Local Food Cleveland Connecting Peeps

Tonight, Local Food Cleveland hosted an event, So You Want To Be A Farmer? The panel featured local agricultural experts and local farmers who shared stories with over 200 attendees. Those in the crowd self-identified as interested in becoming farmers, already farming, or just plain wanting to hug farmers for making fresh produce available locally. I have to admit, I put on the farmer sticker, despite still being at the beginning stages of this dream…..I think we’re close enough and was further encouraged by tonight’s event. Here’s a bit of an overview of what happened.

The Panelists

Some of the takeaways from the event include:

What is a farmer? When your motivation is profit and you go beyond just growing for home consumption, you are a farmer.

What are some lessons learned? Understand farming is a business. You need to spend a lot of time marketing your business in order to be successful.

How can one get started?

  • Get out and dig in the dirt
  • Take a course > Exploring the Small Farm Dream
  • Set goals – where do you see yourself in 5 years?
  • Understand your motivations
  • Participate in the “farmer reality show” by talking/volunteering with other farmers
  • Understand what you want to market and to whom
  • Make a list of what you know and what you need to learn

The event was really encouraging and the advice from the panelists and others that I met is priceless. So glad to be heading down this path…..

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