our animals. It's a probiotic regimen," he explained.
After ten years of purveying edibles to local upscale restaurants and selling his products at weekly farmers markets, Ubaldo decided to heed the complaints of customers who "ran out before the end of the week." He established John Boy’s Outpost, which he describes as "a 1500-square-foot non-toxic space where you can buy everything you need: Black Angus beef, three kinds of bacon, four kinds of sausage, ducks, duck eggs, yogurt, tons of vegetables, spices, honey, and cheese from 100% grass-fed cows.'"
Ubaldo finds that the most difficult part of being a farmer is "doing what you have to do when you need to do it, not when you feel like doing it." Is there a relationship between farming and Wall Street? "Yes! The level of work going in and finding success is just the same, but Wall Street is an easier and much less stressful place to work."
John Boy's Outpost is located at 1 Court Rd., 205-3900, http://johnboysoutpost.com/.
To order your Thanksgiving turkey direct from his Pound Ridge farm, call 646-4263 or email firstname.lastname@example.org .
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