Monthly Archives: April 2016

Conversation with Anne Geyer, Agriberry Farm (Hanover, VA)

In the summer of 2015, the Virginia Farmer and Rancher Coalition team met with Anne Geyer, of Agriberry Farm, to hear how they got started, how they run their operation, and how they manage labor and tasks on their farm. Agriberry Farm is located in Hanover, VA and you can visit their website at: http://agriberry.com/

Anne did not grow up on a farm and pursued farming with a sense of optimism and excitement. Agriberry was started in 2008 as an opportunity to grow raspberries and blackberries for a worker training program aimed towards people with no experience in farming. Hear about Anne’s beginning in farming and get advice on your own beginning in the video below.

Agriberry farm grows a number of berries, cherries, and peaches, though the focus is on raspberries and blackberries. Because the farm is always in a state of planning and development, Anne is constantly setting and reconsidering the goals that have been set for Agriberry. Hear about how Anne adjusts the goals set for Agriberry and hear a little about what factors influence these adjustments in the video below.

Agriberry uses online and in-person tools to recruit workers, adopting newer technology to get and stay in contact with their younger workers and make them more comfortable at work. Their workers basically work in berry picking but also have workers who go to farmer’s markets and sell their berries. Hear about the labor Agriberry hires and trains, and the challenges Anne has seen over the years in the video below.

 

Interviewed by: Theresa Nartea, Virginia State University

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Apprenticeship Position: Weathertop Farm

Weathertop Farm is looking for 1-2 apprentices for the May-Nov farm season.

Situated on 65 acres in Floyd County, Virginia, and nestled among the rolling hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Weathertop Farm is a small family-owned and operated business dedicated to pasture-based holistic farming. This means that while we aim to be highly productive, it is a productivity that is based on sustainability that works in harmony with the land, improving the soil as well as the health and quality of our pastures.

Weathertop Farm practices management-intensive multi-species rotational grazing with all our animals: chickens, hogs, laying hens, sheep, ducks, turkeys & rabbits.  All products marketed and sold locally.  If you’re interested in learning about how this kind of farming works and what it’s like this would be a great experience.  They offer housing, some meals/food, and $500/month stipend.

For a full description of the apprenticeship position, and access to the application, process, please visit their website: http://www.weathertopfarm.com/apprenticeship


Contact information:

Weathertop Farm LLC

Cedric & Sarah Shannon

540-651-2010

info@weathertopfarm.com

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Farm for Sale: Rapidan River Farm, Barboursville, VA

Farm for Sale

Rapidan River Farm
Barboursville, VA

The link to the real estate page for Rapidan River Farm can be found HERE

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Farm for Sale: Sinclair Farm, Mt. Jackson, VA

FOR SALE

SINCLAIR FARM
1167 Crooked Run Road
Mt. Jackson, VA 22842
540-477-9268
Owners:  Allen & Debora Sinclair

 

SUMMARY:
The farm’s existing revenue from year-round diversified crops and markets provide unique opportunity to step into a farm business that has current cash flow from solid business and provides a platform for significant growth.

Price:      $1,300,000.      2015 Appraisal supports Asking Price

Method of Contact for Additional Information:  Send email to:  growforu16@gmail.com

 

Farm Owners Description:
The farm, equipment, infrastructure, buildings and business are owned and operated by husband and wife team, Allen and Debbie Sinclair.

Husband is 72 year old Veteran with 28 years military experience.  We are looking to retire, visit children and grandchildren more frequently, and travel.

Owners plan to relocate from the area.

Allen and Debbie are willing to mentor buyer(s) during transition and remain available for consultation.

We have owned the farm for 23 years and have focused on earth-friendly economic sustainable farming practices.

 

Method of Transition:
Farm is for Sale as a Turn-Key operation.  Owners are willing to provide initial mentoring and ongoing consultation.

Owner financing is not available.  Farm Service Agency of the USDA , Mid-Atlantic Farm Credit, and Veterans Administration are viable options along with commercial banks and investors.

 

Farm Information:
County of Farm Location: Shenandoah County, VA

Tax Map #: 078 A 098

Acreage: 25.327

Tax Status: Farm is taxed at Agriculture Value

Farm Land Protection: Farm is located in Agriculture District

Current Operation: Farm is primarily used for produce production in fields, greenhouses, and hoop house.  Farm production also includes herbs, flowers, hay fields, and 300 pastured laying hens.  Agri-tourism events have been held on farm.

Additional Potential Uses:   Grapes, Hops, Berries, Meat Animals, Processed Food Production in Commercial Kitchen, Increased Produce Production for added Retail and Wholesale.  Increase number of Agri-Tourism events and Pick-Your-Own.

 

Description of Farm:
The farm is located in the Northern Shenandoah Valley, Shenandoah County, VA and is within 2 hours of VA/DC/MD market opportunities.

The 25.327 acres adjoins 4 additional acres which are available for sale.

The current acreage allocation is:  Pasture – 12; Crops – 5;      Open – 6; Home – 2.

The field crops qualify for organic certification.  The pastures are partially fenced with rolling topography.  Pollinator and wildlife area now in cover crops with native grasses, flowers, and plants to be added in the spring.

The farm owners are consistently looking for and implementing tools and methods where feasible to decrease the farm’s carbon footprint.  As part of the environmental efforts, a 19.5Kw solar system was installed in August 2015 and is operational delivering a significant portion of the farm’s electrical needs.  A 20,000 gallon reservoir system is being installed to collect run-off water from 17,500 square feet of greenhouse tops and will be used for field crop drip irrigation.  The system will be functionally valuable to the farm’s water reserve and environmentally friendly by preventing the run-off water from reaching the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.  Well water is available in all fields with 2 functional wells on the property.

The property has a large 2 story bank barn and houses 300 layers at night as they have free-range access to pasture during the day. The lower level also has horse stalls.  The top level of the barn is excellent for hay, straw, and equipment, along being a location for agri-tourism events such as bands, dancing, demonstrations, etc.  There are additional storage buildings on the property.

The farm equipment will convey with the sale.

The hard work has been done!  Opportunities abound for additional growth with the advantage of a current stable cash flow. Property includes older country home totally renovated with new addition in 1995.  The home is 3771 heated square feet with 4 BR 3 BA , open kitchen and family room area.  Three (3) separate HVAC  systems for energy conservation, wood stove along with propane forced air for heat, stone-encased fireplace in master suite on first floor, 3 BR and full bathroom on second level.  1st floor dining converted to large in-law suite with handicap equipped full BA.  Floors throughout home are primarily wood/tile with some carpeting.  Home has an attached 2 car garage.

Additional 4 adjoining acres with 3 BR 3 BA home with attached 2 car garage provides for multi-family farming, rental, farm intern housing, etc. opportunity.

 

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