The low-tech strategies used by Jean-Martin Fortier (JM) and his wife Maude-Hélèn, kept their start-up costs to a minimum and overhead expenses low . Amazingly their farm became profitable after only a few years of production.
With only 1½ acres of cultivated permanent beds, this micro farm gross more than $140 000 per year with operating margins of about 60 per cent, enough to financially sustain their family.
The focus at la Grelinette has been to grow better-not bigger- in order to optimize the cropping system, making it more lucrative and viable in the process.
“We challenge the belief that the small family farm cannot stay afloat,”
~ Jean-Martin Fortier (JM)
“When it comes to commercial vegetable growing,” he writes in the first chapter, “the idea of a profitable micro-farm is sometimes met with skepticism by people in the farming world. It is even possible that some naysayers would try to discourage an aspiring farmer from starting an op- eration like ours, stating that produc- tion simply won’t be enough to make ends meet for a family.”
But Fortier says his farm, Les Jar- dins de la Grelinette, is living proof that micro-farming can provide a comfortable livelihood for a family.
Look through these photos and videos to get some ideas for your homestead. Also check out Jean-Martin’s new book.
Click below to watch an interview with JM and see more photos of this amazing micro farm