This article first appeared in Texas Lifestyle Magazine on July 8, 2019.
When Tanner and Catherine Klemcke first started on their search for less than 20 modest acres of land, they had no way of knowing they would end up with 57 sprawling acres and a rundown farmhouse built in 1915.
The Klemcke’s adventure began five years ago with an intriguing property listing: “Land, Free House.” The couple was instantly sold on the beautiful property just outside of Victoria, Texas, but the abandoned farmhouse was more appropriately fit for demolition than a residence. It marked the beginning of the 1915 Farm.
At the time, the couple were in their mid-twenties and filled with youthful innocence and loads of confidence. They invested the next three years into stripping the farmhouse to its studs for a full remodel to restore it to its original 1915 appearance.
The pair was all in, living in the farmhouse during the renovation while doing the majority of the work themselves. As every wood beam was attached and every door hung, an immeasurable amount of appreciation and fulfillment filled the Klemcke duo. Slowly but surely, the farmhouse began taking on its original luster. Their next journey was to restore the land for raising livestock.
“One of our first purchases was cattle because in Texas, if you have land, you have cattle. It’s just what you do,” says Tanner Klemcke.
It was around that same time that they became increasingly curious about the food system and what exactly happens to the meat between the livestock sale and the supermarket. The answer to that question convinced the Klemckes to raise and sell not only beef, but pork and chicken also directly from their farm as an alternative to supermarkets.
The 1915 Farm has been transformed. Today it is a direct-to-consumer sustainable farm selling pasture-raised chicken, heritage breed pasture-raised pork and 100% grass-fed beef with the mission to bring transparency and trust to the food consumers are eating. Every animal is raised outdoors in the pasture and lives life as nature intended—free of drugs and hormones.
The Klemckes maintain an open dialogue with their customers and have successfully put a face to their brand, creating a direct line to the farmer.