How To Keep A 5th Generation Family Farm Going? Just Add Cannabis

Julie Weed – Jun 29, 2022

It’s tough making money by growing apples – global competition has driven prices down to just twenty-five cents a pound and unexpected pests, bad weather, or labor shortages can have severe consequences. That’s why Eddie Brennan of Beak and Skiff Orchards near Syracuse New York jumped in to grab a one-acre cannabis-growing license from the state when they became available. Cannabis will fetch $500 per pound he estimates, which is two thousand times the revenue of a pound of apples.

To diversify the family business over the years, and bring in income outside of the fall harvest, the orchard has added a tasting room, a pick your own apples business, a hard cider distillery, and a summer concert series. Cannabis may finally be the puzzle piece said Brennan, that lets the family farm make it to the 6th generation.

Brennan’s company will join a fast-growing marketplace. According to 2022 MJBiz Factbook, retail cannabis sales in the U.S. are expected to surpass $33 billion by the end of this year.

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