Brinkley Farms was established in 1941 by Michaels grandparents, Abram and Mildred Brinkley. It flourished as a tobacco farm for many years. It was later passed down to their son William, (an only child), in 1973. William and his wife Dianne were already part of the farm operation at the time, but took over the full operation of the farm as Williams parents retired. His parents continued to be on hand for guidance and advice for many years. They have since passed on, but left a great legacy to continue.
William and Dianne had 3 children, Michael, Tara, and Kristen. All 3 were raised on the farm and helped with daily operations. The children are now grown and have families of their own. All 3 children still live on the farm. William and Dianne have been blessed with 5 grandchildren. Abram and Mildred would be proud to see how their family & farm has grown.
After high school, Michael continued to help run the farm operation. Michael and Myself, (Jennifer), still tobacco farmed when we first got married, along with his parents. In the late 90s tobacco became a less profitable crop than in the past and other crops started to emerge as better alternatives to keep the farm working at an optimal level. We slowly transitioned the farm from tobacco to produce. We have since added pasture-raised pork and beef.
Farming is ever changing. Brinkley Farms has grown from a tobacco farm to a flourishing produce and pastured-raised meat operation. We attend our local farmer markets year round, have a CSA program with multiple drop off locations and a home delivery option, as well as delivery to local restaurants. That doesnt even include the chickens to take care of for fresh eggs we offer or grain crops to attend to. It keeps us busy . but we are thankful for our blessings!
Michael and I have 3 children of our own, Taylor, Madison, & Hunter. They too are raised on the farm and help daily. Michael and I now handle the farm operations. Michaels parents, William and Dianne, still help us & farm while enjoying watching our kids grow up on the farm learning the same values that theirs did.
Farming is not a job, its a way of life past down from one generation to the next. Farming is bred into you from the beginning. Its not something you can learn at any school. It teaches family values, hard work, patience, and an appreciation for the land to keep it viable for generations to come.
Michaels grandparents started something some 70 years ago now that I know they never thought would have come so far. I wish they could see us today. I can hear Michaels grandma, Mildred, now. Between everyone working around the farm and all the grandkids, she would be so proud she wouldnt know what to do with herself. (She would probably make homemade biscuits and you would have to eat one every time you walked in the back door, but you never turned down a Nanny Biscuit. They were the best!)
Brinkley Farms has been blessed many times over the years. We have seen the good and the bad, but have always made it through. We are a farming family, thats what we do. We would never be happy doing anything else!
Wtach an episode of Flavor, NC! on UNC-TV featuring Brinkley Farms