market garden for restaurant

oerboraySeptember 4, 2012

I am working with a restaurant/brewery to start a 6 acre market garden to supply the restaurant with produce. We will also try to sell produce and value-added products off-farm, probably to other restaurants and institutions.

Does anyone have (and are you willing to share) budgeting info - payroll, income & expenses - for this kind of farm business structure? All start-up and labor costs will be paid for by the restaurant, but we want the farm to eventually be self-sustaining, though closely linked to the restaurant. Anyone have any experience with this kind of relationship?

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dirtdigging101(7 - NC)

Sounds pretty pie in the sky. What is your budget to start with? What produce does the restaurant need and can use? What do u have to start with such as tractor, tiller tools, etc? What about the land is it good garden soil? Do u have water for irrigation, this is a must? As is fencing for all types of critters. Without water and fencing you may as well not do it at all. They are like crop insurance.

6 acres is a lot, how much space do u need for each crop and for susession plantings. Labor can be a function of euipment with a trator making a big difference. Harvesting is a daily thing and post harvest handling is a requirement too. you may need cool storage besidesw hat the restaurnt has.

Valu add products have their place and since the restaurant has a licienced kitchen that would really help.

Just a lot to think about.

If I were in your shoes i would take a different approach al together.

Talk to the restaurant and see if they could not be know fore something/ Think strawberries, plant one year harvest the next, pies jams and shortcakes and many varieties frees very well for future pies and shortcakes. If you control harvest and processing u would have a product superior to what no other restaurant would have and have it all year long. big fancy well watered berries fill baskets quickly and are to die for on the plate a 1/4 acer patch would do handsomely.

Start small and have water and fence.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 8:14PM
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