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MarkWaldenPhoto2Mark Walden has a 14-acre farm in southern Madison County on the Rockcastle County line. On the property, he grows a variety of produce sold at different outlets.  With the SOAR Farm loan, Mr. Walden will add fruit production to his mix as he feels that fruit is a highly marketable farm product in the region.  Fruit are primarily perennials and take 6-months to three years before production is consistent.  With proper management, a fruit installation can increase yields by up to 30% per year until they reach maturity at 8-10 years old.  Apples, peaches, pears and plums will be among the fruits grown.

The SOAR Small Production Loan Fund is a low-interest financing resource designed to assist small producers grow healthy, nutritional foods so that they can move into commercial production. The goal is to support and educate growers to develop a strong local food system in eastern and southern Kentucky that will be market-supported and result in a profit for the growers.


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