All-Natural Heirloom Pickles • Relishes • Salsas • Fruit Jams & Pepper Jellies

Fifth generation family farmers Bill and Judie Croft

Bill and Judie both grew up in farming families with the lifestyle deeply ingrained in their upbringing. As children, they assisted with farm duties — milking cows, feeding animals, collecting eggs, building and mending fences, checking cows and calves, shucking corn, and looking after sheep during lambing season in the harsh January winters. Bill grew up on his family’s farm which dates back to the mid 1700s.

How "The Pickle Factory" began

Bill and Judie married in 1995 and continued their lifestyle on Bill’s family farm. In 1994, Judie found herself with an abundance of canned goods from her garden and Bill suggested she sell them at the local farmers market in Staunton. She did and was delighted to return home with over $300 profit after selling each jar for $3. She soon became hooked, depleting her stash that season and eagerly awaiting the next crop to can.

Over the next three years, Judie’s sales steadily grew until in 1999, they installed a commercial kitchen in the basement of our home. Bill took their famous Sweet German Pickles to the Charlottesville market and landed large orders while Judie continued to sell at the Staunton market. That year, a couple from the Sugar Loaf Craft Shows approached them wondering if they were interested in selling at larger craft shows. They were, and thus the MeadowCroft Pickle Factory was born.

By 2004, they expanded to three different high-end craft show groups, and their sales continued to soar. In 2014 Judie launched their first website, expanding their reach across the United States. Today MeadowCroft Farm products are locally available at the Cheese Shop in Stuarts Draft, The Meating Place on Middlebrook Road, Valley Pike on Rt. 11 near Harrisonburg. and the Greenwood Market at Crozet.

The Inn at MeadowCroft

In 2013, restoration began on a two-story, hand-hewn log cabin that stood on the property dating back to 1820. Shortly after starting the renovation, Bill and Judie purchased a 1795 two-story log cabin in nearby Middlebrook, with intentions on creating a bed and breakfast. They dismantled the original log cabin, log by log, and had it transported to Swoope. As Judie anxiously watched every exterior board being removed, she thought, “If only these walls could talk!”

The renovations and updates to the adjoining cabins were completed in 2018. The Inn at MeadowCroft opened to delight guests with this beautiful, historic property.

Sadly Judie passed in 2023. Bill continues the Pickle Factory and The Inn as her legacies.

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