What We Do
A 501(C)(3) Organization
Vets Farmacy’s Mission: To train Veterans to be Profitable, Sustainable, Organic Farmers. Veterans are paid while they train to become independent farmers of Medicinal Herbs.
They learn the basics from soil management to growing product; from garden planning to product processing, from marketing to spreadsheets.
Many of our returning Veterans are looking for new careers and, at the same time, find themselves in need of various forms of healing. Farm work is a way to address both.
There is a growing demand in the United States for quality, organic medicinal herbs and Western North Carolina is fast becoming a major player in filling this need. Our climate and soil combine to foster the growth of a large number of highly sought after field and woodland plants.
We are mentored by the Agricultural Research Station in Mills River, NC which is run by both NC State University and Cooperative Extension.
Rich and Lorri trained with our local Organic Growers School and were part of the first graduating class of their Farm Beginnings Program. We are active participants of the Western NC Medicinal Herb Club and Forest Farm Stewards programs, run by Cooperative Extension and The Mills River Research Station.
History: Vets Farmacy was started by Rich Steinhoff and Lorri Bura in 2014 as a way to give back to the community in a meaningful way. It is run at Green Heart Gardens in Candler, North Carolina on over 19 acres of USDA Certified Organic land including both meadow and woodlands. They began the program with their own funds. It has recently become a 501(c)3 to enable them to better serve more people.
The Vets Farmacy Program: combines Hands On farm work and education. Participants learn the best ways to grow over 30 different types of plants that are sold for use in many kinds of Natural Healing including: Herbal teas, tinctures, syrups and salves as well as Homeopathic Remedies. Instruction combines lessons on growing, harvesting and drying plants as well as wild crafting (picking plants that grow naturally on our land). They also learn about which part of the plants are used and the healing properties of each plant. There are field trips to other farms, places where herbs are processed, stores where the herbs are sold… T
Marketing: Vets Farmacy product is sold to Natural Product Companies and to several stores in the Asheville, NC area. We have several contracts in place and are currently in negotiations with an online provider as well.
to be used for….
1) Paying, transporting and feeding of Vets
2) construction of housing and additional processing capacity;
3) short term renting of farm equipment
4) stipends and honorariums for outside instructors
empower vets to learn and earn
$25 gives a vet work gloves for a season; $50 lets us get vets 'herb buckets' that last;
$100 lets us provide a week long scholarship for a single vet ....that's food, pay, transportation, books
$400 funds a complete team of 4 vets for a whole week!!!!
$500 lets us have hand tools, cleaners, cleaning cloths for a growing season
$1000 covers planting needs, short-term machine rentals, seeds, mulch
$5000 let's us build a housing unit $10,000 we can build a processing house and generate enough $$ to double our student population next yr.
Who We Are
PEOPLE/FARMERS WHO HAVE FOUND A WAY TO HELP THOSE WHO HAVE SERVED US
Our instructors are from various specialties and some of the lessons will also take place at the Mills River Research Station facility (run by (NC) Cooperative Extension and NC State University).
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