We spent much of the winter planning for 2011. We researched possible lease properties, designed the new enterprises that we wanted to add to our farm this year, and planned how we can get our products to the customers who are looking for healthy locally grown beef, pork, chicken, and turkey.
Over the winter we put together a brochure to give to potential leases, this helped break the ice when we made cold visits to several farms. Stopping at a farm to ask about leasing is much harder than I had originally thought. Tons of questions raced through my head, deciding whether nights or weekends were better, what time should I stop, what am I going to say first. I had the brochure finished and printed for several weeks, and drove by several farms numerous times. Then one day I set out to stop at a farm, I slowly drove by the house and no one was home so I continued down the road, a truck passed me coming from the other direction, and pulled into the driveway. So I turned around and made my first attempt at leasing a farm. I stumbled for words a little, but thought I delivered a decent presentation. The landowner wasn’t interested for a few reasons. We chatted for a few minutes, then I headed home. Disappointed, a bit, but relieved that I had finally made my first attempt. A few weekends later I stopped at 2 farms the first was interested, but only wanted to lease me around 15 acres, I was hoping for 80 or more. I also left a brochure at a landowners house who wasn’t home. Later that night I received a phone call from that landowner. We scheduled a meeting for the next evening. After 3 meetings a few phone calls, and about 2 weeks we signed a 5 year lease on 75 acres. Stef and I are very excited. We decided to call the property Bintz Farm after the landowner.
It has now been almost 2 months since. We have install about 3,000 feet of hi-tensile fence, we moved the cattle to the property on April 19th, we also built a “broiler maker” which is a moveable pen for our cornish cross broilers (fashioned after Joel Salatin – Polyface Farms model) this 10′ x 12′ pen holds approximately 75 birds. We move it to fresh pasture daily. Freedom Rangers are another breed of meat chicken that we are raising. They are being raised in a model similar to Nature’s Harmony Farm. We built a portable pen which they sleep in, and during the day they are turned out into a poultry netting pen this houses about 75 birds. Our Buff Orpington Pullets (future layers), are on pasture as well living temporarily in a broiler pen until their coop-deville is finished.
Our first broilers will be ready for your plate May 27th, let us know how many you would like.