Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
MOFGA's Farmer-in-Residence

Programs \ Farmer Programs \ Farmer In Residence

Alex Ethier operates Killdeer Croft as MOFGA's Farmer-in-Residence at our Common Ground Education Center.

Meet MOFGA’s current farmer in residence!

Alex Ethier – Killdeer Croft

Alex Ethier owns and operates Killdeer Croft on the grounds of MOFGA as the current farmer in residence. His partner, Soleil Pacetti, while in pursuit of a nursing degree, remains to be a source of support and strength for the growth of the operation. In the Spring of 2017 he began his foray into independent crop production while working at a grass-fed dairy in central Maine. He continued to grow in 2018, diversifying his crop selection, expanding markets, and beginning to focus production on cut greens and salad mixes. Relying on minimal tillage practices, and intensive production design, he has strived for a core number of crops seamlessly available throughout Spring, Summer, and Fall. Alex is grateful for the opportunity to call MOFGA the temporary home of his business, and is excited to join the broader JP community.

MOFGA's Farmer in Residence Program offers aspiring farmers committed to organic agriculture and public outreach the opportunity to live and farm at MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center in Unity, Maine. Farmers in Residence participate in MOFGA's Journeyperson Program, which gives new and aspiring organic farmers access to the land, resources, and support they need to establish successful farm enterprises.

MOFGA's property in Unity encompasses 250+ acres in predominantly agricultural Waldo County. In addition to hosting the Common Ground Country Fair every September, the land is home to MOFGA's staff offices, a number of livestock barns, an exhibition hall, and an ecologically-designed farmhouse. Farmer-in-Residence Journeypersons have access to the farmhouse to use as a dwelling and headquarters for their farming activities. They also have access to MOFGA's agricultural resource base with which to establish and develop their own farm businesses.

Potential opportunities include:

  • 2 acres of flat, irrigable, certified organic sandy loam for market gardening or row crop production (with the potential for off-site expansion)
  • nursery crop production
  • woodlot management and forest products
  • organic seed production, breeding, and variety selection
  • value-added processing

Farmer in Residence Journeypersons have a wide choice of the particular farming methods or techniques that they wish to use, provided that they comply with organic standards. Journeypersons in residence at MOFGA receive an annual stipend of $3,000 and are entitled to the proceeds from the sale of any farm products they raise or make. Farmer in Residence Journeypersons are expected to provide 16 hours of assistance each month with landscaping and grounds maintenance in addition to their own farming activities. The position generally lasts for 2 years, with the possibility of a mutually-agreed-upon extension.

MOFGA Farmer in Residence qualifications:

  • A minimum of two full seasons of practical experience in an organic farming system and a demonstrable commitment to pursuing organic agriculture as a career, preferably in Maine.
  • An entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Strong communication skills and willingness to engage with interested visitors to MOFGA, both on a continuous, informal basis and at various special events hosted by MOFGA throughout the year. Those with a strong need for privacy are discouraged from applying.
  • Intellectual curiosity and a commitment to active and semi-structured learning under the supervision of MOFGA's Educational Programs Director.
  • Kindness, creativity, flexibility, a strong work ethic, and a good sense of humor.

Next application process for Farmer in Residence will be in fall of 2021.

To Apply: use the application forms on the main Journeyperson page

Farmer in Residence applicants are strongly encouraged to visit the farm before applying.

For more information, email [email protected] or call 207-568-4142.