Know Your (City) Farmers
Farms have become fewer and bigger, while farmers have become fewer and older.
NC has lost more than 1,500 farms in the past 10 years, in part due to an aging farmer population.
Almost 70% of Wake County farmers are 60 years old or older.
Nationally, the average age of farmers is 57 and the fastest growing group are farmers 65 and older.
Only a few generations ago, 70% of the US population was involved in agriculture, today that number is less than 3%.
- Currently only 3% percent of NC farmland is harvested for fruits and vegetables.
It's never been more important to grow new farmers.
new farm entrepreneurs @
You will be seeing new faces and lots more fresh vegetables at Raleigh City Farm this spring! Let us introduce you to a few of the member growers who will be making their produce available to the Raleigh community through co-marketing with Raleigh City Farm.
Kailyard Farm : Seasonal Diversified Vegetables
is a new agricultural partnership between Sean Barker and Corbett Marshall, that will utilize multiple small garden plots, or “kailyards,” in both urban and rural settings, to grow top-quality diversified vegetables for the local community.
This collaboration expands on Sean’s previous Raleigh-based multi-plot growing venture Part & Parcel.
Sean has a background in biology, a certificate in sustainable agriculture from Central Carolina Community College, one of the best programs in the country, and three years of experience growing and selling in the Raleigh market. Corbett has a background in design and experience in ornamental horticulture.
Kailyard’s plan is to utilize the shared infrastructure, high visibility and co-marketing opportunities at Raleigh City Farm to establish a customer following and expand gradually onto additional rural acreage available through Sean’s partnership with Corbett.
This partnership is an ideal fit for Raleigh City Farm, we look forward to accelerating a farm entrepreneur who is already rooted in Raleigh thus strengthening Raleigh’s emerging local food culture. We aim to be a next stepping stone as Kailyard continues to expand its operation incrementally.
Endless Sun Produce : Year-Round Salad Greens
is an urban hydroponic lettuce operation started by Raleigh natives Chase Werner and Matt Spitzer using half the water, fertilizer and space compared to traditional agriculture to grow the tastiest, freshest, and healthiest salad greens all year long.
Endless Sun’s beginnings date back to 2006, when Chase and Matt built their first hydroponic system, growing and selling lettuce to neighbors and friends. They have shared a passion for entrepreneurship, local food systems and sustainable agriculture ever since.
Graduating from NC State in 2011 with degrees in Business and Horticulture, they decided to make urban farming their full-time occupations. Both presently work at Raleigh’s only hydroponic resource store, Fifth Season, where Chase is the store manager.
Through the fall and winter of 2013, Endless Sun has maintained and refined their current hydroponic system at Interfaith Food Shuttle’s educational and incubator farm on Tryon Rd. They are now launching the construction of their first commercial-sized hydroponic greenhouse at Raleigh City Farm.
Like Kailyard Farm, Endless Sun plans to utilize the shared infrastructure, high visibility and co-marketing opportunities at Raleigh City Farm to establish a customer following and expand gradually into additional greenhouses at other locations.
Endless Sun will primarily produce a variety of small-leaf head lettuces sold with their roots attached, allowing these greens to stay crisp and fresh at least 2 weeks in refrigeration. When the root ball is cut, these small loose leaves are already a platable size with no further cutting or washing necessary.
Understory Farm : Year-Round Oyster Mushrooms
is the enterprise of gourmet mushroom grower, and forager Rob Jones, using indoor and outdoor production to grow the finest, freshest oyster mushrooms, available year round, as well as seasonal shiitakes and other wild foraged fungi.
A food activist and educator, Rob is a co-instigator of Crop Mob, coordinator of Vimala’s Curryblossom Cafe‘s sustainability efforts, and farm entrepreneur representative on Raleigh City Farm’s Board of Directors. He has a degrees in Biology and Environmental Education, studied seed saving with bell pepper enthusiast Doug Jones and was a founding representative of the NC Sustainable Local Food Advisory Council.Currently grown in Carrboro, these are the finest and freshest local oyster mushrooms you can find. Understory Farm plans to utilize Raleigh City Farm's customer following to build enough demand to continue expanding its mushroom production gradually into additional facilities, including at Raleigh City Farm.
Understory Farm’s Grey Dove oyster mushrooms form beautiful clusters of petal like caps that vary in color from cloudy sky to steel gray. They have a mild, nutty, mushroomy flavor that can hold its own with stronger flavors or star in more subtly flavored dishes.
Community-Supported Urban Farming
Help us support these new farm entrepreneurs and more to come.
Be a... Local Produce Shopper
Where to find our produce...
Visit:the Farmstand @ Raleigh City Farm800 North Blount StreetHours: Tuesdays 4pm-7pmThursdays 8am-2pmSaturdays 8am-3pm
And Dine at the Growing List Of Downtown Restaurants who buy our produce...