Public Speaking

Ben Hartman offers presentations and trainings about applying the lean system on farms. He has presented for MOSES, PASA, The Oregon Small Farm Conference, Sierra Harvest, ACRES USA, the National Young Farmer’s Coalition, and Piedmont Grown, among many others. Presentations can range from keynotes to one- or two-hour workshops, or all-day trainings, and are always tailored to your specific audience. He also consults directly with farmers and organizations in the U.S. and Canada.

Sample keynote title: What's Wrong With Working 35 Hours (or Less) Per Week? Using Lean Ideas to Cut Out Waste, Increase Value, and Find Balance on Your Farm.

Description: Thousands of farmers burn out from overwork after just a few seasons. While hard work is a virtue, so too is finding a healthy life-work balance. In this session, Ben Hartman, author of The Lean Farm and The Lean Farm Guide to Growing Vegetables, will explain powerful concepts from the lean system (whose origins date back to ancient Japanese rice farms) that food producers of any size and type--from ranchers to grain farmers to home gardeners--can use to produce more value with less waste and work. He will provide examples from Clay Bottom Farm, in northern Indiana, where he and his wife earn a living from 1/2 acre of cultivated land working less than 35 hours per week.

Sample workshop title #1 (for a general audience): Using the Lean System to Earn a Comfortable Living on a Farm

Sample workshop title #2: The Lean Farm: Production Tips for Market Growers

Sample workshop title #3: Lean Business Management for the Small Farm

Sample workshop title #4: Cutting-Edge Tools and Infrastructure for Starting a Lean Market Farm

To set up an author appearance please use this contact form.

Ben Hartman provided an engaging and jam packed presentation at the Piedmont Grown conference. In addition to Ben’s keynote, he offered a technical session (including gorgeous pictures) detailing specific tools and practices to help farmers be more efficient with their time and limited resources. Ben offered many labor saving recommendations that farmers, I am sure, took home to use this Spring. We would highly recommend Ben to speak in venues large and small.
— Laura Lauffer, Coordinator, Piedmont Grown 2016 Conference
Beginning farmers at the 2015 Young Farmers Conference at Stone Barns found Ben’s presentation on Lean Farming to be an exciting concept that shows valuable new ways to look at their production, including creative ways to cut waste, maximize yield and organize.
— Laurie Freyer, Coordinator, 2015 Young Farmers Conference
We were thrilled to host Ben as a speaker at our Fourth Annual Conference in 2016. He agreed to present and share his experience in several sessions, including a presentation to the full conference on Lean Farming. I found his words on using lean principles to find the right quality of life or balance between farm and family to be extremely important for the fairly young demographic of our conference. Thanks, Ben!
— Michael O'Donnell, Purdue Extension, Coordinator, 2015 Indiana Small Farm Conference

Ben's Bio:

Ben Hartman is the author of The Lean Farm, a 2016 winner of the Shingo Institute’s Prestigious Research and Professional Publication Award. He and his wife, Rachel Hershberger, own and operate Clay Bottom Farm in Goshen, Indiana, where they make their living on less than one acre growing and selling specialty produce to restaurants, at a farmers’ market, and through their CSA. Hartman was appointed to the 2017 Grist 50, a list of emerging green leaders in the United States. He keynotes conferences, conducts workshops, and offers consulting services. To learn more, see