“Problem solvers make the best farmers. If you’re not a problem solver, it makes your farming life so much harder.”
I’ve known Jinny Cleland of Four Springs Farm in Royalton, Vermont for more than 20 years, which is about half of the time she’s been farming. We’ve had great long talks about farming, business, faith (she is a Christian Scientist), and much more while processing turkeys together. When you are elbow-deep in bird carcass and wet feathers, you really get to know a person.
I have great appreciation for the way she embraced farming from a very different background, the lessons she has learned, and how her enterprises have evolved to better fit her desires, skills and profit targets over the years. It feels like we all talk a lot about getting farmers and ranchers onto the land, but we don’t go back often enough and ask them how that went.
As Jinny says, “We only know what we know; it doesn’t matter how smart we are. If we haven’t had exposure to it, we don’t know.”
Some resources mentioned in this episode:
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