Agricultural land contributes significantly to Topsfield’s open space and rural character. Topsfield has a number of properties listed as Chapter 61A and other smaller properties on which agricultural activities are conducted. Essentially passive agricultural uses are found in some of the tree farms located within the Town. Active farming is represented by Valley View Farm, Holiday Tree Farm, Connemara House Farm, Red Pine Tree Farm, Natural Way Farm, and Alfalfa Farm. These farms are dedicated to a variety of agricultural and horticultural operations, including cheese, honey and maple syrup operations, apple orchards, berries, organic vegetables, a winery and Christmas trees. Richardson’s Dairy, based in Middleton, utilizes Topsfield land to grow corn that supports its herds of dairy cattle. Many large open properties produce hay that is cut, baled and distributed by local farmers.
On a smaller scale, a number of local residents engage in the production of agricultural products, including eggs, honey, maple syrup, and organic vegetables that are sold at farmers’ markets and through distributors. Valley View Farm partners with First Light Farm in Hamilton as a CSA collection point. The Agricultural Commission, Topsfield Garden Club, and Historical Society promote agricultural history and the grow-local movement through school programs, participation in the Topsfield Fair and other educational activities. The Essex Agricultural Society has partnered with Northeast Harvest to promote locally grown products.