|One line description||Rising Pheasant Farms is a bicycled-based urban farm supplying Detroit markets with naturally-grown produce.|
Though we are a small-scale farming operation, we hope to reach as many residents as possible. As a young entrepreneur, I bring fresh ideas and new possibilities. My assistant manager, Mr. Howard, has lived in our neighborhood since early childhood and brings a grounding perspective, essential community relations, and local history to the project. As a team, we feel that it is necessary to think outside of the automobile “box” and take advantage of the opportunities of a bicycle-based business. As entrepreneurs, we use a ‘triple bottom line’ approach that requires economic sustainability with a social and environmental conscience. We feel that our bicycle-based business serves that bottom line, while acting as a model for other low-income residents to meet their community’s needs by bike!
How is your venture unique and innovative? max. 200 words (20 points)*
Though bicycle-based businesses are seen around the world, they are relatively unknown in the United States and especially car-centric Detroit. Through creativity and determination, we’ve developed produce-specific trailer systems to move delicate fresh vegetable to market and local restaurants. In 2010, Rising Pheasant Farms annual fuel costs totaled $13.00. Besides reducing expenses and allowing for a financially flexible operation, our bicycle-based business model addresses the social and environmental impact of our current petroleum-dependent food system. Most farm operations use gasoline-powered equipment for all daily activities as well as hauling produce long distances by truck. Using bicycles and hand tools, we are developing new approaches to grow our food in the city and deliver it to our local markets without relying on petroleum-based products. At the market, we are able to sell our produce to our neighbors at a more affordable price because of this reduction in transportation and operational costs. With a future of increasing resource costs ahead, Rising Pheasant Farms is laying down a new path towards sustainability.
Is your enterprise scalable or replicable? max. 150 words (20 points)*
Bicycles are still the most common form of transportation around the world. In many countries, bicycle-based businesses are nothing new and rather common, but put in a different context–Detroit, for example–the advantages and challenges are real and exciting. Many low-income urban residents in Detroit and other cities can use our model for a low-investment, bicycle-based business to begin supporting themselves while meeting their community’s needs. We are also excited about the opportunities that bicycle-based businesses present for the youth in our community. Youth (15-22 years old) unemployment in Detroit is extremely high. As Rising Pheasant Farms expands in production, we hope to employ youth that are excited about bicycles to use their skills and experiences to expand our bicycle transport operation. Few things are more ubiquitous than the bicycle, which is why a bicycle-based business model can be made accessible to nearly everyone regardless of income. Rising Pheasant Farms is working to inspire those possibilities and support entrepreneurs in their efforts towards a truly sustainable business model.
How would you demonstrate the success of your enterprise? max. 150 words (20 points)*
Rising Pheasant Farms has been a successful business since its establishment. With a “grow slow” mentality and a hard work ethic, we’ve continued to expand our farming operation and bicycle transportation system each year. We have been locally, national and internationally recognized for our work in urban agriculture and promoting bicycle-based businesses. We have a large dedicated customer base as well as a strong community of urban farmers/gardeners with whom we share our knowledge and experience.
Please see below for a list of articles featuring Rising Pheasant Farms:
We will also be in the Young Farmers Edition of Edible WoW this summer and are a finalist for the Young Farmer of the Year Award. http://www.ediblecommunities.com/wow/