Liz Sutter

Farmer couple needing a stepping stone to start our farming career feeding ourselves and our local community with nourishing food!

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Location: West, Buncombe, Haywood, Henderson, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Transylvania, Yancey

Total acres 3.0

Acres of cropland or tillable land 0.5

Acres of pasture 1.0

Acres of unfenced pasture 3.0

Looking for the following:

Type of opportunity:

Lease (1 to 5 Years), Lease (5+ Years), Lease with Option to Buy, Incubator / Mentored Lease, Business Partnership. More info: My Partner and I are open to many different options, but ultimately we are looking for secure, non-primitive housing to lease or work trade with land that will allow for one of our 4 possible enterprises to be explored over the next year+. We’re open to (1) being under the wing of a farm in production and adding/managing an enterprise (2) joining another farm seeker, and pooling our experience and resources, (3) leasing for at least 1 full year, possibly longer, and working the land under our business name.

Equipment & infrastructure:

Farmer housing. More info: Farmer housing is not negotiable, we must have on site, clean, comfortable housing that can house two awesome cats and a couple, with space to garden our own food. Bonus points if there are multiple bedrooms, and a Gold star if there’s separate structures like a cabin, MIL suite, finished barn loft to rent out. Primitive living, tiny living (under 250 sqft), off grid living aren’t great options for us. Otherwise, equipment and barns/fencing/infrastructure are great, but not required by any means.

Current production on farm:

More info: No current production necessary, but we are open to just about any current production, except for dog breeding and anything involving conventional/chemical sprays and fertilizers.

Current farming practices:

Biodynamic, Ecological production but not certified, None, the property is not being farmed. More info: Preferred current farming practices include biodynamic (loosely defined here as using as few off farm inputs as possible), ecological production (farm-as-ecosystem model is great), or not being farmed at all. Certified organic is not ideal. Conventional is not ok.

Qualifications and goals:

Previous farming experience:

Volunteer, Employee

Number of years experience:

4

Other qualifications:

Farm business training, Higher education in agriculture or related field. More info: My partner has a bachelors degree in biology, and has a particularly good understanding of insects, soil, and pasture management. I have earned over 70 credit hours towards an environmental ecology degree, and have a particularly good understanding of ecosystem dynamics and erosion. We are both currently in the middle of the Farm Beginnings training program offered by Organic Growers School. We have experience working for goat dairies, certified and non certified organic vegetable farms, biodynamic community garden, pasture-based meat farms, and agritourism.

Production goals:

Poultry (Broiler/Layer), Vegetable production. More info: Poultry (turkeys, layer chickens), meat rabbits, greens, and micro greens are the enterprises we are interested and confident in moving forward with in a production model. If we’re talking a farm in current production, we’re open to cattle, hogs, poultry, herbs, sheep/goat meat, perennials (fruits, orchards, forests, etc).

Personal experience and production goals summary:

The ideal situation for us would be to rent or work trade (up to 30 hrs week) for a house as described above, have a garden (crop share is definitely an option), and have 1 to 10+ acres to run layer chickens and/or rabbits on, and some space for growing our greens. We are a young couple, with lots of experience and passion to start our farming careers. Our biggest hurdle is capital, since we don’t have other careers and our off farm jobs tend to be working for other farmers. We aren’t asking for capital, we can and always have paid rent on time, plus we are scrappy and have a lot of local resources at our fingertips, but it’s a major consideration since our start up may be a little slow. If you have capital to invest in future farmers, we are happy to work with you to make your farm/homestead/land dreams come true! If you are another experienced beginning farmer with similar goals and interests, don’t hesitate to reach out, we’re totally open to collaborating. If you want to know more, or have other questions, please reach out! (606) nine two two 1149 via text or call is great.