Emily Newborn is a fourth generation farmer from Eaton Rapids. Her family has long raised chicken, beef, and pork to sustain the family, and eventually provided meat to neighbors and friends looking for locally raised food. Taking into account her own health needs for clean meat, as well as the growing national trend of buying locally grown food, Emily decided to start Emily’s Farm, a business committed to providing meat without preservatives, antibiotics, or steroids.
The start of Emily’s Farm coincided with Emily’s participation in FFA. Now a senior in high school, Emily started building and promoting her business in 2016 after seeing a presentation about the 5 Minutes Tops program, an opportunity for mid-Michigan students to pitch business ideas to local business owners for cash prizes. Emily won the 2016 regional competition, but her 2018 efforts are taking Emily’s Farm above and beyond 5 Minutes Tops.
During the 2017-2018 school year, Emily participated in the Grand Ledge Fledge competition, placing first. She continued to the LCC regional competition and placed first again and won $250. She then participated in a LEAP (Lansing Economic Area Partnership) competition, winning the overall competition with a $1,000 prize, as well as two second place cash prizes of $300 each in best business plan and best table pitches.
Wednesday, April 18 Emily competed in a competition with the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and won an additional $1,000 prize. The MCC competition placed her on the next track to compete nationally at a competition in Rochester New York. The New York competition is set for May 3-5, and if Emily’s Farm comes out on top, she’ll be eligible to compete on the business pitch TV show, Shark Tank.
Emily’s achievements in the student business pitch competitions are no small feat. She’s prepared over 20 pages of business plan, created speeches, presentations, and booths setups with meat samples and visuals. Her competitive work was all done alongside her schoolwork and tasks as president of Eaton Rapids’ FFA chapter.
Beyond the competitions and schoolwork, Emily hopes to continue expanding the scope of Emily’s Farm. In fall of 2018 she will attend Michigan State University to major in Veterinary Medicine with a minor in Agricultural Business. Emily hopes to one day open her own USDA processing plant, grow her business, open her own veterinary clinic, and continue to promote a culture of healthier eating. Already Emily is getting offers from meat markets to regularly buy bulk of her meats.
Readers wanting to learn more about Emily’s Farm can visit the Emily’s Farm Facebook page, or follow Emily’s Farm on Instagram and Snapchat.