Wild Folk Farm in Benton, Maine is leading the way to rice paddie ecosystems in Maine. We are developing an educational, research and commercialized rice operation. Currently there are no commercial rice growers in the state, and only a sprinkling of homesteading rice practices. Most domestic rice farms in the United States are monocultures that rely heavily on fossil fuel-driven mechanized cultivation and harvesting processes, and chemical sprays and fertilizers. Our proposed systems are ecologically beneficial and symbiotic, adaptable to otherwise inaccessible farmland (low-lying wet clay soils), void of chemical inputs, and after initial excavation of the paddy areas, non-reliant on fuel-driven tools and machines. Arsenic is not an issue in our rice.
Two years of results have already indicated higher yields, reduced input costs, and beautiful cultures. In creating wetlands we have provided homes for many threatened species. Like a fresh, local, heirloom tomato, our rice varieties are rich in flavor. However, it will take us additional capital and energy now to create the system, as well as time and research to figure out what methodologies and varieties work best in this region. Hence indiegogo!