This is a business owner who has reached out to Slow Money NC.
How did you hear about Slow Money NC?:
I have known Carol and Kathleen for years now, I honestly don’t remember how I first became aware of Slow Money.
Tell us your story. What is your business idea? Tell us your plan.
We are CATHIS Farm in Lillington, NC. We are a pasture based livestock farm and just celebrated 5 years. We raise Freedom Ranger chickens on pasture for both wholesale and retail customers. Each year we continue to gain new customers and this year anticipate raising over 6500 chickens on pasture. We have been using smaller chicken tractors that get moved daily but only hold 50 birds each. With 20 of these chicken tractors we are only able to raise 4500 birds this year. We would like to add a mobile range coop that can hold 600 broilers at a time and be moved daily. This will increase our capacity by 2400 and bringing us very close to the needed 6500 chickens.
Please briefly describe your commitment to sustainable food systems in North Carolina.:
All of our animals are either on pasture in open fields or digging in the woods clearing brush. The cows and sheep graze ahead of the chickens mowing down the pasture so they have tender young grass to forage on when they are moved everyday. We only feed organic grain or non-gmo feed to all of our animals and have actually become a dealer now for Reedy Fork Organic Feed and Sunrise Feed.
What will your sales be? What do you anticipate your profits/your margins will look like? How will you make the money to pay this loan back?:
Our sales of the chickens raised in the new mobile range coop will be wholesale to restaurants and specialty grocery stores that we have long standing relationships with. As their business continues to grow the demand for our products increases. Andrea Reusing of Lantern and The Durham is now going to be using our chicken exclusively at Lantern. She has been using CATHIS Farm chickens at The Durham for the past 3 years, first with Cool Hand Meats and then directly from CATHIS Farm. We have run the numbers and figure for a profit margin of .70 cents per lb of chicken, each chicken averages 3.25 lbs with a total of 600 chickens per mobile range coop. That gives us a profit margin of approximately $1365 per batch. And includes $177 per batch for depreciation of the mobile range coop.
Have you borrowed money before? How much did you borrow? From where? How long was the term? Is there a balance still due on that loan?:
Car loans, with 1 outstanding still. Our primary residence has a mortgage plus 2 rental homes and the additional 44 acres we have purchased all have mortgages.
Do you have people who would vouch for your credit worthiness? Who are they?: Reedy Fork Organic Farm
Piedmont Custom Meats
Tell us about your business background. Have you been in business before?:
Yes, I have been operating CATHIS Farm full time for the last 5 years. Previously I ran businesses doing lawn care and home remodeling.
Are there other lenders involved in your project or business?:
What is your timeline for this project? Would you like it to start in a month? 6 months? A year?:
As soon as we have raised the funds we will be ordering a mobile range coop from Cobb Creek Farm. The sooner the better.
Lots more photos here!