| Published: December 19, 2023

Farmer on the Rise, Ian Antons

Ian Antons, 2023 Farmers on the Rise Award Recipient

Farm Credit awarded a total of $100,000 to beginning farmers through the Farmers on the Rise Award Program on December 7, 2023. Ian Antons of Frederick County, VA is one of ten recipients.

Ian began farming in 2019, and owns 15 acres where he produces American heirloom hops for local breweries using no-till farming practices. Ian oversees all aspects of the farm's management, from cultivation to business development. His experiences as a combat veteran and a professional firefighter have contributed to a work ethic and resolve that have proven to be useful in agriculture. Through extensive research and networking, as well as trial and error, Ian has learned the intricacies of hop cultivation, how to manage soil health, prevent pest and disease issues, and select varietals. Ian Antons

His short-term goals are to increase hop cone yield through farming technique optimization, nutrient management, and enhanced plant health. He also aims to expand his partnerships with nearby breweries with a goal of serving a broader regional market and to offer consumer education through workshops and tours. Long term, Ian plans to expand the farm's footprint and venture into value-added products such as on-site hop palletization, which would reduce reliance on other regional farms. He is seeking funds to purchase a hop harvesting machine, which would allow him to move away from manually harvesting his crop, thereby greatly increasing efficiency and optimizing labor resources.

You can meet all of the 2023 award winners here, and learn more about their farming experience on our blog!

Please enter a valid password to access this page:

Wrong password. Try again!
Back to News