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Coralville – AFRICANDO FARM
Why do you want to farm?
Farming has always been my passion. Born and raised in The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where my parents owned and operated our 123-acre family farm, farming became embedded in me. I want to farm because I like and enjoy it and I like the fact that I can provide food to my family and community. Being a food producer brings joy to my heart and fulfills my long-time desire to impact and change other people’s lives.
What are you farming right now?
I am currently farming at the Johnson County Historical Poor Farm in Iowa City on 2 acres of land. I applied and signed a three-year lease with Johnson County through Iowa Valley Resource Conservation & Development. I directly sell my products – mostly eggplants and amaranth, and I plan on adding value to my hot pepper (habanero) production.
What’s your vision for your farm?
AFRICANDO FARM’s vision is to produce specialty vegetables of tropical regions and to add value to them for long shelf life.
Why do you want to participate in this program?
I would like to participate in this program to enhance my farming knowledge and experience working with other experienced farmers through mentorship. This program also supports farmers in writing their business plan, which I desperately need to develop. The financial benefit this program offers through the savings match is just another bonus that will help me reach my goal to purchase land or equipment.