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Peck Produce eyes farm expansion near Boston-Edison

Peck Produce, an urban farm in the Boston-Edison area, is looking to expand this year in terms of the food it sells and the land it farms.

The 3-year-old urban farm occupies close to one square block in the 1600 block of Lawrence Street on the former site of Peck Elementary School. The Michigan Land Bank sold the four acres of vacant land to Noah Link and Alex Bryan not long after the school was torn down. Now Peck Produce is working to expand to a couple of abandoned vacant lots across the street later this growing season.

Peck Produce, also known as Food Field, was able to tough out this last winter despite losing a number of fruit trees and all of its bees.

"There are a number of other things we need to restock this year," Link says.

That doesn't mean the urban farm is just trying to regroup after one of the hardest winters on record. Peck Produce plans to begin harvesting fish from its newly installed aquaponics operation. It's also putting up a new hoop house and plans to finish installing solar panels that will take the farm off the electric grid later this spring.

Peck Produce has joined the City Commons CSA to help sell more of its produce faster. Peck Produce will also erect a vegetable stand on its grounds this summer to encourage more community involvement.

"We're also going to do more pop-up dinners to get more people out to the farm," Link says.

All of this new activity has allowed Peck Produce to hire its first employee. It plans to bring two part-time seasonal people on this summer to help handle the increased workload.

Source: Noah Link co-owner of Peck Produce
Writer: Jon Zemke

Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.
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