Farming Status and Plans
Years actively farming:6-10
Description of farming status, plans, and practices:
Currently I run my own farm business, growing certified organic vegetables, herbs, and flowers for a robust CSA program in addition to sales to a few restaurants and the local food co-op. I would like to continue a CSA program at my new location with the goal of increasing my acreage and moving more toward wholesale via small distributors. My goal is to find a property to invest in and steward for the long-term while establishing perennial crops and building high tunnels needed for year-round production. I grew up in New York State and am now considering returning to the Hudson Valley.
Description of marketing method:
I have had to very creatively market my vegetables to possible consumers. I moved my farm from one location (owner sold land I was leasing) to another location, where I currently am. I have had to create a new customer base when this move was made. I also expanded my CSA distribution area to include a remote drop-off at a brewery 30 minutes away to tap into an additional customer base.
Does this farmer have a business plan?In progress
Desired acreage:11-20, 21-50
Infrastructure required:Onsite housing, Barns or other facilities for storage of equipment, livestock, and crops, Water access, Electrical Access
Description of infrastructure:
I am looking to purchase a property to steward and care for using sustainable growing practices, as such I am hoping to find a complete farmstead: house, outbuildings, and high quality farmland suitable for vegetable production. Vegetable production requires a water source (well or above ground) and access to electricity to power a greenhouse.
Description of buildings required:
Small but liveable house, barn for storage of equipment, parking for farm vehicles, and indoor storage for supplies plus space for at least one walk-in cooler. Space will also be needed to create a wash station, either outdoor but under cover or preferably indoor in a temperature controlled space.
Description of water access required:
Potable water for washing produce and drinking. Water suitable for irrigation purposes, with FSMA, this will most likely need to come from a well.
Crops and Livestock
Description of livestock/crops:
The primary focus is on production of organic vegetables, which is where my experience lies. Prior to starting my own business, every farm I worked on also had livestock and I would lie to return to this scenario if possible, with the addition of a large laying flock for certified organic eggs, using a rotational grazing system. If acreage allows, I would also like to start trialing small cereal grains and expand if there is a suitable market.
Tenure options desired:For Sale
Description of tenure options desired:
Having leased land for many years, I am now very ready for ownership.
Will this farmer's operation qualify an eligible landowner for an Agricultural Assessment?Yes
Experience & education:Farm owner, On farm work experience, Farm internship/apprenticeship
Formerly a high school earth science teacher who started growing food with my high school students, then apprenticed on a diversified farm. I moved into an assistant manager position for a 25-acre mixed veg operation, then managed a 2 acre farm, after which I started my own farm business. Over this time I have attended many workshops and conferences to educate myself and started an organization for beginning farmers in CT. Over the years I continued to gain more experience as I moved from one farm to another, learning from others and developing mentors and a farming community to lean on.