Daniel Allen raises fifteen acres of vegetables at Allenbrooke Farms, just outside of Nashville, Tennessee. He and his wife, Stephanie, market all of their produce to 367 families through their free-choice, market-style CSA.
While many farmers are intensely focused on maximized dollars per acre, Daniel has taken a perpendicular approach, grossing just $200,000 on Allenbrooke’s fifteen acres of vegetable production – but he does that with no season extension, and just one hired hand.
Daniel digs into the details of production and distribution at Allenbrooke Farms, and how the free-choice distribution system enables them to maximize efficiency and minimize complexity in the production side of the operation. We get into the details of their rapid harvest system, simple-but-effective production systems, weed management, and how Daniel keeps his mind and body in condition during the production- and off-seasons.
He also shares the colorful history of his farming operation, where he and Stephanie jumped in with both feet and sold their car to pay for seeds in 2011, their first year in production. And we hear just a little about Daniel’s career as a high-fashion model in New York City before coming back to the family farm.
The Farmer to Farmer Podcast is generously supported by Vermont Compost Company.