Samuel Kowalsky

Farming Status and Plans

Farming status:

Not currently farming

Description of farming status, plans, and practices:

Looking for a parcel of land to lease in order to begin organic grain production. I have been working on farms in France for the past two years, specifically with peasant bakers, learning the ins-and-outs of grain growing, milling, baking, and market gardening. I am primarily interested in landrace varieties of wheat, as well as other grains like spelt, rye, and einkorn. Sustainable farming practices will be essential to the production of the grain, but I am open to different methods that can achieve this (cover crops, grazing, rotation, no-till, etc.) I would harvest and mill the grain and then use the flour to bake bread to be sold at farmers' markets and to restaurants. Depending on interest, I would also be interested in further developing the milling operation to supply bakeries with flour.

Description of marketing method:

I'm hoping to tap into the revived interest in local and organic food produced using sustainable practices as well as in whole-grain sourdough bread made from fresh flour. Additionally, with more and more people finding themselves intolerant of modern wheat leavened with commercial yeast, offering slow-fermented sourdough bread made from ancient varieties of wheat (whose gluten is more digestible) provides people with the most nourishing of foods without the drawbacks of modern wheat. Artisan baking is becoming more popular, and I am hoping to be able to market to the NYC area, where there is still a lot of slack in the bread market. With any luck, New York could become just as much of a bread destination as is San Francisco.

Does this farmer have a business plan?

In progress

Farm Characteristics

Preferred location:

Albany, Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Orange, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, Saratoga, Sullivan, Ulster, Washington, Westchester

Desired acreage:

1-5, 6-10, 11-20, 21-50, 51-100, >100

Crops and Livestock

Primary crops:

Grains

Description of livestock/crops:

Landrace wheats, modern wheats well-adapted to the Hudson Valley climate, einkorn, emmer, spelt, rye. Cover crops would also play a key role in the maintaining of soil fertility and structure, though the variety would be chosen based on the area of cultivation.

Farmland Tenure

Tenure options desired:

For Lease, Partnership

Description of tenure options desired:

I would like to establish a long term lease on a parcel of land, or partner with someone who could see a grain operation fitting into their farming plan.

Additional Information

Will this farmer's operation qualify an eligible landowner for an Agricultural Assessment?

Maybe

Experience & education:

Farm internship/apprenticeship

Experience description:

I have been volunteering on organic farms in France for the past year and a half, mostly baking with peasant bakers (individuals who do everything A to Z in bread-making, from grain to bread) and working with market gardeners. I also have experience raising layer chickens and milk goats.