The Good Shepherd Conservancy

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Lindsborg, Kansas, US

Frank Reese, a fourth generation poultry farmer, has dedicated his life to single-handedly caring for the oldest continuous bred flock of heritage turkeys in America on his 160-acre farmstead in Lindsborg, Kansas. His dedication to preserving genetic biodiversity in our food system and his expertise in poultry husbandry has been recognized by high profile media including National Geographic, Vogue, Saveur, and the New York Times. Frank’s legacy and institutional knowledge is entirely unique, and is increasingly threatened by corporate factory farming. Thus, in partnership with MASS, he is starting the Good Shepherd Conservancy, an educational hub for breeding poultry, training farmers, chefs, and students, partnering with institutions, and engaging the public, to ensure that his vital knowledge is not lost.

This mission of the Conservancy is to preserve and protect biodiversity through a unique model of agricultural education, ecological resilience, and food system innovation. Facilitated teaching opportunities will engage an interdisciplinary group of farmers, community groups, agricultural advocacy organizations, universities, government agencies, thought-leaders, chefs, and students through activities and immersion opportunities on site. Furthermore, the Conservancy will participate in the active rebuilding of rural infrastructure that has been damaged by industrial-scale agribusiness and that is necessary for the redevelopment of regional economies, food systems, and communities.

In order to operate as a hub of agricultural education and advocacy, the Conservancy will include an archive/library, a visitor center, agricultural experiment station/classrooms, a teaching kitchen/restaurant, dorms, instruction space, and diverse agroecology site-wide.