Erik Lehtinen

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Farming Status and Plans

Description of farming status, plans, and practices:

I am a military veteran with a strong desire to organically farm produce, forest cultivated products (mushrooms, ginseng, small scale firewood) and/or small animals (Goats/Sheep/Poultry).  I am a part time graduate student pursuing my Master of Science Degree in Natural Resources with a specialization in Agroforestry.  I have worked as a Cornell Cooperative Volunteer Educator, worked on horse and dairy farms and was a member of Future Farmers of America (FFA) where I won several awards in dairy judging and ran a successful poultry project (egg production)  I am married with three daughters, and the whole family is looking for an opportunity to connect with farming.  Finding affordable land of course is a major barrier to entering this line of work, so I am looking for a current farmer that has land/buildings and a strong desire to see the land kept in agricultural use.   Transitioning land to my ownership is the ultimate objective.  Outright purchase, lease with an option to purchase or partner with eventual ownership transition are the options that are of interest to our family.

Description of marketing method:

Traditional, social media, Chamber of commerce networking are just a few that come to mind

Does this farmer have a business plan?

In progress

Farm Characteristics

Preferred location:

  • Capital Area
    • Albany
    • Rensselaer
  • Hudson Valley
    • Columbia
    • Greene

Desired acreage:

1-5, 6-10, 11-20, 21-50, 51-100, >100

Infrastructure required:

Onsite housing, Barns or other facilities for storage of equipment, livestock, and crops, Water access, Electrical Access

Description of buildings required:

I am very interested in fruit and vegetable production so any greenhouses would be perfect but are not required.  Outbuildings for small livestock or poultry would be a plus.

Description of water access required:

Water on the property is important.  A stream or pond would be a bonus.

Crops and Livestock

Primary crops:

Vegetables, Fruits, Hay, Other Crops

Primary Livestock:

Goats/Sheep, Poultry

Description of livestock/crops:

We are looking to manage small livestock only.

Farmland Tenure

Tenure options desired:

For Lease, Partnership, For Sale, Other Tenure Agreement

Description of tenure options desired:

Transitioning land to my ownership is the ultimate objective.  Outright purchase, lease with an option to purchase or partner with eventual ownership transition are the options that are of interest to our family.

Additional Information

Will this farmer's operation qualify an eligible landowner for an Agricultural Assessment?

Yes

Experience & education:

Formal agricultural education, Farm owner, Farm internship/apprenticeship

Experience description:

My family owns farm land and I raised poultry successfully when I was younger.  I own forest land and am very comfortable "conservation managing" woodlands.   I have worked on dairy and horse farms, and am currently pursuing a Masters degree in Agroforestry.