In this episode of Hobby Farms Presents: Growing Good, Pete Charlerie dives into financial sustainability for small farms, free equipment and information resources, USDA incentives and more.
Pete tells us about his journey from his familyâ€™s citrus grove in Trinidad to the University of Maryland, where he earned a degree in ag economics, setting the stage for his farm consultancy work today. Hear about the value of niche farm products, from cut flowers to sweet potato greens to value-added products. When you need a market for your products, sometimes you need to start your own, and Pete talks about his role in starting the Hollywood Farmers Market in Maryland.
Learn about Peteâ€™s work as a farm consultant, as he tells us how to get better prices on materials, find USDA and NRCS resources and financial incentives, and use shared equipment. FARMS (the Family Agriculture Resource Management Service) is another resource for legal, marketing and production help for small-scale farmers in the US and the Caribbean. Stay tuned for the story about how FARMS helped one farmer save three hours of labor a day!
Pete also talks about his SunSplash Farm and how farming taught him about much more than growing food. At the very end, youâ€™ll get tips for growing taro, a versatile and productive root crop thatâ€™s well known in the tropics.