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Urban Sprout Farms, Atlanta

Nuri Icorgen runs the organic and biodynamic Urban Sprouts Farm* in Atlanta, Georgia, where the focus is on putting more nutrients into the bodies of the local community. School groups, community dinners, food festivals, yoga classes, and other events bring people together in a space that's been transformed into an eco-village.

*Please note that Urban Sprout was NOP certified organic at the time of filming, but has since dropped its USDA certification.

Urban Sprout Farms, Atlanta Georgia

Nuri Icgoren: “Anything is possible. And you can start something from nothing.

You can grow something that looks like an abandoned motel into something that's thriving
with your creativity, and community outreach.

That's how you get things done. And putting good energy into a place that's leaving a lasting impression and it's doing good for the community.

My name is Nuri Icgoren and we're here at Urban Sprout Farms Atlanta, Georgia.

Nuri Icgoren Urban Sprout Farms Atlanta

Growing Crops at Urban Sprout Farms, Atlanta

Right now we're in the fall, and I'm growing kale. We're growing some onions and broccoli and a little bit of strawberries for the spring.

So in the summertime, we grow all your good summer veggies sweet potatoes, potatoes, sweet peppers, hot peppers, multiple different varieties of tomatoes.

We also have a weekly Saturday market where we offer plant starts to people. They're all certified organic. All different types of plant starts, like 40 or 50 varieties from your vegetables to your herbs to your shade perennials to flowers.

Not only do we have the Saturday market, we go to Grant Park Farmers Market, which is one of Atlanta's biggest farmers markets.

Crops growing at Urban Sprout Farms Atlanta

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Growing Community at Urban Sprout Farms, Atlanta

We have school to farm tours that we really love doing that are just so clutch in an urban environment.

You want to get your schools involved, you want to get the kids involved, and it's that vital for our future because those are our future shoppers. And those are the people that are going to be telling their parents “Hey, Mom buy me some carrots or some kale or some tomatoes from the farm!” or “Let's go get some plants!”

We also host events. In addition to documentary nights, we have gatherings like bonfires, birthday parties, and special events like food tastings and catered dinners. Things like that, yoga, festivals.

We got this property with the intent on turning it into an eco-village where there would be a community that benefits from being on-site to a farm. And so that community consists of small businesses; some residents and community organizations that can work together in a synergistic way to promote a healthier food system.

School groups and yoga classes at Urban Sprout Farms Atlanta

Local Food and Less Shipping Are Keys To Nutrient-Dense Food Shopping

But right now in our modern American diet, you know, the standard American diet, we are depleting our body of nutrients.

So, that just sparked an interest in me. Like, where can I find this food that is nutrient-dense? And we can get it from Whole Foods and places like that, yet it loses its nutrient quality and density as it gets shipped.

It's just healthier and more vital and has those nutrients and enzymes and phytonutrients fresh out of the soil and off of the plant. And you want to eat that as fast as possible.

So shopping local and eating local was just one of the missions. We need to do this, and one thing led to another, and it just kind of like bubbled into a business. Because there was such a high demand that I saw when we were growing plant starts, selling them from my backyard and then selling our excess to chefs who were like “Alright, where's the rest?”

And we're like “We don't have anymore! – We need more!”

And so there's just a high demand for local organic produce.

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Fertility Practices at Urban Sprout Farms, Atlanta

Some of the production techniques that we're using to get nutrient density are not only composting our own plant material that's on-site. We are adding local carbon and nitrogen sources from plant material that's getting wasted from restaurants to the state farmer's market.

In addition, leaves that are in the neighborhood that people bag up for us and leave on the curb.

And in addition to that, not only leaves, but there's arborist (we're in a real tree-filled city, which is great) and there's a lot of arborists that mulch a lot of leaves and chip a lot of things up and they bring it here. We compost or spread it or use it between rows because it's just the carbon sequestration that we're doing with the mulch and adding it back to the soil is the exact recipe to make high-quality soil.

We're making our own compost tea in our kind of homemade vortex brewer where it spins the water and energizes the water and adding you know love!

Community members hoe and plant crops that school groups later visit at Urban Sprout Farms Atlanta

Love and light and putting good energy into the soil and bringing good people around the plants that do good and feel good and are leavers and not takers.

You know it's just really it's all about an energy flow that happens on the farm. And even in an urban environment, it can still be productive; not just if it's productive for the soil, but productive by bringing energy from people that are interested in farming and being part of a good food movement.

It's all a continuous web of recycling nutrients and passing them into us and energy going back out into the soil.

Nuri Icgoren On What Organic Means

Being organic, it means a lot to me. Not only the fact that we can confidently say to the consumer that we're certified organic and that we don't use any chemicals, it means being creative and being natural and connected with Mother Earth.

Bottom line is when people leave here I want them to have gained value from seeing what organic farming is what community outreach and development is all from a farm. The multitude of different things that can come from a farm.

School kids proudly show their dirty hands after planting at Urban Sprout Farms Atlanta

I am super stoked for the Real Organic Project to be here helping out and filming and documenting farmers from around the country and hopefully around the world to get our voices heard. And it's just about mass adoption.

So it's coming and we appreciate your guys hard work and for watching us this far. Listen to me: follow us on UrbanSproutFarms.com, Instagram, and Facebook. Stay plugged in. Go to our YouTube channel, Urban Sprout Farms, subscribe hit the bell for notifications. We appreciate your love and support!

Vote with your fork!

Peace love and Real Food!”

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