3 Of The Most Inspiring Farm Startups of 2016

Posted by Amy Storey on December 30, 2016

Starting a farm isn't easy. And yet we've seen hundreds overcome the challenges of starting a farm and do it. Now they're providing fresh, nutritious food to their communities in ways that we  truly admire.

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Topics: Upstart Farmers

Green Wolf Vertical Farm: Bringing Freshness to the Texas Panhandle

Posted by Amy Storey on December 23, 2016

Hundreds of years ago, the Texas panhandle was home to thousands of buffalo. After a few centuries of buffalo stomping on the ground, the soil was compacted and dense, leaving a challenge to future farmers.

Now, the land cattle country and home to thousands of acres of corn, wheat, milo, cotton, and other commodity crops grown by large farmers who have to amend the soil to make a living.

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Topics: Spotlights, Upstart Farmers

American Heartland Acres: Pioneering Locally Grown Basil in North Carolina

Posted by Amy Storey on August 5, 2016

 

Made to innovate

Growing up on a farm taught Matt Marsh the work ethic to pair with his "dreamer" personality. The result of this pairing? Matt was uniquely equipped to solve a problem rampant not only in his home state of North Carolina, but across the country.
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Topics: Upstart Farmers

This Colorado Vertical Farm is Building Community Through Food

Posted by Amy Storey on June 14, 2016

Meet Green Mountain Ranch: An indoor farm changing lives in Colorado

In Green Mountain Falls - a small mountain town near Colorado’s beloved Pike’s Peak - an old boy’s home is being repurposed. Where hallways used to branch off into classrooms and activity rooms, they now house hundreds of ZipGrow Towers. The boys home is now a local farm bringing food to the formerly food-dependent town, and a few weeks ago, our team made a trip to help the farm’s manager, Michael O’Malley, set up the ZipGrow Towers inside.

 

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Topics: Indoor Growing, Upstart Farmers

Fresno EOC: Experiential Learning in the Food Basket of the World

Posted by Amy Storey on May 13, 2016

In Fresno this year, a food- and construction-focused program gives youth ages 18 to 25 living on the street the opportunity to learn practical skills and earn a high school diploma.

  T he Food Initiatives at Fresno EOC is a program that acts as a second chance program for youth that have been incarcerated or gone through a hardship that makes the typical high school path difficult for them.  
 
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Topics: Upstart Farmers

3 Things Every Successful Farmer Does

Posted by Amy Storey on May 10, 2016

 

"The future of food will be defined by small farmers." - Nate Storey, PhD


We're living in a food economy ripe for disruption. Big Ag can't deliver the quality of produce or the transparency of interactions that small farmers can, and that's something motivated modern farmers can get excited about.
 
The successful farmer takes advantage of this by doing three things.
 
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Topics: Upstart Farmers

Navigating Zoning Regulations for Urban Farms

Posted by Amy Storey on April 15, 2016

Mitch Hagney is the operator of Local Sprout, a vertical urban farm in San Antonio, Texas. Local Sprout grows fresh produce in a variety of ways, serving their community year round.

We've known Mitch for a while, but we got the chance to chat with him in person at the 4th Annual Indoor Ag Con in Las Vegas.

We were delighted to hear that Local Sprout is growing as strong as ever, having diversified revenue streams in really interesting ways, and navigated the maze of zoning and regulation laws that come with urban farming.

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Topics: Upstart Farmers

Happy Birthday Upstart University: Looking Back on Student Success

Posted by Amy Storey on March 16, 2016

Today is a proud day for the team here at Bright Agrotech.

Upstart University, the online learning platform for startup and scaling farmers, has been educating students for exactly one year. We're taking the day to celebrate and look back at how much Upstart University has grown and how many new farmers have benefited from the curriculum in just one short year. 

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Topics: Upstart Farmers

Triple Threat Mentoring Builds Chicago's First ZipFarm

Posted by Amy Storey on February 26, 2016

Behind the scenes: Chicago's First ZipFarm

Last November, our team was contacted by Nick Marasco, a Chicagoan looking for somebody to partner with him and Triple Threat Mentoring - a mission-driven organization striving to fight poverty by connecting at-risk youth to passionate volunteers. Marasco's goal was to broaden the impact of Triple Threat's program by building a farm capable of growing fresh food for their local community.

Having experimented with hydroponics and aquaponics for years, and having been a teacher for over a decade, Nick knew that a farm could impact the youth in the Aurora (a suburb of Chicago) in a big way.

So on January 17th, Sean, Trapper, and Tyler left the windy state and went to the windy city to set up Chicago’s first Triple Threat ZipFarm.

This series of videos gives you a behind the scenes look at the Triple Threat Mentoring ZipFarm build.

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Topics: Upstart Farmers

Higher Education in Crisis: How Colleges Fail at Vocation

Posted by Jason Arnold on February 20, 2016

What is Vocation?

One solution that we might hear about is the idea of vocational training. But when we bring up the subject, we usually end up talking about automotive tech schools or welding certifications. We as a society have reduced these fields to “academic consolation prizes” for students who are not “cut out for college”.

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Topics: Upstart Farmers, Industry

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