What does it mean to own and run a hydro-organic farm? For Karen and Colin Archipley, Co-Founders of the B Corporation Archi’s Acres, this means producing organic crops. These crops utilize up to 90% less water with 3-5 times the crop production. Their B Corp also has a strong commitment to building sustainable organic agriculture systems. The company is also dedicated to implementing advanced technologies, employee welfare, and community outreach. Read on to find out more about Karen and Colin and their North County San Diego, CA-based B Corp.
The mission of Archi’s Acres.
“Our mission is to benefit society as a whole by delivering healthy food and education. We also help improve the lives of U.S. veterans, strengthen local economies, and act as stewards of the environment. Colin and I found our property between his second and third tour in Iraq as an Infantry Squad Leader. We moved here on Oct 14, 2005. Colin was in Iraq at that time it was our First Water Bill that spurred the hydroponic organic idea for our property.”
The deeper value of being a B Corp, not owning it.
“It is an honor to be a B Corporation. I like that you cannot buy it, you have to BE it. It represents the idea that in the pursuit of profit and self-improvement, we can also have a positive impact to those around us, our community, and the environment. That is very important to us.”
Why success, for us, is about more than selling basil.
“We have had the honor of being recognized by The White House for Champions of Change for Veteran Entrepreneurship, which we were nominated by one of our fellow veterans. Our team also gets to train transitioning active duty, veterans and civilians, through an agribusiness incubator program we created in partnership with Cal Poly, Pomona, to introduce them to sustainable organic agriculture and entrepreneurship. We had the honor to work with Rural Advisor to the President to make sure that veterans could use their VA Home Loan to purchase a farm. For us, success has been more than selling basil which is what we are known for. It has been about community, environment and making organic food accessible to all, using sustainable practices. We are promoting the idea of reinvigorating the family farm throughout America, and making healthy food and opportunities in the industry available to a broader base of people, from the city to our rural communities, and from the wealthy to the less fortunate.”
How we’re able to “B The Change” on a daily basis.
“We practice some of the most innovative and sustainable crop production practices by conserving up to 90% less water with 3-5 times the crop for our community. Our B Corp also employs combat veterans and offers wages above the industry average. This creates a working environment centered around the employee. Archi’s Acres is an enjoyable place to work, and you can improve your performance and overall productivity. Ultimately, this is good for the business.”
If you want to become a B Corp…
“Do you just talk the talk, or do you also walk the walk? Being a B Corp provides us a way with describing to our customers that we walk the walk. ”
The bright future of B Corps.
“We hope the B Corp movement continues to grow, and that consumers become more aware of its branding, and that the challenges we face as a community are opportunities that can be addressed while generating sustained value and creating jobs.”
About Karen and Colin Archipley, Co-Founders, Archi’s Acres
Karen Archipley is the Co-Founder of Archi’s Acres and Archi’s Institute for Sustainable Agriculture (AISA). Karen brings her marketing savvy and entrepreneurial spirit in co-creating AISA program. This program is now in partnership with Cal Poly Pomona. Karen and Colin have spearheaded Organic Agriculture for transitioning military as well as veterans and civilians. Active duty military can take the AISA program while still serving, so as they separate they can transition into organic sustainable agriculture as a career. Karen spearheads all marketing and branding for Archi’s Acres and AISA. Karen supplies marketing strategies for entrepreneurial development and recognition for AISA alumni within the agriculture community to include obtaining preferred pricing, employment opportunities, and troubleshooting.
Colin Archipley, a veteran Marine Sergeant, is the Co-Founder and CEO of Archi’s Acres, along with his wife Karen. He and his wife Karen also founded the nation’s first sustainable hydro-organic farm training program as a way to transition active duty and offer opportunities for veterans in the fast growing organic agriculture industry. Colin co-created the program curriculum and integrated all aspects of training and job placement services. The results have been the establishment of a recognized and successful pilot project as the basis for replication and expansion.