FarmStart is an incubator farm set up by the Kindling Trust, providing access to land, training and support for new growers to trial their farming business ideas in a low-risk setting.
New growers join FarmStart as TestCroppers, and benefit from access to certified organic land, training and mentoring, market access and peer support. This is a chance to see if farming suits them, and to put their ideas to the test. In year 2 TestCroppers become FarmStarters, and take on up to ¼ acre sections to trial their growing skills and business ideas. If they prove viable, they may expand each year.
The Kindling Trust want to see more people growing food around Greater Manchester. We need more suppliers for our organic fruit and vegetable co-operative, Manchester Veg People, for our new veg box scheme - Veg Box People, and for the farm shop and farmers market at Abbey Leys (our 1st FarmStart site).
Kindling’s aim is to have FarmStart sites around Greater Manchester (we are currently establishing our 2nd site in Stockport), and for Kindling to secure a large farm within 50 miles for growers to move on to once they have been through the programme.
By trying to remove the barriers that stop people getting started in vegetable production, we hope to make it possible for a new generation of growers to emerge.