Farmer and Owner, Local Cooling Farms and Laughing Buddha Nursery

Kate grew up in a rural area south of Madison, Wisconsin, surrounded by conventional corn and soy fields. Her parents always grew a large vegetable garden and composted, but while in school, she never imagined going into agriculture professionally. She studied journalism at the University of Missouri and held several reporting jobs prior to serving in AmeriCorps and moving to New Orleans in 2009. She worked as a fundraiser in nonprofits and universities for several years when she met her husband, Grant, at his gardening shop, Laughing Buddha Nursery. Today they still operate the store, which helps customers grow vegetables organically, as well as Local Cooling Farms, their diversified, pasture-based farm, where they raise beef, pork, goat, poultry and rabbits. Kate has developed the farm’s neighborhood delivery hub model where they sell the majority of their farm products, as well as seasonal produce, dairy, ferments, preserves from other local farms.

Panel Discussion: The Sellers Perspective, Friday, March 8, 10:30 am – 12:00 noon

The Sellers’ Perspective panel will feature panelists who utilize various outlets for their products – grocery stores, farmers’ markets, direct-to-consumers, specialty shops, etc. We’ll investigate how and why they made the choices they did and the pros and cons they see with each outlet. There will be a Q&A period for the audience.