Before we share the article below first published on http://civileats.com/, you should know that Fort Myers has it’s own urban farm managed by Joe the Farmer, right on Martin Luther King Bl. It is currently a 2 acre spread where Joe plants vegetables, fruits and micro greens. Joe Reardon has been farming and teaching school children how to farm for some time.
Starting in 2017 in partnership with the Enterprise Center Commercial Kitchen,
Joe and others will be teaching anyone in the community that wants to learn how they can farm at their home or how they can partner with Joe the Farmer to produce revenue on an ongoing basis.
Food is needed by everyone and the partnership between Joe the Farmer and the SWFL Enterprise Center enables new entrepreneurs to earn a living from the food they grow, bake, BBQ or bottle.
When reading the article below know that another two acres of farm specifically for the Fort Myers community to learn how to grow food for their families and for profit is coming on line later this year. Sign-up for the newsletter to learn more about these opportunities.
Food – The New “legal” Hustle!
In his book, ‘Urban Farmer,’ Curtis Stone writes about how to build a successful farm on a quarter acre of land.
Two surprising things happened to Curtis Stone the year he decided to start Green City Acres, in Kelowna, British Columbia. First, he became a town celebrity and, second, he made a good living doing it.
In The Urban Farmer, Growing Food for Profit on Leased and Borrowed Land, Stone lays out his methodology for building a successful farm on a quarter acre of land. He strictly follows high-density, bio-intensive methods to create a compact landscape of specialty crops grown for market.
Urban farming is by no means a new concept and the intensive growing methods that Stone presents in Urban Farmer have already been well-documented by farmers such as Eliot Coleman and Jean-Martin Fortier. But the value that Urban Farmer brings to conversation lies in Stone’s upfront discussion of both community relations and financial viability.
Stone found that neighbors would drop by every day to ask him questions about gardening, farming, the weather, and life. He sees this type of interaction as an important part of the job; by physically feeding the residents of a city, farmers take on an important role within their communities.
Farming as a Career
In Urban Farmer, Stone lays his financial model out on the table to educate (and incentivize) urban dwellers interested in becoming growers. In fact, he devotes two chapters to the financial side of his business. He drills down to the specifics, including topics like labor. He writes:
If I can harvest one bed (75 bunches) of radishes in an hour, that task is worth $187.50 gross profit (radishes sell at $2.50 per bunch). I would train a person to do this task as fast as I can, but I will only expect them to do 75% of that (at least at first)… Paying an employee $15 an hour, it took two hours of labor ($30) to produce 56 bunches, which sold for $140; that means your gross profit is $110 on that particular task. That’s a 78 percent gross profit margin.
Labor considerations are often left out of small-scale farm business plans and famers often complain that they don’t pay themselves (or account for their own time in any real way). But Stone handles his business like a traditional employer and his discussion of labor costs reveal that. His descriptions of finances presents a refreshing take: A farmer’s business shouldn’t just make money, the farmer should as well.
To read the full article visit:http://civileats.com/2016/02/29/how-urban-farmers-curtis-stone-earns-75000-on-15000-square-feet/