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Summary

A practical, systems-based approach for a more sustainable farming operation.

To many people today, using the words "factory" and "farm" in the same sentence is nothing short of sacrilege. In many cases, though, the same sound business practices apply whether you are producing cars or carrots. Author Ben Hartman and other young farmers are increasingly finding that incorporating the best new ideas from business into their farming can drastically cut their wastes and increase their profits, making their farms more environmentally and economically sustainable.

By explaining the lean system for identifying and eliminating waste and introducing efficiency in every aspect of the farm operation, The Lean Farm makes the case that small-scale farming can be an attractive career option for young people who are interested in growing food for their community. Working smarter, not harder, also prevents the kind of burnout that start-up farmers often encounter in the face of long, hard, backbreaking labor. Lean principles grew out of the Japanese automotive industry, but they are now being followed by progressive farms around the world.

Using examples from his own family's one-acre community-supported farm in Indiana, Hartman clearly instructs other small farmers in how to incorporate lean practices in each step of their production chain, from starting a farm and harvesting crops to training employees and selling goods. While the intended audience for this book is small-scale farmers who are part of the growing local food movement, Hartman's prescriptions for high-value, low-cost production apply to farms and businesses of almost any size or scale that hope to harness the power of lean in their production processes.

©2015 Ben Hartman (P)2018 Chelsea Green Publishing

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Inspirational! Offering hope for Micro Farmers

This is an excellent book. I will revisit it numerous times whilst implementing its strategies. A must read for anyone interested in starting a farm.

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  • Ifish4eyes
  • 29-07-18

informative a good listen

good narrator. giving you lots to think about. good addition to many books that you should listen to before you start any business

6 people found this helpful

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  • Calvin
  • 16-02-20

The Lean Farm

The good - Some interesting lean ideas from a perspective other than manufacturing or assembly. The no-so-good - Too many times the author veered off the lean topic. It started to sound like I was in attendance of a “save the environment convention”. Not why I bought this book.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Patron
  • 11-05-20

Political and Preachy

Political, not factual information. Looking for a fact filled text, not this. Couldn't get past the early pages. Preachy.

1 person found this helpful

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  • L. Caza
  • 13-04-20

Practical helps for small farmers

Interesting and practical for making a living on less than an acre. This is more about procedure than crops.

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  • Brion Hurley
  • 19-09-18

Share with someone who works on a farm

This is not a detailed technical book on lean concepts, which makes it ideal for beginners and those who want to see how lean is applied to farms. Many concepts can be applied at home. Highly recommended!

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  • Mother of Chickens
  • 13-09-18

Great primer on both Lean and farming

This is a great primer on both Lean and farming. I learned more nuggets on both and found the integration of both to be fascinating.

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  • TheAwesomest
  • 16-08-18

Great read for a Green Belt!

I have experience as a Green Belt in corporate America and am transitioning to market gardening. This book beautifully merges two subjects I love. I enjoyed the fast-paced teaching of concepts and relevant examples.

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  • Angi Grassley
  • 14-07-20

Really helpful info

A lot of great suggestions to help young farmers be successful. Really enjoyed it. I wish this audio book came with a PDF so I could see what he was talking about in some of his descriptions.

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  • Joshua
  • 19-05-20

Absolutely astounding!

This book is FULL of absolutely wonderful information. I will listen again and again as I scale up my business.

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  • Anna M LaRosa
  • 10-05-20

great ideas for any size farm

I hadn't thought of applying lean to the farm! at work it makes sense, and after this book I see that little lean principles had made it home, but so many more applications to increase flow and productivity even in my small family farm.