There are three ways to participate to assure the future of farming.
People in categories #1 and #2 we call "Workers", people in category #3 are called "Supporters". You may belong to as many categories as you like, but due to the myriad of reports and obligations in operating a nonprofit we've had to make certain descriptive categories. We are looking to find a sponsor to help us with a fund raiser to create T-shirts for sale with our logo. Call 607-334-4928 or e-mail us to find out how to help us with it.
1. VOLUNTEER (no payment, services, or farm products can be given to you in exchange for your time, or support) See #2 below for the list of areas where we need volunteers to help train the new farmers. We cannot give you farm products as we need all income from farm products to help pay for the cost of operation.
a. Staff: directors, officers, managers, full time volunteers
b. General Volunteer: you pick the times, tasks, and frequencies
Each trainee decides on the areas he/she is interested in learning and an individual agreement is created. Some may want to own their own livestock, some may just want to grow food for family, some may want to grow product to market to the consumer, etc. The following is not an exhaustive list of the possible areas to work:
a. Flora (Gardening, Silvaculture): ordering, ground preparation, planting, weeding, irrigation, pruning, forest management, harvesting of produce, processing and storage of produce, pest management, food safety, record management.
b. Field Management: haying, plowing & planting field crops, mowing, harvest of field crops, storage, record management, equipment operation, mntce, safety.
c. Fauna: poultry manangement, sheep & goat (ovine) management, pest & parasite management, scheduling processing, feed management, foot trimming, rotational pastures (moveable fencing, shelters), record management, bee keeping, humane care of livestock.
d. Mechanics and Equipment: basic engine maintenance and repair for gas and bio-diesel, basic matenance, repair, and operation of (baler, mowers, cultivators, rototillers, weed wackers, scythes, backhoe, tools, chain saws), sharpening blades, record management.
e. Retail Store & Farmers Markets: ordering, inventory control, food safety, cleaning, customer relations, marketing, cash control, deliveries, record management.
f. Building & Grounds: basic carpentry, basic plumbing, basic electrical, cleaning, basic masonry, basic surveying, firewood preparation, safety, construction.
g. Office & Business: data entry, computer skills, typing, scheduling, accounting, supply management, cleaning.
h. Miscellaneous: sewing and mending, laundry, cleaning, library, GAPS training, organic certification, transportation, livestock guard dog training, mapping, research, worshops/presentations.
So, you want to be a "real" farmer? Keep in mind that you will have to be able to do ALL of the above.
3. MEMBERSHIPS: This farm and nonprofit operates solely on donations (we are too young to qualify for major grants). If you would like to contribute by being a yearly member, please e-mail us for an application and details. Your yearly membership is tax deductible and you will receive the newsletters and are welcome to visit the farm.
4. LESSEES: There is a 4th way to participate. By contract you can lease lands for growing for yourself or family. Currently we do not have a price structure for this, but we can barter - your time and energy to care for some of LQfarm's production in exchange for using our land.
The reality of the cost of farming: keep in mind that in New York State where taxes are one of the highest in the nation, farming is NOT a lucrative business - especially if you are not willing to compromise the environment for the sake of being able to earn enough money to send your children to college. This farm has the strictist control over all farming practices to
- keep our soil healthy, vibrant, and sustainable ,
- keep our animals at their optimum health levels by not participating in over-production or over crowding (and other farming practices you can review in the NOFA-Pledge document), and
- keep our natural water and forest resources in conditions of sustainability so our community can enjoy the wonderful wildlife we host.
The donor family had to work off the farm in well paying professions to be able to keep this 96 acre farm intact and uncontaminated. It also took a MINIMUM of three people to keep the production up to a bare minimum. With that in mind please consider supporting this operation with donations to pay for food for the livestock, infrastructure upkeep, insurance, etc., but more important than money, please donate TIME and PHYSICAL energy to help operate this farm. We wish this farm to thrive for a long time so that new farmers can own livestock from our flocks to take with them to their new farms (or perhaps just keep them here while continuing to volunteer for this nonprofit).