Spice Acres is a 13-acre Countryside Initiative farm managed by Chef Ben Bebenroth, a Cleveland chef and restaurateur who needs your help to buy the animals that will close the loop on his sustainable growing plans.
As Chef Ben so eloquently states, "We need poop to grow!" Our lucky pigs and chickens will enjoy a steady diet of scraps from our award-winning restaurant and catering company. Cows - our edible lawn mowers - will wander about and manage the pastures. Together, their output will enrich the soil as they are rotated across the land.
We need your help to buy these animals and the infrastructure needed to manage them! The $25,000 raised through this campaign will be used for:
- Used Tractor: $8,000
- Cows: $2,000
- Pigs: $2,000
- Chicken Tractors: $2,000
- Fencing: $1,500
- Hay & Feed: $3,000
- Rain Barrels: $500
Any additional funds will be stashed away for livestock investments of the future.
These purchases are the very first step toward a larger vision for the farm. As the soil is enriched, we'll grow heirloom vegetables, hand-cut flowers, and pasture-raised eggs that will find their way to tables across Northeast Ohio.
Along the way, we'll host educational outreach activities for schools and the public to create meaningful experiences that connect people with sustainable farming practices. Local corporations are planning to send out employee teams for fun, fresh volunteer days. A local montessori school is integrating Spice Acres in their 2014/2015 curriculum once each month!
We can't deliver on these promises without your help! Please give what you can. Your money will be directly invested in happy animals, a used tractor, and the equipment needed to grow a successful, sustainable farm.
Our farm is a Countryside Initiative property in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. It's public property, so you can come visit any time and see your money in action.
We are grateful for your support and we hope you enjoy your rewards! Please, spread the word in support of the local foods movement.
Additional thanks to Keith + Linda of Keith Berr Productions for lending us many years of support and talent. They shot this Kickstarter video, as well as the Chef Ben & flatbread photos above. Additional farm images courtesy of Full Bloom Photography.
Risks and challenges
For over a decade, Chef Ben Bebenroth has fostered deep-seated relationships with Ohio’s small family famers to understand growing cycles and sustainable farming practices. He's spent the last five years cultivating an acre of growing space behind his former suburban home, and a small plot behind his restaurant, Spice Kitchen + Bar.
Even with this experience, farming requires a lifetime of learning. Upon taking over the farm in August 2014, Chef Ben hired a tenured farm manager to assist with planning and to foresee upcoming challenges. Plans and preparations are in place to address obstacles associated with shifts in weather, limited irrigation, and many other agricultural variables outside human control.
In addition to the farm manager, Spice Acres is staffed with a crew of motley volunteers. We also have an outreach coordinator to oversee volunteer and educational activities...and, of course, fulfill Kickstarter rewards.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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