We are Charlie & Kerissa Payne, first generation farmers and ranchers raising meat sustainably and regeneratively.
How we got started
Covey Rise Farms started as a dream to raise food for our own family. Once we got our hands in the soil, and boots deep in the dirt, we couldn't imagine our lives any other way.
- We wanted our livestock to live morally and environmentally sound lives.
- We wanted our farm to do more than feed our family, we wanted it to feed the soil and nurture the land.
- Lastly, we wanted our farm to leave a legacy that our family and community would be proud of.
The Farm you see today:
As beginning farmers we have turned a blank slate, bare dirt farm into what you see today, a Nationally recognized brand that has grown from feeding our family, to now shipping our meats and feeding families from Michigan and Washington DC to Washington State.
We traded our 14 acre lot, and newly remodeled farm house for a blank slate farm, with more acres and endless possibilities. We knew when we bought the new farm, we had couldn't afford to keep both properties. We had fixed up the old farmhouse to sell, and had hoped to take the profits from the house to build our new barn home. Charlie was hopeful that we could use his income from his job to pay for many of the farm buildouts, like our hoop barns, brooders, septic, and more.
All of our plans changed when he lost his job that spring. We knew we had to decide between our barn home and our farm, we couldn't afford to do both as new farmers. We decided the reward of feeding other families and healing our soil far outweighed the negatives of postponing our home build.
Charlie grew up in the suburbs, dreaming of farm fields and livestock as a child. He is a Virginia Tech graduate with a degree in Natural Resources Conservation, along with a minor in Agricultural Economics. He applied his conservation knowledge and work ethic to build our "grass" farm. We often joke that we are just grass farmers, working to coordinate where and when animals are supposed to be on a particular part of the farm.
While his college degree helps us work with our land, instead of against it, his fundraising experience helps us with our marketing, networking, and operations. Managing a farm isn't easy and the foundation of your success is usually dependent upon relationships. Charlie can dance the line between personal and professional with ease, working with our butchers on issues, to negotiating hay prices, and putting out farm crisis's like feed delays and livestock complications.
From his fundraising days, he knows the geography of the state better than most, and can make due with a limited budget. He has recently become heavily involved in our local farm bureau, sits on one of our farmers market boards, and is often consulted by other beginning farmers in our region.
Kerissa grew up in a small rural town in Southern, Ohio. Where she came from farming was a hobby, not a fulltime job. Kerissa wanted to understand the connection between the soil and the food she ate everyday. She began to question to ingredients and started searching for a middle ground between healthy and affordability.
In college she started to experience major health issues, that started to interfere with her quality of life. She knew healthy eating was more than eating vegetables and cutting back on sugar. After a few years of struggling she finally found a doctor who believed her, and she started on a medication to help her, in addition to her dietary changes.
Today Kerissa uses her experience with food, her hard work ethic from her upbringing and her work experience with public programs to help us tackle projects, manage our shipping, farm operations, and e-commerce each day.
The farmers you see on here, are the real farmers and ranchers of Covey Rise Farms. Together, we raise and grow everything we sell. We don't believe in cutting corners, or skipping on nutrition. We have put everything we have into the farm that you see today, and are proud to say our animals come first every time, not just when it's convenient.
Growing our Brand:
Our farm has grown through extensive hard work, long days, great customers, social media and several publications. We have been blessed to be featured on the front page of the New York Times, Edible Columbus, Columbus Monthly, along with several podcasts and local publications.
We have grown to use our social media
to help shine light on food production, hopefully allowing for consumer education and spreading awareness on where your food comes from, but most of all we hope that you are able to smile and laugh at our ups and downs as we create this farm.