What would you do if you only had a year left to live?

Fraser on the Thorung La high pass
The Thorong La high pass (5416m) on the Annapura Circuit Trek in Nepal is one of the highest points in the world for trekkers. The views of Annapurna I (8091m) and Dhaulagiri I (8167m) are literally breathtaking. I did this with my partner Viktoria in 2008, alone –without guides or sherpas.

That’s the question that compelled me to quit the rat race and travel around the world for 5 years. The answer to that question is the reason why I started Farmwell.

I was interviewed by Diego Footer of Permaculture Voices to talk about pursuing your dreams and how to get started on your own personal journey. That could be quitting a meaningless job, starting a local food business, or selling your possessions to fund that dream trip.

This may be a subject you’re familiar with, but you probably haven’t heard this take on it before. It’s 7 years of lessons from life and business condensed in 1 hour.


What would you do if you only had one year left to live?

Farmwell just got faster!


Sept 23, 2014

Farmwell was at times unacceptably sluggish for people outside of North America and Europe. Especially Australians and New Zealanders we’re getting too many opportunities to practise patience.

The performance of some pages was simply unacceptable.

But today, I’m happy to let you know that we’ve just rolled out a number of updates to our servers and worldwide distribution network to speed things up. Now when you view a page, much of the content comes from servers nearby you (unless you live in Antarctica or Timbuktu).

That means it should be noticeably faster for everybody with a half-decent internet connection.

We’ll be monitoring things going forward and we’ll always be doing stuff to make it a little faster here and a little faster there, but there should be a noticeable improvement as of today.

So now you can save your patience for life’s more important things.

Flickr Creative Commons photo by Kerri Lee Smith

10 Lessons for Food Startups From the Movie ‘Chef’

Chef movie review

I know shockingly little about Hollywood or pop culture.

I don’t even have TV.

But as a local food entrepreneur, the movie Chef got me thinking. Weaved into a fun and yummy story are 10 important lessons that you as a local food startup can use to keep yourself and business on track.

Let’s find out what they are.

Continue reading 10 Lessons for Food Startups From the Movie ‘Chef’

You Don’t Sell Food, You Sell a Story – Here’s How

Writing food product descriptions

There are two types of farmers: Those who love answering questions and those who don’t.

At farmer’s markets, customers flock to enthusiastic and chatty farmers and wait in line, even when prices are higher.

You’re not selling food, you’re selling the story that goes with it.

Why is this? And how to write food product descriptions your customers will love?

Let’s take a look.

Continue reading You Don’t Sell Food, You Sell a Story – Here’s How

New in Farmwell: Control who sees your site

Aug 12, 2014

We are pleased to announce that farms and food hubs can now hide their Farmwell site from the public (and search engines).

This is done by locking it with a password. This especially useful for members-only co-ops and buying clubs. Anyone without the password will only see an empty page:


And for everybody’s convenience, you only have to enter the password the first time you visit a locked page (or unless the password changes).

If you wish to make your Farmwell site private, go to your Settings and switch off public visibility, like this:




7 Simple Steps to Start a Food Hub

Local food hub

Perhaps you’ve been thinking what you’re gonna to say to your boss when that big day comes.

“I hate this job. I quit!”, or

“I have a new boss now. It’s me”, or

“We need to talk. Please step into my cubicle…”

You know you’re going to do it. It’s just a matter of time. You already know why you should start a food hub.

Today, we’re going to talk about how.

It’s pretty easy. In fact, it’s only seven simple steps.

Continue reading 7 Simple Steps to Start a Food Hub

Why start a Food Hub?

Quit the rat race
Photo by Dan Silver

You’re stuck in a job that’s sucking the life out of you. Ok, it pays the bills and gives you a few holidays so you can recharge your batteries just enough to remain productive.

But are you happy?

Most people aren’t. They dream about turning a hobby or the love of local food into a small business, but those 6 years of college and the 12 years of schooling before that have only trained them to be cogs in a machine.

I know. I’ve been there.

But I’m here to tell you that if you are passionate about eating quality food, you can make a nice living and you don’t even need to know how to grow so much as a tomato.

Continue reading Why start a Food Hub?

Joel Salatin talks about the Future of Local Food

“I love it when we take technology developed for globalism and it becomes the way in for localization.” – Joel Salatin

In the first 4 minutes of this video interview with Dr. Mercola, Joel Salatin talks about the inefficiencies of farmer’s markets, the advantages of selling online to avoiding expensive brick and mortar and selling fresh local sustainable food directly to consumers.

New in Farmwell: Food Hubs Can Now Manage Farm Profiles

May 15, 2014

Many of our food hubs have been requesting to list food on behalf of farmers that aren’t already on Farmwell or that maybe don’t have an internet connection.

After all, there’s a whole generation of farmers out there who’d rather “stick with farmin’ and leave the sellin’ to the young bucks and does.”

Food hubs were pleading with us to do something. No only were some of their best farmers not online, but some have yet to buy their first mobile phone!

Something had to be done.

So we went back to the drawing board to see what could be done. The question was how can we make this happen while still maintaining field-to-fork transparency for consumers?

The answer was simple:

Let food hubs manage a farm’s profile and list food on their behalf, but make the food hub responsible to consumers by having them sign the statement of quality guarantee. That means food hubs will be rated based on the quality of the food they source. By putting their reputation on the line, food hubs get the extra motivation to really know their farmers, and locavores get even more great fresh local food from traditional farms that don’t have internet access.

Here’s how easy it is for a food hub to add a farmer:

1) Add a farmer/producer in a click.

Food Hub Manages Local Farm

2) Tell the farm’s story.


3) List their food with ease.


4) After, you can switch between your hub and farms like this.


All food is instantly added to your food hub’s online offerings:


You’ll notice that each food shows who grew it and where, with links for more info.

Pretty easy, eh? You can also watch this 7 minute video to see it in action, or sign up now for a free trial and give it a go yourself.