The Cooperative Enterprise Program at Inn Serendipity
A Partnership between Inn Serendipity and the Michael Fields Agricultural Institute
Based at either Inn Serendipity or Michael Fields Agricultural Institute, the Cooperative Enterprise Program is a unique collaboration between Inn Serendipity and the Michael Fields Agricultural Institute (MFAI) to foster and encourage sustainable agricultural enterprise development. Merging resources and skills from both organizations, the Cooperative Enterprise Program provides young people enthusiastic about running a sustainable farming business an opportunity to transform their ideas into real operations. The program provides a "second-year" training opportunity for a entrepreneurial intern who has completed MFAI's 8-month organic and biodynamic intensive gardening internship (or comperable CRAFT program, see below).
In 2006, Andrea Weimer started her own organic, fresh cut flower business, Earth Angel Flowers, while being based at Michael Fields Agricultural Institute and serving Milwaukee markets, retail outlets, floral arrangements for weddings and special events, and CSA subscription. For more about her business, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2002 and based at Inn Serendipity, Simple Abundance Farm was created by Janet House and operated on premise. In 2000 and 2001, Morning Star Garden was created, and later expanded, operating on premise by Amy Kremen, Kristen Vetterlein, and David Stanger.
For those interested in becoming a farmer, the Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training (CRAFT) is a yearly program of organic and biodynamic farmers and market gardeners whose mission is to strengthen a farm intern's awareness of the nature and requirements of farming/gardening. Through orientation programs, monthly workshops, farm event calendars, intern exchanges and intern transition workshops focusing on second-year opportunities, CRAFT broadens the training of interns and enables them to experience the importance and power of forming close associations and a supportive community among their peers. For details about other intern opportunities with CRAFT member growing operations, contact the CSA Learning Center at Angelic Organics in Caledonia, IL by calling 815-389-8455, or e-mail Learn@AngelicOrganics.com