UPDATE: THIS OPPORTUNITY IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE
We are Alan and Kathy Rebane, owners of Creekside Farm, a productive, mixed-use, 20-acre farm in Powell River, BC. We are looking to offer an energetic Young Agrarian (or couple) the opportunity to cultivate their horticulture business on our property.
A bit about the farm: Currently, we pasture 5 steers for beef yearly, along with 20-40 feeder pigs, and a couple hundred chickens for eggs and various varieties of meat birds seasonally.
Capitalizing on the unique Class D license that allows eligible Powell River farmers to sell meat at the farm-gate, we have invested in small butcher-shop facilities and are working toward building a commercial kitchen on-site. All of this is done with the goal to build a diverse, well-stocked small farm shop. Until then, we sell our eggs and pork sausage to a popular local restaurant, as well as at the Farmers’ Market.
My wife does most of this work, while I juggle the farm responsibilities alongside full-time, work as a contractor building custom heritage homes. I am the president of the Farmers’ Institute and my wife, the Agriculture Association and the 4-H club. In our 50s, these various responsibilities keep us running flat-out, as you can imagine. Regrettably, the garden/horticulture part of our farm is underutilized.
Where we need you: This is where we see a niche for a Young Agrarian. Above the kitchen and farm-shop, we are building an apartment, and hoping to find a farmer to live on-farm and look after the horticulture portion of the property. The exact details are negotiable, but we envision offering very inexpensive rent in the new apartment in exchange for 50% of the garden profits. We have a new tractor and lots of equipment, and have begun to raise all the beds in the garden. Especially with the commercial kitchen to process the harvest & create value-added goods for sale, there is a lot of potential.
How would you do: In terms of market opportunities, Powell River has a thriving local food economy. Ambitious farmers make a good profit at either of the two farmers’ markets (Powell River or Kelly Creek), through direct sales, or to a number of restaurants that like to procure locally. Also check out our new food store, Ecossentials, a big local-food promoter. As a rule, farmers generally cannot keep up with demand. If creating shelf-stable products, it would be easy to expand into nearby markets of Courtenay/Comox/ Campbell River, Sechelt, or even Vancouver. At the same time, however, Powell River is isolated (accessible only by ferry or air) so some inputs are more expensive. However, Powell River’s geography poses minimal issue, especially if raising crops, not animals, and if operating a small-scale, closed-loop system, based on organic principles.
Spread the word! Please share this posting with any Young Agrarian friends looking for some land with processing facilities to get their start. We would love to make this 20 acres as productive as possible, but need an extra set of hands (or two) and some younger energy to see that happen.
Please email a resume and paragraph describing your interest in this farming opportunity to Alan Rebane: firstname.lastname@example.org.