Counties of interestGallatin
Planned OperationHay & Forage, Grain, Large Animal (cattle, sheep, goats), Small Animal (pigs, rabbits, poultry), Dairy, Other
Check all experience and education that apply to you and your farming partnersGeneral college degree, Other experience/license/agriculture or business training
Land TenureBuy/Sell, Lease, Partnership
Briefly describe your current occupation(s) and responsibilities and list previous agricultural employment and experiences. If you are currently farming or ranching, please state the size, type(s), and location of the operation.I own and operate YES Compost LLC a food-waste vermicomposting company. We collect food wastes from Bozeman, Belgrade, and Big Sky, thermophilically (hot) compost them for 2-3 months and then feed them to red wiggler composting worms. Our end product is YES Worm Castings a nutrient rich soil amendment and organic fertilizer (still working on OMRI cert.) We collect around 15,000 lbs of food waste each week which turns into roughly 15 yards of compost per month. We mix in wood-based carbon materials (dust, chips, finished compost) to maximize the speed of composting. We manage the oxygen by turning/aerating with a skid steer 1-2 times each week, and we manage the moisture to keep it in an ideal range for the microbial populations that are responsible for the decomposition.
Farming PracticesConventional, Organic
Please elaborate on the type(s) of agricultural operation you plan on running.Our current facility is located on leased property (old gravel pit with a compacted soil work surface) that will eventually be developed by the landowner. We are looking for a place where we can invest in / utilize some infrastructure to maximize the quality of our end products. Ideally we create/use a 1.5-2 acre active work area with the ability to build a 2000-5000 sqft enclosure next to this surface. The improved composting system will capture the latent heat from the thermophilic cycle of the initial composting and use it to produce hot water. This water will then be used to heat the warehouse/barn/shelter located on site that houses our worm operation. This technology will allow us to significantly reduce our carbon footprint and be a demonstration facility for what is possible with this alternative energy source; compost! We are working with Agrilab Technologies to utilize their heat capture technology. The worm operation will be scaled to produce far more worm castings and other soil products at an affordable price for organic and conventional farmers that are looking to re-invigorate dead and unproductive soils.
If you are interested in another type of business arrangement, please explainWe are interested in Manure/barnwaste composting as well and could partner with a dairy/poultry/horse farm and manage this material through our composting process as a trade for the lease arrangement.
Please elaborate on the kind of additional training/information that would help you:We would like to reach as many levels of the agriculture industry, from home gardeners to large scale producers in the area.
Please attach any photos that support your application.
Other experience/license/agriculture or business training:University of Maine Extension program - "Entrepreneurship in Composting"