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A small-diversified farm business serving the Merrimack valley area with local food to your home, restaurants, and farmers markets.
151 backers pledged $13,343 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$13,343

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THE BEGINNING

When I was around 18 years old I started to play around with gardening in my small urban apartment where my family lived. We only had access to a small yard that was shared with a few other families but I felt an urge to take a small bit of that yard and transform it into a productive food space. Back then I didn’t know much about gardening or food production, I did some quick googling, bought some pots, soil, seeds, and gave it a shot. Sure, some things grew and it was a fun experience, but I wanted more. I didn’t grow up on a farm. My family didn’t always grow our own food, or even pay very much attention to the things we were putting into our bodies. It wasn’t until I was 18 and both my parent had serious health scares that easily could have landed them in a cemetery that I decided to act. Seeing both my parents get sick had a profound transformation in the way I thought about the food we eat and the things we consume.

I made it a goal to change the things we had in our fridge. I started shopping at farmers markets, I started cooking more, I wanted to learn as much as could about the way we produce, distribute, and consume food. This led me to going back to the source of where our food comes from and this is where the journey began into my life of farming.

THE START OF HORNE FAMILY FARMS

After a few years of farming on the urban scale, educating children in schools about the importance of gardening and cooking, and reading as much as I could about farming, I decided to go back to school to really build my foundation and immerse myself in the lifestyle and practice. I spent a year as a student farmer at The Farm School in Athol, MA and the experience I had here was exactly what I was looking for. Starting my own farm- a small business that would affect positive change in the lives and well being of the people I love and those in the surrounding communities- that was always the goal. The Farm School has played an integral part in preparing me to take on this exciting endeavor. My time away and immersing myself in this work gave me a very clear and direct focus into what I wanted to create. I spent countless hours thinking, studying, and planning for how to make this happen.

Of course in order for this to work, I needed land, which is always the hardest thing for young farmers like myself to acquire. During my time researching and looking for a viable spot to start, a good friend of mine reached out. Mike Ducharme, who I met while implementing gardens into Lowell Public Schools, explained that he had a plot of land he wanted to farm. He was eager and enthused about the idea, but with 2-year-old twin boys and a new career as a school principal, he simply did not have the time The farm spot is located in Londonderry NH and it is an old horse farm that is 2 acres with a beautiful half-acre fenced in plot. The size and scale is perfect for me because, for the most part, I will be doing the physical labor of farming by myself.

 

Micro Greens to Restaurants
Micro Greens to Restaurants

 

The Farm in Londonderry
The Farm in Londonderry

 

My Time at The Farm School
My Time at The Farm School

USING KICKSTARTER AND CROWDSOURCING THE FARM 

In order for Horne Family Farms to really come to fruition, I need to raise enough start up capital to continue to grow and expand the farming operations. So far I have been growing and selling specialty micro greens to restaurants in the greater Merrimack valley region. I have designed and built a very productive food-producing garden for a family, and I have started to prepare the farm plot for growing vegetables for next season. With your help and a successful kickstarter campaign I will be able to fund the following projects:

Purchase & Build Greenhouses  $3000

Proper Hand tools & equipment $500

Seeding Trays                             $200

Compost/ mulch/ fertilizer          $1500

Chicken Coop                             $500

Irrigation/ Wash and Pack Area  $1500

Marketing and Website               $1000

Seeds                                          $500

Misc:                                           $300

This model of farming is much different from how most farms have started up and operated in our history. Most of the time, farms are huge areas that require lots of people and resources to make it possible; they require outrageous loans for equipment purchases before they ever put a seed in the ground. Horne Family Farms is different because I want to show that you don’t need hundreds of acres of land or a $60,000 tractor to farm and produce high quality vegetables. With help and support from the community, small start up and overhead costs, great technique, and hard work, we together can create an amazing food producing space that is feeding people great food. I am not claiming I can feed everyone, but I can start to feed a small community of supporters, and I can inspire and teach the community around me to become more self-reliant and become great vegetable growers themselves. I hope you come on this journey with me, together we can create something beautiful and become healthier individuals and in tern, a healthier more sustainable world.

Home Built Veggie Bed by Horne Family Farms
Home Built Veggie Bed by Horne Family Farms

 

Risks and challenges

There are of course many risks and challenges with trying to grow and sell vegetables like anything else. One obvious risk is that this plot of land hasn’t been farmed on much in the past; there is a lot of work to be done to prepare the area and get it ready for proper vegetable growing. With that said, I am using all organic practices to help mitigate and prepare the land for great vegetable growing.

Another risk and challenge is that I will be doing the majority of the work solo. This includes field prep, seeding, growing, harvesting, marketing, selling, and accounting. I have help and support in some areas but the majority of the work will be done by me so proper efficient systems need to be in place before the first seed goes into the ground. I will be investing in new technologies that will increase productivity and efficiencies with farming.

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    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

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    A BIG thank you and a shoutout on our social media pages. THANK YOU!

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    Swag Package of Horne Family Farms Hat & Stickers

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Pledge $75 or more

    Receive a Horne Family Farms Swag Bag. You'll receive a farmers market tote bag with apparel and prizes

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

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    Receive a Horne Family Farms Swag Bag with special "limited edition" items!

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Pledge $200 or more

    Not only receive a Horne Family Farms Swag Bag filled with awesome items, you will also receive a one time home delivered "restaurant share" of micro greens and see for yourself the hype of these powerful greens

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Pledge $500 or more

    You will receive a Horne Family Farm Swag Bag with all the awesome items AND you will be invited to come enjoy a Horne Family Farms Sunday Dinner for you and 3 of your friends hosted at The Old Court in beautiful downtown Lowell.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Pledge $1000 or more

    They just keep building! You will receive a Horne Family Farms Swag Bag, an invite to a Horne Family Farms Sunday Dinner for you and 3 of your friend hosted at The Old Court in beautiful downtown Lowell AND receive a 2 week home delivered CSA share to enjoy the bountiful harvest during the summer months!

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    THE BIG ONE!!

    This is the big one! I will build you a beautiful raised bed garden at your home! It will be designed and implemented in the most thoughtful way given your space and wants. I will work with you and together create an amazing productive food space right outside your door.

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Funding period

- (30 days)