There is no replacing historic agricultural land like the Hoffman Farm.
The 70-acre property is a classic Old Mission Peninsula farm, with the natural elegance and deep agricultural heritage that make the area so unique. The Conservancy has understood the value of protecting the Hoffman Farm since our earliest days, and now, we have a chance to save this extraordinary land for future generations of farmers.
One of the highest points on the peninsula, the farm offers sweeping views of rolling cherry orchards and forested hillsides against a stunning backdrop of West Grand Traverse Bay.
With striking natural features that rival those of a nature preserve, the protection of this property holds meaningful benefits for water quality and wildlife. Bordering the Old Mission Peninsula School, the Hoffman Farm includes 20 acres of hardwood forest, its own pond, numerous creeks and tributaries, and five acres of vital wetlands that provide habitat and serve the critical role of filtering water before it enters West Grand Traverse Bay.
In addition to its remarkable natural features, the property contains unique and locally important agricultural soils. Established in 1880, the farm has been managed by the same family for more than 100 years. Four generations of growers have produced cherries, apples, pumpkins, and other crops there – a tradition the Hoffman family hoped to pass on to the next generation. However, without a succession plan in place, the farm’s future was left uncertain.
After listing the farm for sale, Mrs. Hoffman launched conversations with GTRLC to protect the land with a conservation easement and sell it to neighboring farmers. The purchase of an easement would not only prevent future development on the property but would enable the land’s new owners to sustain the property’s proud agricultural tradition by making the land more affordable. Once the land is protected and the transfer is complete, the new owners of the Hoffman farmland plan to replant the property and utilize the acreage to expand their current farming operations.
GTRLC applied for funding through the USDA’s Regional Conservation Partnership Program for half of the fair market value of the easement. The landowner has agreed to a 25 percent bargain sale, and GTRLC is privately fundraising for the remaining 25 percent.