Leeds Grenville
Economic Development eNews | January 16, 2018
Business Profile
Funny Duck Farms is an award winner using new tech for year-round greens
ROCKSPRINGS - It's January, the snow is falling and yet Funny Duck Farms is growing fresh, green fodder for its animals.

Samantha Klinck, husband Aaron and her sister Jen Hart, made the decision less than a year ago to invest in hydroponic fodder units to provide better nutrition year-round for their mixed farm of chickens, ducks, sheep, pigs and cows. The innovation has earned the local farmers a 2017 Regional Agri-Innovation Award from the Province of Ontario (see related story below).

"The big thing for me is this is good nutrition for my animals year round," says Samantha, adding they are happy they invested in self-contained, insulated FodderWorks ("Animal Nutrition is no longer cut and dried") units at their two Morrison Road (Kitley Line 8) certified organic farms in Elizabethtown-Kitley. See the Fodder at Funny Duck Farms video.

"It's a good return on investment," she says. The farms are using less water and electricity. "We've seen no jump in our power bill whatsoever because we're using our water pump less," says Samantha. Some of the run-off water from the fodder units is directed in to their duck ponds.

"It's like springtime every day," says Jen. Various types of seed like wheat, barley and oats, are fed into the units on trays. Each unit produces in 4-6 days the same amount of feed as 50 acres of hayfield. 

"Our feed costs have dropped by 50%. It's feed at $900 a ton versus seed, which is $200 to $400 a ton," Samantha says.

They learned of the units from a friend from Saskatchewan, where the Klincks lived before moving to Ontario. It seemed like a good idea to try here, particularly since there have been two droughts in recent years. The units come from California. There have been a few glitches dealing with Canada's cold but overall they've been able to refine their operations to suit their needs.

Funny Duck Farms has between 30-35 Whole Farm CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) clients, providing them with baskets of items ranging from duck and chicken eggs, honey, beeswax salves, maple syrup, herbs, vegetables (more than 40 types over the year), cheese and pasture-raised poultry and meats. It is a sustainable, soybean-free, mixed organic farm.

"Unlike most traditional CSAs that are predominantly baskets of veggies, we offer a wider range of foods and also offer our members a selection of other organic products, such as flours, beans, dried fruits, rice and sea salt," says Samantha.

Learn more about Funny Duck Farms by visiting their Website and   Facebook page, where they have a five-star rating, or  Instagram . You can also send them an email.
Top feature photo: Samantha Klinck, co-owner of Funny Duck Farms, shares a moment with her Maremma Livestock Guardian pups and adults.

Samantha shows trays of seed in an insulated hydroponic unit, which runs even in cold, snowy conditions.

Jen removes a tray of fodder that is ready for their animals.

Heifers enjoy a meal. Jen says animals almost stampede to eat the fodder.
Celebrating Business

From left: Jen Hart, Aaron and Samantha Klinck of Funny Duck Farms near Frankville receive the Regional Agri-Food Innovation Award from Glengarry-Prescott-Russell MPP Grant Crack this past December. 
Area businesses cheered for Agri-Innovation
The Farmersville Community Abattoir (FCA), located on the outskirts of Athens, and this edition's featured business, Funny Duck Farms, are new recipients of the 2017 Premier's Regional Award for Agri-Food Innovation Excellence.

The awards are presented each year to innovative agri-food businesses boosting the local economy and creating jobs. 

The Farmersville Community Abattoir, located at 63 Addison Road, opened in late 2016 after Leeds Grenville livestock producers saw the need and rallied the community to secure funding. FCA is a not-for-profit corporation with a board of directors. The abattoir is being recognized for job creation, contributing to the long-term viability of agriculture in eastern Ontario and for helping provide more access to more local food.

FCA was profiled in the January 17, 2017 edition of  Leeds Grenville eNews.

Barbara Schaefer, FCA's board chair, with MPP Grant Crack.
Economic Development Office

Simon Chapelle joined the Leeds Grenville  Economic Development Team this month.
Economic Development team is growing
Simon Chapelle has joined the Leeds Grenville Economic Development team as Business Development Officer.

Simon comes to the United Counties with a diverse background as an experienced entrepreneur and consultant in finance, sales, marketing, research, data analysis, as well as grant and proposal writing. 

"I'm looking forward to working with Leeds Grenville businesses, municipal leaders, committees and communities," said Simon.

Simon served in Hastings County as chair of the board for Enterprise Facilitation - Small Business and Retention and as a member of the Economic Development Advisory Board. As a consultant, Simon provided contract and project management services and secured grant monies for business expansion and retention.  He holds a Masters in Public Administration (MPA) degree from Queen's University and has experience in working with  all levels of government. 
Celebrating Business
Rideau Lakes seeking business nominations
The Township of Rideau Lakes Economic Development Committee's Business Recognition Program is seeking nominations for it annual awards to be presented at the Business Recognition Breakfast on April 6th
  • Business of the Year - a company demonstrating commitment to the community and its residents
  • Business Innovation - showing "outside-the-box" thinking or upgrades to the business or services
  • Young Entrepreneur - Individuals under 35 years who either reside, operate or grew up in the Township
DEADLINE: Friday, February 9th.

Learn more about the award categories, guidelines and to see the nomination form visit the  Township Notices page. Submissions should be sent to Administrative Assistant Alison Merkley. Any questions contact Alison via  email.

Funding Opportunities

Applications now open for EODP funding
The Eastern Ontario Development Program (EODP) provides up to $100,000 non-repayable funding per project or up to 50% in reinbursement for projects demonstrating measurable economic outcomes including but not limited to job creation, increased productivity, creation of new products and entering new markets.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Wednesday, February 28, 4 p.m.
Email completed applications to eodp@valleycfdc.com. Funding decisions will be announced in early April. 

For eligible communities in North Leeds and full program details on funding streams, parameters or to download the application visit the Valley Heartland Community Futures Development Corporation website or call Business Development Officer and EODP Coordinator Amber Coville at 613-283-7002, ext. 110.
Workshops and Seminars
Entering and Expanding 
in the Chinese market

Hosted by the Kingston Economic Development Corporation in collaboration with the Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in Toronto, this one-day summit features 12 visiting speakers on the topic as well as local speakers.

WHEN: Friday, January 26, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
WHERE: Four Points by Sheraton, 285 King Street East, Kingston.
COST: $100 for businesses located outside of the City of Kingston, free for Kingston businesses

For more information email Business Development Officers  Carey Bidtnes or Yina Wang
Addressing difficult behaviour in the workforce

Renée Gendron of Vitae Dynamics Inc. is the speaker for this workshop to help employers deal with behavioural issues hampering team development and difficult customers. You are encouraged to send conflict situations in advance to eodp@valleycfdc.com and to come prepared to share and interact.

WHEN: Tuesday, January 30, 1-4:30 p.m.
WHERE: Valley Heartland CFDC, 91 Cornelia Street West, Smiths Falls
COST: $45. Registration includes snacks and any necessary printed materials
Safety Solutions and Mental Health in the Workplace

The HR Essentials Series hosted by the Employment and Education Centre will offer information on how to begin establishing a health and safety program and an awareness session on workplace mental health.
WHEN: Wednesday, February 7, Registration 7:30 a.m. Presentations: 7:45 a.m., 8:30 a.m. 
WHERE: Employment and Education Centre, 105 Strowger Boulevard, Brockville
COST: Free. Coffee and snacks provided. Reserve a spot by calling 613-498-2111, ext. 245, or email kim@eecentre.com
Learn more about these sessions and how to register on our Workshops and Seminars page.
Workshops and Seminars