Update Purchaser of Williamstown Farm Declines to Discuss Deal

Update Purchaser of Williamstown Farm Declines to Discuss Deal

The Green River Farms property in Williamstown has recently changed hands, but the new owner remains tight-lipped about the acquisition. The farm, which had been on the market for several years, was sold this week, yet the purchaser has chosen not to disclose any details regarding future plans for the property.

On Monday, the real estate agent responsible for listing the Green River Farms property in South Williamstown confirmed the deal had been finalized. However, inquiries were redirected to an employee of Understanding Agriculture, an Alabama-based farm consulting company.

Morgan Hartman, a consultant listed on Understanding Agriculture’s website, responded to an email on Tuesday. He mentioned that a press release would be issued in the coming weeks, after which he would be available for an interview. Despite this, Hartman clarified that Understanding Agriculture was not the actual purchaser of the property.

Hartman continued to withhold the identity of the buyer and the intended use of the farm. He stated, “Neither Understanding Ag, LLC, nor any of its constituent members purchased Green River Farms.” He further explained that when he used the term “our,” he was referring to the actual owners and management of the farm, but he did not reveal who these owners were.

According to the Registry of Deeds website, the new owner is a corporate entity named Green River Regenerative Farm Inc., which acquired the property for $1.9 million. The Secretary of State’s website lists this company at 66 West St. in Pittsfield, with Dirk Schultze of Wisconsin Dells, Wis., as the sole officer.

In 2010, Franklin Lewis from Florida purchased the farm for a reported $1.5 million. Lewis’ Farmland Enterprises LLC is listed on the town’s tax roll as the owner of three parcels: a 65-acre parcel on the west side of Cold Spring Road (Route 7), just south of the Mount Greylock Regional School campus, and two contiguous parcels on the east side of Cold Spring Road, both with Green River Road addresses, one measuring 84 acres and the other 94 acres. The total 244 acres and associated buildings, primarily at 2480 Green River Road, have an assessed value of $778,786.

Last year, the Berkshire Eagle reported that Lewis was advertising the 244 acres for sale with an asking price of $2.75 million.

Understanding Agriculture describes itself on its website as a group of “real farmers and ranchers who combine decades of experience to help our clients successfully implement regenerative agricultural and ecological principles that replace the input-intensive, agricultural model to enable sustained profitable farming and ranching operations.” There is no information on the website about the consulting firm owning or purchasing any other farms.

The Natural Resources Defense Council defines regenerative farming as a philosophy of farming and ranching “in harmony with nature.” Practitioners of regenerative farming take a broader view of their role in the world, especially in terms of soil and nutrient cycles. This approach contrasts with the industrial agricultural system that dominates Western food and fiber supply chains, which incentivizes practices that promote soil erosion, nutrient runoff, harmful algal blooms, and monocropping, among other environmental issues.

The mystery surrounding the new ownership of Green River Farms continues to intrigue the local community. With the farm’s significant acreage and historical value, many are eager to learn about the future plans for this property. However, until the promised press release is issued, the details remain under wraps.

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