and Hutchins Farm
HP LIFE Faculty Ambassador: Dr. James W. Dottin, Professor of
Community College: Middlesex Community College
Student: Jason Staci
Business Name: Hutchins Farm
Business Location: 754 Monument
Street Concord, Massachusetts 01742
A more than
seventy-five acre USDA certified organic fruit and vegetable farm.
What products and services do you currently provide?
We grow more
than 115 varieties of fruits and vegetables as of right now. We grow everything
from watermelons, lettuce, blueberries, rutabagas, and many more.
We also offer locally sourced honey, salad dressings, and
How will HP LIFE helps you grow your
Marketing was one of the greatest lessons I was taught by HP LIFE. In today’s
ever changing society, we are surrounded by social media. In our everyday lives,
we see it from your own phone, to the news and more. As a more traditional and
laid back farm, we have yet to fully explore this venue. We have a Facebook
page, however it lacks in certain aspects to attract even more new customers.
With other outlets like Twitter and Instagram, we have the potential to expand
our customer base with these easy to use and free promotional tools.
HP LIFE showed me effective ways to incorporate social media
more into the business. We could set up a Twitter and Tweet about today’s
fresh vegetables, or take an Instagram picture of the freshly harvested
lettuce. Through HP LIFE, I learned how to successfully employ Social Media Marketing
into my own business.
How is information technology
important in growing your business?
society, information technology is so important. Whether you are in farming or
retail, it is a huge part of everyday business. Even as a small farm, we use it
every day. We use it to log what produce was harvested for the day or what
chemicals were put on the crops. It helps us respond to our customers through
email and even Facebook.
What type of support do you have
on/off campus to help you start your business?
Off campus as a
farmer, there are a tremendous amount of resources available. The MA Dept. of Agriculture
is helpful in getting loans and land. There is also the BFN, the Beginning
Farmers Network. This is where new farmers, up to ten years in the business,
can find information and talk to fellow farmers about anything related to
Every two years, we also have the New England Fruit and
Vegetable convention where you can learn about new innovations in agriculture
as well as speak with fellow farmers. As a new farmer or old, you have a wealth
of resources to help you grow your business. Now, HP LIFE modules are one of those
resources that provide insight into Customer Relationship Management and Social
Media Marketing to grow our customer base.
At Middlesex Community College, students have access to the
Small Business Assistance Center. The center assists in the writing of business
plans, marketing plans, financial projections and micro loans applications.
Also, the college has formed a partnership with the Merrimack Valley Sandbox
Campus Catalyst. The Campus Catalyst is also in partnership with Northern Essex
Community College, University of Massachusetts Lowell and Merrimack College. The
Sandbox provides students with connections, support, and seed grants to launch ones
business ideas through the assistance of this regional incubator.