71. John Kempf on Advanced Biological Farming
Who can you turn to for comprehensive information and assistance if your farm has produced one too many lackluster harvests?
We are honored to have John Kempf, the founder of Advancing Eco Agriculture, with us today on the Thriving Farmer Podcast! AEA is a leading plant nutrition and biostimulants consulting company. John is a top expert in the field of biological and regenerative farming. In 2006, he founded AEA to help fellow farmers by providing the education, tools, and strategies that will have a global effect on the food supply and those who are growing that supply. In today’s episode, we’ll dive deep into the fine scientific details on what makes the most healthy, fertile, and productive soil so that you may truly reap what you sow! We’ll discuss managing PH and magnesium levels, proper compost application and so much more. Whether you are a small, mid-sized or large farming operation, tuning into this episode is certain to level up your farming game!
What Advancing Eco Agriculture is all about 1:20
How John got started in farming 2:25
About the overarching principles of Advancing Eco Agriculture 5:18
About sap analysis and if it will become more mainstream in the coming years 8:51
How John manages soil testing 14:32
How to approach soil analysis for your unique farm situations 18:44
What (if any) types of crops act as indicators which warrant testing more than others 23:47
About the beginning steps to ensuring healthy soil in croplands 31:32
About the differences in procedure for smaller scale farms 37:00
John’s take on salt accumulation in protected cultures 42:32
How John manages short-term/long-term soil feeding 46:43
How often John recommends farmers do soil tests 49:43
How John goes about tackling high PH levels 51:38
How John goes about tackling high magnesium levels 53:58
About John’s preferences in terms of compost application 56:24
Why John opts to use compost tea in lieu of traditional compost 1.00:30
What questions farmers aren’t asking that they probably should be 1.02:49
Who John’s mentors were in his farming journey 1.06:19
What practices John would have liked to see the farmers he works with set into motion sooner 1.10:40
What John thinks about the concept of “too much” organic matter 1.13:58
John’s take on risk management in farming 1.16:07
What strategies AEA implements to hire the right help 1.21:39
The biggest mistake John sees new farmers making 1.26:58
What simple things advanced farmers practice to be more profitable 1.30:20
What new farmers should avoid 1.33:57
John’s favorite farming tool 1.34:35
John’s thoughts on the best time to start a farm 1.36:24
Where to find more about John and AEA 1.44:02
About the Guest:
John Kempf is a leading crop health consultant and designer of innovative soil and plant management systems. John is the founder of Advancing Eco Agriculture.
John, a member of the Amish community, grew up on a fruit and vegetable farm in Northeast Ohio and experienced first hand the challenges faced by many crop producers. Growing fresh market vegetables since 1994, John witnessed intensifying disease and insect pressure on crops which gradually failed to respond to the usual pesticide treatments.
John’s mission is to provide support to the world’s farmers and globally impact our food supply. He founded Advancing Eco Agriculture in 2006, which has quickly become a leader in the area of soil and plant nutrition. To learn more about John, visit his LinkedIn profile.
Resources and mentions:
Quality Agriculture book John interviews a group of growers, consultants, and scientists who describe how to think and farm differently in order to produce exceptional results in the field. Their remarkable insights will challenge you, encourage you, and inspire gratitude and joy for the rewards of working with natural systems. https://amzn.to/2UQYuDN
And if you want to keep the conversation going, join us in our Facebook Group to connect with us and other farmers looking to grow their business!
We also have six free eguides to help you be more effective on your farm (Winter Growing, Pastured Poultry, Washing Shed Efficiency, Profitable Farmers Toolkit, what to look for in a farm property, etc), which you can download here.