Off-Farm Income

On today's episode I get to interview a neighbor.  Well, at least a neighbor  compared to so many of my other guests.  Felecia Hillyard raises goats and flowers at her farm on Chicken Dinner Road in Caldwell, about 20 miles from my farm.  She has a very interesting business model with enterprises that compliment each other.

To hear Felecia tell her story, the first time she laid eyes on goats, behaving like goats behave, she was enamored.  This got her started talking about how much she wanted to raise goats when she was at work, and it turned out that one of her colleagues name Jamie, raised goats of her own.  Ultimately, Felecia purchased 12 goats from Jamie, and Jamie ended up being a close friend and mentor to her.

Soon, Felecia leased the farm that she currently owns and started growing her herd.  It wasn't long after that, that she recognized that between manure, bedding and hay waste the goats were leaving behind what would be great compost.  She started making compost with the bi-product and needed something to do with it.  This led her to start growing flowers.

Felecia found a farm that was going out of business and selling a hoop house, and she bought it.  After disassembling it at their location she transported it back to her farm and put it back together.  Today, Felecia grows flowers in her goat compost, cuts them, arranges them and sells them at an unsupervised roadside stand in front of her place.  She hasn't experienced any problems with theft, and since the beginning the bulk of her sales have changed from cash purchases to electronic purchases.

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Direct download: Felecia_Hillyard_Episode_1491_-_9722_5.49_PM.mp3
Category:farming -- posted at: 12:30am MDT