Fresh Facts: Family Farming with Kyle Reynolds from KMK Organic Farms

Hello to all of the recipients of the Abundant Harvest Organics weekly box of goodness. We here at KMK Organic Farms in Kingsburg, owned and operated by Kyle and Michele Reynolds. Our farm has blossomed ever since we joined the Abundant Harvest Organics team eight seasons ago. We really want to thank each and every one of you for your support each week.

Eight years ago we leased thirty acres to go with our original eight acres of farmland. We were a little naïve about how difficult it would be to sell that much more produce, but we love farming and we went ahead to pursue a more sustainable way of living our dream. That spring, as the first harvest was on the horizon and we were up to our necks in organic produce with nowhere to go, we got a call from Vernon of Abundant Harvest Organics.

He came and toured our farms and after the tour he asked us to join his team at Abundant Harvest Organics. When Vernon left that morning I called my wife and told her I believe we just had a life-changing event, and turns out we had. Back then, Abundant Harvest Organics packed your boxes one day a week and had five hundred members. Today they pack boxes two days a week and have ten times the subscribers.

Being involved with a vibrant and growing business like this one is an amazing thing and we have grown with Abundant in many ways. Before our association with AHO we had been farming on a small scale—selling our produce at farmer’s markets, directly to restaurants, and helping other small CSA farms.

We were small, but we were growing. From a start with one acre in 1997, to eight acres in 2008, and then, with the big jump to the thirty acre lease next to the original acre, the explosion of producing healthy produce really began.

As the years have gone by, our acreage isn’t the only thing that’s grown, our extended farming family has grown along the way too. In 1997, Michele and I were doing all the farm work ourselves, in addition to working off the farm full time.

I listened to a wise farmer once speak at a farm conference on sustainability and his answer was, “If the children of the family farm are involved and want to take the business into the next generation, then it is sustainable.”

If you look into our farms, you will find that all of our family farming partners have their children involved and they have the passion for this way of life.

Our daughter and son-in-law, Kristi and Trevor, are making a portion of their living through our farm. Kristi is “The Farmers Daughter”. Kristi grew up helping on the farm and selling at the farmers markets in our local area. After graduating from college she came back to the farm to start her business. We could not be happier.

And have you heard the news? The Farmer’s Daughter had another baby. Talk about sustainability, who knows, Kristi just might be able to hand the farm down to what would be the third generation of Reynolds farmers sometime in the future.

To end this little story, we would like to say a little bit about Vernon and his family. We work directly with his kids Heather and Erik, we have worked with them every week since we started with AHO. They have been the nicest and easiest-to-work-with people we have ever done business with.

Each week I work with Erik on what KMK will harvest for you and on the planning side for future harvests. It is amazing how he balances all the farmers’ wants and needs on a weekly and annual basis. Heather runs the packing end and runs that show with the same confident smile as her dad.

Now to the man that makes it all happen, Vernon. This guy is why Abundant Harvest is what it is. He and Carol have given you, the subscribers, and us, the farmers, something very special.

We thank you subscribers and the Petersons for all we have gained from this awesome and abundant arrangement.

Author Cristina Gutierrez

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