Larry has been a farmer for over 25 years. A former mechanical engineer he spent 15 years working for Raytheon Corporation and was on the team that designed the first USB port for the Space Shuttle program. Shortly after, Larry decided to leave aerospace to work for the Lompoc Seed Company as their resident Engineer and Assistant Production Manager, where he managed several growing operations for the company. Eventually, Larry left Lompoc seed to start his own farming operation in Fresno County, where he was a contract grower for several seed companies and 10-12 ranches.
Larry first found his property in Los Osos in search of a location to grow botanical varietals. He found that the climate in Los Osos was a bit too cold for his original plantings and after the 2008 market crash dumped the ornamental horticulture business, Larry eventually decided that grains and legumes were not only more suited to the climate of Los Osos, but that growing food was more resilient to market fluctuations than flower seeds and grass seeds for backyard gardening.
Flash forward 20 years and Larry now owns and operates one of the most productive organic grain and legume operations on the West Coast. With over 300 varietals coming off his land including a perennial wheat for Patagonia Long Root Lager called “Sailish Blue”, you might say that Larry is the Grain-father of Ancient Grains in California.
In addition to being delicious, Larry’s Ancient Grains have a pretty impressive nutritional profile. High in B vitamins and Omega-3s, minerals like magnesium, potassium, and iron, these non-GMO grains also provide much needed dietary fiber, antioxidants and are an excellent source for high-quality plant protein. Because these grains are not genetically modified, they tend to be easier to digest and can even be tolerated by many people who are gluten-sensitive.
We feature a different pantry item in our Larder boxes each month, and you will often find a bag of Kandarian grains (like Quinoa, Farro, Teft, and Kamut) or legumes (like Adzuki Beans, Black-Eyed Peas and Green Lentils) in our boxes throughout the year. We love supporting this small, local farm and their inspiring mission. You can learn more about Kandarian Organic Farms and purchase all of their products here.