by Luke Warner
Categories: Film/TV.


Planet Green has picked up a pitch for a reality show called Beekman Farm. The show is described by Variety as having “a modern-day ‘Green Acres’ spin about two New York City expatriates who head upstate to run a farm…and seek to develop a line of organic products for their company under the Beekman 1802 brand.”

According to Variety, Beekman Farm will “mix rural business and irreverence” in its focus on Josh Kilmer-Purcell, an ad exec, drag queen and author and his partner Brent Ridge, a doctor who has served as VP for healthy living for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia.

For the record, I read about these guys quite a while back in Vanity Fair and, to the magazine’s credit, Kilmer-Purcell’s drag queendom was not used as a selling point.  It sounds a bit from the treatment in Variety that the company, Beekman 1802, and its organic product line are being built from scratch for this TV show which is absolutely not the case. The couple have been living and working on the farm and building the brand since 2007.

According to their website, “Beekman 1802 is committed to environmental sustainability,  supporting local micro-economies, and developing debt-free business models.” Although the products are not vegan, I have a feeling that these guys are pretty right-on. They note that the farm “is dedicated to raising animals using the most comfortable and humane farming and husbandry practices possible. The Beekman goats, which provide milk for our soap and cheeses, graze freely on the pastures and range in number from fifty to over one hundred depending on the season.”

Good intentions aside at Planet Green though, seems to me like they’ve got a more flamboyant “gay goat farmer” angle in mind. “Their eccentric, extended friends and family dynamic reveals to viewers that trying to live the simple life isn’t so simple after all,” said Planet Green honcho Laura Michalchyshyn.

I still think I kind of want to watch this.

  • Brent

    Hi, Luke

    We hope you do decide to watch the show! We hope that our choices in life will inspire, entertain and educate. At least it will be something else to watch besides another version of “Real Housewives”

    Thanks for the mention

  • JC

    If it ain’t vegan it ain’t sustainable or compassionate!

    • Christine

      Totally agree, JC. You can greenwash animal agriculture all you want, but it will never ever be an ethically sound operation–however quaint/organic/”free range”, etc. your farm, it is still a place of animal torture and environmental destruction.

      Raising animals to be slaughtered for human consumption ALWAYS has an disproportionately greater environmental impact than growing plants for human consumption (in terms of air and water pollution, deforestation and use of resources) and of course it is simply immoral to kill animals for food when humans thrive optimally on a vegan diet. Read the China Study if you haven’t already.

      I will not be watching the hypocrites on Beekman Farm. Why don’t you get into an actually green/sustainable operation by switching to a vegan farm!

  • Joe

    RE:If it ain’t vegan it ain’t sustainable or compassionate

    We still have to be rational.

    Over the past year or so I’ve gone from regular meat eater to vegetarian to about 90% vegan. I feel great, and I’m happy with the decision I’ve made. That being said, I will definitely support farms that seek to offer more humane practices than what many farms employ today when it comes to animals. If we don’t support those folks, then they will disappear – and all we’ll have left are huge corporate machines that pump out “product” like they pump out cars.

    I’m not OK with that. And I think we should all be rational in this debate and realize that you can’t flip a switch and make huge changes overnight. It’s a long, difficult process. But change will happen if you approach it sensibly.

    • Brent

      Hi, JC and Joe

      This is a very interesting and emotional debate. At Beekman, we are not vegetarians; however, we do make an earnest effort to eat only the meat that we have raised ourselves on our own farm. We are certain that there will be opposition to even this practice, and we respect both sides of the debate.

      Our new life on the farm is a constant learning experience. Who knows? Perhaps this time next year we WILL be vegan!