ACRE is a sustainable urban farm helping Detroiters eat healthy, local food by providing the highest-quality rare and heirloom produce possible.
Ryan Anderson ate a carrot at a Washington D.C. farmer’s market. Before he knew it, he and former classmate Hannah Clark had quit their jobs in D.C. and Chicago, apprenticed under urban farmers in Detroit, and were on their way to starting ACRE farm. It was quite a carrot.Ok, there may have been a few more steps in-between, but you get the big picture: ACRE is the result of Ryan and Hannah’s desire to meaningfully connect with food, soil, and community. Though the start was anything but easy, the response to their business was overwhelmingly positive. In one of their first seasons, they sold out of everything they made available to local restaurants. The first CSA shares were snapped up. Neighbors expressed gratitude that an empty lot they feared would become a condominium instead became a source of healthy, local produce.
After operating on leased land for five years, ACRE needed to expand its operation to meet the needs of the local market. Steward provided financing that allowed ACRE to purchase 0.69 acres of vacant land in Core City. The land was converted to support produce production and ACRE established a hoop house, water pump, and irrigation system to support the growing business.
Hannah and Ryan’s commitment to quality is evident in the unique heirloom varieties they produce—spicy, sweet Cosmic Purple carrots, Poona Kheera cucumbers, and Moon and Stars watermelons. It’s also reflected in their dedication to profitability. In order to give back to the Detroit community for the long-term, they are committed to cultivating an urban agriculture business that is profitable and self-sustaining.As ACRE provides the produce and connection Detroit needs to rebuild a vibrant, local food culture, Steward ensures ACRE has the tools and resources they need to realize their goals.