We’re Steven and Christine Bailey, and we're people-gatherers. That means we really miss last night’s dinner guest at the breakfast table the next morning. We believe something beautiful happens when people share meals around the table, and we're especially passionate about food that's raised sustainably without chemicals so it gives back to the soil, heals the land, and nourishes our bodies.
"Kindred" means "tribe" or "family." At Kindred Farm, our 17 acres in Santa Fe, Tennessee, we're raising produce, flowers, pastured pigs and chickens for our community and local chefs. We also share meals at long farm tables under the stars and enjoy the bounty of this beautiful land we're grateful to steward. Those who've gathered around our table have become like family to us and are a huge part of this story. We hope Kindred Farm is a place where people are fed with amazing homegrown food but also with peace, simplicity and a greater connection to the land and each other.
Steven Bailey, Co-Founder/Co-Owner/Chief Executive Farmer
Steven Bailey, a.k.a. "The Korean Farmer," was raised by a mother from the rice fields of South Korea and a father who grew up on a North Carolina tobacco farm. A chef, farmer, podcast host, menu-creator, and farm-to-table consultant, Steven has been trained by his taste buds and unique cultural heritage rooted in food and farming. Steven attended Baylor University in Waco, TX, where he began cooking and baking and was probably the only guy in his fraternity to own a Kitchen Aid Mixer. Right out of college and living in Dallas, Steven started a missions travel company called 963 Missions and a fair-wage coffee company before founding Urban Acres, an organic produce co-op, market, and urban farm, in 2009. Since moving to Tennessee with his family in 2015, he finally understands what his wife, Christine, has been saying all these years - it's a place like no other.
Christine Bailey, Co-Founder/Co-Owner/Chief Marketing Farmer
Christine grew up an Italian-American Jersey girl before leaving the northeast for college. She attended Belmont University in Nashville and worked in the Christian music industry for several years on tour promotions, new album releases, and films. She then helped start an Africa relief non-profit called Mocha Club where she loved working for five years before she and her husband, Steven, started Urban Acres, an organic produce co-op, market, and urban farm, in Dallas in 2009. Christine has always wanted to return to Tennessee which feels like home, and she finally got her dream when she and her family moved back in 2015. Of all the things she ever thought she'd be, a farmer was never one of them. But to her surprise, she's found her true self while digging her hands into the soil of Kindred Farm. She also home educates two wild and free daughters and fosters her creativity through art, photography, writing, and chasing as many Tennessee waterfalls as possible.
JT Ward, Co-Owner/Chief Operating Farmer
JT is the man who makes the magic happen everyday! This guy can build a walk-in cooler with his pinkie, invent a greens-harvesting tool using a chainsaw, raise a barn in a few days flat, keep our rooster, Francis, in line, and make pigs smile. He's also responsible for building our sparkly-clean new produce washing station featuring a lettuce spa and salad spinners made from clothes dryers! JT was born and raised in nearby Lynchburg, TN and grew up playing outdoors, hauling hay, cutting tobacco, and gardening. He inherited his green thumb from his mom and ability to build and fix practically anything from his dad. JT entered the restaurant industry at age 17 and was Director of Operations over 9 restaurants for Ruby Tuesdays by age 26. He then went on to work for A. Marshall Family Foods (owners of Puckett's, Puckett's Boathouse, Homestead Manor, Scout's Pub) in the Nashville area and opened 6 restaurants for them in 7 years. In 2017, JT decided to leave the restaurant world and get back to doing what he really loves: being in the dirt and spending more time with his wife, Alecia, and baby girl, Finley.
Our (Steven and Christine's) journey together began in Dallas, TX, where gathering people together around the table has been part of the DNA of our marriage since 2005. But our food choices at the time still revolved around "diet" and "low-fat" with fake sweeteners galore. A short time later, we bit into an organic apple for the first time and realized we had never truly tasted an apple before. We heard about things like kale and collard greens and discovered that beets could actually be incredibly tasty and completely unlike those magenta rubbery nuggets in steak house salad bars. This led to a huge awakening of learning how to feed our bodies real, unprocessed food and we became educated on the importance of produced raised without chemicals and humanely raised pastured animals.
Shortly after seeing the documentary, Food, Inc. in 2009, we were inspired by farmer and author Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms in Virginia and began supporting the local farms movement. We began visiting local Texas farms and filling coolers in the back of our trusty Volkswagen Rabbit with raw milk, fresh-baked sourdough bread, organic berries, and sweet potatoes. Soon, other people wanted in on it! What began as 17 families quickly turned into our family business from 2009-2015: Urban Acres, an organic produce co-op that grew to over 2,300 families all over the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex. We also ran Urban Acres Farmstead, a 1/4 acre urban farm, market, and organic café where we sold local, artisan goods and hosted farm dinners and events for the community.
At the end of 2015, we sold our business, dismantled our lives of over a decade in urban Dallas and decided to move to middle Tennessee, just south of Nashville. We jammed our stuff in a POD and headed northeast down I-30 without a new job or home in sight, towards opportunity, possibility, rolling hills, and four seasons. Steven became connected to the local community when he accepted a role as Farm Director at Homestead Manor and director of the Thompson's Station Farmer's Market.
Then one day, we found land in breathtakingly beautiful Santa Fe, TN (it's pronounced “Santa Fee”), about 45 minutes south of Nashville and just off The Natchez Trace Parkway. We knew it was time to start our own farm, and this is where Kindred Farm began to take shape. The land was used for farming many generations ago in the World War II era, but nothing was growing for decades. We broke ground on the first day of spring 2017 and started from scratch.
We grow produce organically using the The Market Gardener method made famous by Jean-Martin Fortier of Les Jardins de la Grelinette, an internationally recognized 10-acre mircro-farm in Quebec, Canada. We received our USDA Organic Certification in January 2018!
The rest of our land is dedicated to pastured pigs who enjoy frolicking in the blackberry brambles and chickens who are living the high life on pasture by day and in their #henstream by night.
We've loved supporting local farmers with our voices and dollars for many years. But building our own farm is some of the most physically, emotionally challenging work we’ve ever done.
And we can’t wait to get out there again tomorrow.