Funded! This project was successfully funded on May 9, 2012.

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Our urban farming cooperative needs to buy a dump truck and supplies to scale up our composting program.

About the Project

Photo: Derek Gee, Buffalo News

Farmer Pirates work together to tackle the obstacles associated with growing food in an urban setting. We share knowledge, land, equipment and buy supplies together in bulk. We also operate a composting program to provide the necessary fertility and organic matter to grow healthy food . 

We are farming vacant residential land that requires significant investment to amend and develop the soil. Compost is an essential component of this process.  It is also essential on an ongoing basis to grow healthier food sustainably.  Currently, most of our compost is aged horse bedding hauled in from outside the city at a cost that does not afford us the opportunity to fully cultivate our farms.  Compost made from food waste is more rich and fertile and since it is abundant throughout the city we want to build our capacity to haul and manage more food-based compost.

How We Plan to Do It

Photo: Derek Gee, Buffalo News

Our process relies on food waste and brown matter generated in the city, such as the Western New York Food Bank, the Lexington Coop, the Equestrian Center,  leaves during pickup season, wood chips, etc. Instead of the waste being hauled back out to the country as trash, we haul it to our farms in the same neighborhoods to grow more food.  We compost at each farm where it will be used.  Our process involves layering food waste with brown matter and mature compost into low-maintenance static piles, which will minimize smells and make for quick decomposition.

What We Need YOUR Help With

We currently use our own pickup trucks to collect food waste and other organic materials, but need to be more efficient with our hauling in order to satisfy our compost needs. A dump truck and other supplies such as containers will go a long way towards kickstarting our composting program into high gear. With your support we can turn Buffalo's food waste into fresh, healthy fruits and vegetables, reducing the need to ship waste out of the city and relying less on food grown far away.

Thank you!

Video and song credits

  • Video:  Dorothea Braemer
  • Lead vocal: Janice Stevens
  • Chorus:  Farmer Pirates
  • Banjo:  Mark Stevens
  • Bass:  Jordan Dalton

FAQ

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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    5 backers

    CABIN BOY: A Genuine Urban Artifact (may include rock, concrete, or brick) from one of our farm sites, plus you can come sign your name on the pirate flag for our truck. Genuine Urban Artifacts are only available locally and can be picked up at the flag signing

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    32 backers

    POWDER MONKEY: A Farmer Pirates bandana plus a Genuine Urban Artifact, and you can sign your name on our flag

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  • Pledge $25 or more
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    71 backers

    STRIKER: A Farmer Pirates compost t-shirt and you can come sign your name on our flag. There is no Genuine Urban Artifact at this level.

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    14 backers

    BOATSWAIN: A Farmer Pirates compost t-shirt and a set of seed packets to start your own garden.

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    22 backers

    GUNNER: A Farmer Pirates compost hoodie and a set of seed packets to start your own garden.

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  • Pledge $100 or more
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    26 backers

    RIGGER: A bag of Heirloom Tomato Jerky from a Farmer Pirates Farm and a Farmer Pirates compost hoodie and t-shirt.

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  • Pledge $250 or more
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    6 backers

    PILOT: A guided tour of our four farms and a bag of Heirloom Tomato Jerky. Plus a Farmer Pirates compost hoodie and t-shirt. Tours are only available locally. We cannot bring our farms out of the city.

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  • Pledge $750 or more
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    1 backer

    FIRST MATE: Farmer Pirates will board your ship (yard) and install a 100 sq ft garden with local compost and seed starts. Plus a Farmer Pirates compost hoodie and t-shirt.

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  • Pledge $1,500 or more
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    0 backers

    QUARTERMASTER: A Farmer Pirates Jolly Roger flag to hoist from your mizzen mast and Farmer Pirates will board your ship (yard) and install a 200 sq ft garden with local compost and seed starts. Plus a Farmer Pirates compost hoodie and t-shirt.

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  • Pledge $3,000 or more
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    CAPTAIN: Farmer Pirates will board your ship and host a pig roast.

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Funding period

- (30 days)