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My late brother Rod and I purchased our first half section of land [320 acres] from our uncle in 1979. Since then we have purchased additional lands and added several different enterprises operating them until my brother was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Besides operating an organic grain farm we had an organic greenhouse in which we produced organic tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers year round for the local market, we also had an organic Black Angus cow calf operation and organic hogs, laying hens and meat birds. Currently I am just grain farming the 4000 acres but as you can see there are other opportunities.
We started our transition to organic farming in 2003 and were certified in 2008. By 2012 all of our land was certified as well as our greenhouse and livestock. We are very proud of our organic certification and a copy of our certificate is below.
Certificate of Conformity - Canada Organic Regime
We also completed our Environmental Farm Plan and received the following certificate.
Environmental Farm Plan Certificate
Continue to farm organically and holistically while improving the soil and the environment with extensive consideration of water and wildlife.
I am working on ideas for our organic farm to carry on in perpetuity. Just a little background and that is my neither my brother or I have children so we are not in a position to transition our farm to a family member. As I am getting older and my brother passed away on June 3, 2020 I have to consider future prospects for our organic farm.
What I am proposing is to organize a for-profit farm co-operative(the co-op would have 2000 to 5000 members) to take over ownership of our farm totally. This should be a solid investment as the co-op would own the land, buildings and equipment. The co-op would pay interest on the memberships and there would be good prospects of receiving a dividend as well. And also the shares will be redeemable on request.I would like to stay on as general manager of the farm co-operative while training someone to take over the position in two or three years. After vacating the position of farm manager I would still like to be a board member if the membership so desires. I am currently working with professional groups preparing a feasibility study to determine the practicality of my ideas. There will be a lot more information forthcoming as the study progresses. Please let me know your thoughts on this concept.