Mother-Daughter Farming Business Flourishing
The Young Female Farmers --in their fifth year of business-- will set up shop at the Grand Opening of the Oconee Farmers Market on Saturday.
Most teenagers are just beginning to enter the workforce through part-time jobs around the age of sixteen. But Cheyenne (19), Camaryn (16) and Trae (14) Candelario of Bishop are sisters who have been running a successful business alongside their mother, Margo, for the last five years.
They are the Young Female Farmers.
"Raising teenagers is tough with all of the outside distractions," Margo Candelario said. "I wanted to teach the girls how to live off the land; the importance of eating healthy and taking care of themselves."
The family resides on a small plot of land with the girls' grandmother. There's a lake, fish, and horses. They even make their own compost for the garden.
A big part of the business is making homemade baked goods using recipes handed down from Candelario's father, godmother, and family friends.
"I taught the girls how to bake and they took it from there," she said.
Each girl has her own specialty. Camaryn makes a Coca-Cola chocolate cake, Cheyenne loves to bake muffins , such as the popular banana nut coffee flavor, and Trae focuses on making old-fashioned buttermilk pound cake, Candelario said.
"We know what goes into [our products]," she added. "It's all healthy."
Watching her daughters mature and seeing their camaraderie unfold as they work together to produce products that are popular is the best part, Candelario said.
"The girls learn to market goods, work with the public, have a smile on their faces, and pay taxes...all aspects of running a business," she said.
Other products that the Young Female Farmers sell at their booth include lattice top apple pies, zucchini bread, sugarless bran muffins (on select weeks) and sweet potato pies (in the fall). During the growing season, the women stock their table with fresh produce, too.
Candelario said she and the girls enjoy coming to the Oconee Farmers Market because of the support of locals.
"The girls know that they have an important place in community," she said.
The season usually starts for the Young Female Farmers on Mother's Day weekend, and they will sell for 26 weeks. But they also bake for special events year-round.
"We're happy to do it another year," Candelario said.
Here is a list of items other vendors will have at the Oconee Farmers Market this Saturday:
- Shiitake mushrooms
- Grassfed Senepol beef
- Homemade pies (chocolate chess, strawberry-rhubarb, blueberry, and pecan)
- Whoopie pies
- Strawberry and mulberry jam
- Live garden plants
- Dog biscuits
- Decorated gourds
- Recycled jewelry
- Boiled and fried peanuts
- Pickles on a stick
Saturday is the Grand Opening of the Oconee Farmers Market, and the Red Oak Southern String Band is slated to perform their style of "fresh-from-the-farm folk and bluegrass music," co-organizer Jamie Swedberg wrote in an email.
Oconee Patch's Gardening in Oconee columnist Steve Pettis is a member of the band.