Sprout Creek Farm Shut Down, Animals Will Be ‘Humanely Managed’
Sprout Creek Farm in Poughkeepsie has ceased all operations as of Friday.
The 200-acre site on Lauer Rd. in Poughkeepsie has been in operation for over 25 years, serving as a non-profit educational farm for children and adults. After financial difficulties threatened the closing of the farm, Marist College stepped in to take over control and offer financial support.
In February Marist responded to accusations of pulling their funding, forcing the farm to close. In a statement, the college said that issues not disclosed to them and other "unanticipated expenditures" were making them reassess their arrangement with the farm. In a statement on Sprout Creek Farm's website, challenges with the COVID-19 outbreak were blamed for more financial difficulties that has ultimately made their business model "unsustainable."
Sprout Creek Farm thanked Marist for their support, saying it would have closed down in January of 2018 had the college not steeped in to help.
Facebook rumors began swirling on Friday about the fate of the animals currently at Sprout Creek Farm. A posting from someone claiming to be associated with the farm said that the animals were due to be picked up by a slaughterhouse on Tuesday unless they were adopted. The Facebook post went viral, with 4-H organizations and animal rescues scrambling to find homes for the animals which, reportedly, included pregnant goats and cows.
Sprout Creek Farm released a statement early Saturday morning, responding to the current situation of the animals.
It is a priority to Sprout Creek Farmers that all animals are relocated to new homes and given the best care that local farmers can give them. All efforts are being made to ensure that the transitions are accomplished with the emphasis on animal safety, health and welfare. We have taken great pride ensuring that the animals have been very well looked after and that the care and attention we have given them will continue.
The land that had been occupied by Sprout Creek Farm is currently protected by a conservation easement. This means that any future owner would need to operate a farm for agricultural and educational programming.