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Our Approach


North Star & Vision

Leaving the world better than we found it by building farms, families and a future we’re proud of

“My four kids serve as a constant reminder as to why Gold Leaf must be so focused on a better, more sustainable future.”

Jack McCarthy
Co-Founder & CEO

Our Values

Act Like Owners

What We Mean

To be a part of the Gold Leaf family, one must think and act as if they own the farm—always striving for better results—because they do

How We Act

We grant equity to every team member. We share responsibility when things go wrong and share credit when we get big wins

Living our Values Example

Jerry, our Senior Foreman on the ~4,000-acre Kingman, Arizona, pistachio ranch, has been a part of three major development phases of the farm and treats the farm like its all his own (and through our employee equity program, part of it is). One Saturday morning at 6:45am our CEO Jack made a surprise visit to the farm with his family on their way through town. Not familiar with the vehicle, Jerry came barreling down the road in his truck to check and see if the car had permission to be on the property... at 6:45am! "Can I help you folks?" "Jerry, it's me Jack!" Jerry puts his team and the farm ahead of himself on so many days and nights, and he truly lives with an ownership mindset. Jerry (middle) is pictured here with his son Alex (right) and Steve (left) who also work on the ranch.

Are Candid

What We Mean

Be real—open, honest and transparent. We build trust and push each other to be better through candid dialogue

How We Act

We are 100% open with each other, our partners, our vendors, and our neighbors and community. We give candid feedback to drive constant improvement

Living our Values Example

Armando joined the Gold Leaf team as Farm Manager of our Westlands farms in the fall of 2022 after spending more than 30 years managing farms for other large Ag businesses. After only two weeks on the job, he took our CEO Jack to the side during dinner at our quarterly meeting and shared his candid observations about the way the farm had been run “hey Jack, you all have built a great company but let me tell you... at my farms, we have some serious cleaning up to do.” Armando’s willingness to be extremely candid with Jack shows two things: 1) his commitment to driving excellence in farm operations even when it means tough conversations, and 2) the culture of openness and listening at Gold Leaf that starts at the top. Jack and Armando are pictured here with two of Jack’s kids playing on the farm.

Put Family First

What We Mean

Our team and their families are all part of the Gold Leaf family, and we value their commitment to Gold Leaf

How We Act

We create a differentiated employment experience in Ag. We treat each other with compassion and respect, compensate fairly, and build an environment where great people want to work

Living our Values Example

Chava, one of our longtime farm operators in the Chowchilla portfolio, had a major achievement in his family recently—the college graduation of his son Edgar. Our Farm Manager Oscar rearranged the busy spring farm preparation schedule to ensure Chava could spend this important milestone with his family and celebrate with a graduation party afterwards. Oscar also attended the grad party because at Gold Leaf we not only care about and prioritize our actual families but also our Gold Leaf family members. Chava and his family are pictured left.

Lead by Example

What We Mean

We are the change we want to see in the world

How We Act

We want to farm forever, so we take care of our people, the Earth, and the communities we live and work in—setting a positive example for our neighbors and the industry

Living our Values Example

Sawyer, one of our Asset Managers who oversees more than 5,000 acres of GLF farmland, recently developed a new way to harvest medjool dates and planned trials to test its efficacy. Rather than shipping the trial plan off to Ramon, Emilio and Daniel, our farm manager and operators there, to do the hard work of the trials on their own in the 100+ degree heat of Imperial County, CA, Sawyer traveled to the farm, took a few other office folks along to learn and help out, and together, the team executed successful date harvest trials. He led a similar effort for the first Kingman pistachio harvest this year as well (pictured left with Kingman FM Arnold). By leading by example, we drive innovation and collaboration across our farms and the broader industry. We aren’t afraid to try new things and do things differently—even if sometimes those new things won’t work... because sometimes, they will in big ways!

Our Thesis

Agriculture is core to humanity

But with suitable farmland areas shrinking, the population growing, and the majority of capital and talent focused on high-tech industries, there is a critical void to fill in the space.

Gold Leaf Farming brings together top talent, long-term capital and a modern, sustainable farming approach to capture opportunities in Ag while adding nutritious crops to the global food supply

Speciality farmland is an attractive, but undiscovered asset class. I joined Gold Leaf to build an enduring platform positioned to capitalize on this big opportunity.

Josh Guggenheim
VP of Acquisitions


Arable land and natural
resources are shrinking

The population is growing

More must be done with less

In the next 40 years, humans will need to produce more food than they did in the previous 10,000 put together.

Farmland—The Green Gold

The dynamics of a growing population and shrinking natural capital have made farmland one of the most stable stores of value over the last century.

A Generational Shift

But with the last big generation of farmers aging and most younger talent going into high-tech fields and services, a massive shift in farmland ownership is occurring.

Capturing the Opportunity

Gold Leaf Farming aims to combine traditional farming values with a modern, sustainable farming approach, top talent, and long-term capital to capture this opportunity.

Our Crops

We focus on supply-constrained crops—currently almonds and pistachios— with strong long-term demand profiles


Almonds & Pistachios are supply constrained, growing in highly specific climatic regions which are shrinking due to rising temperatures and decreasing water availability


Meanwhile, per capita demand has grown 4-5x for these crops since 1990, driven by a growing global middle class as well as healthy snacking, alternative protein, and other food trends

These dynamics drive a win-win scenario for farmers and consumers alike: providing an attractive space to further expand sustainable farming while growing nutritious, high-protein crops to add to the global food supply

Our Strategy

What We Do Differently

In a nutshell we:


Buy only the highest quality farms


Operate sustainably at scale to create value

How we do it

Buying the best farms

Over 6 years, we’ve built proprietary in-house tools and a network of experts to find and buy farms with three critical components:

1. Long-term water security

Farms that we believe will have enough water, even as challenges persist

2. Structural climate advantage

Farmland that will still be suitable for our crops in 50-100 years as temperatures rise

3. High-yield areas

High yields lower the cost of production and increase sustainability and profitability

Operating sustainably at scale to create value

Leveraging our scale, we invest in the best people, use targeted AgTech solutions, and employ regenerative farming practices to drive higher returns

The vision for operations is simple - to be results-focused operators who keep the bar high on team, process, and protection of our natural resources.

Jackie Zielke
VP of Operations


Hiring the best people.
Treating them right.


Measuring root tension.
Minimizing water use.

Ceres Imaging

Imaging orchards from the air. Analyzing tree stress.

Water Banking

Sinking excess rainwater & snowmelt. Replenishing valuable aquifers.

Organic Farming

Farming naturally for soil & bee health. Driving 80-120% price premiums.

Renewable Energy

Transitioning to sustainable energy sources. Saving diesel and electric costs.


Our modern farming approach that regenerates rather than depletes and our commitment to caring for our people complements rather than contradicts our goal of driving strong performance for our partners.

Click here to open our 2023 Impact Report

Saving water saves

Water banking” more than 750M gallons of excess water at our farm in the Westlands has saved us money for the future and provided $125k in additional revenue in 2023 alone


gallons replenished into the aquifer

Paying our people fairly attracts top-tier talent

Committing to living wage increases and providing paid healthcare for all employees and their families allows us to keep the best talent across our org with low turnover and high employee satisfaction.


average employee NPS in last 12 months

Converting to organic commands a price premium

Nearly one-third of our acres are organic, making us the largest organic almond grower in the USA. Organic almonds drive an ~80% price premium on average, increasing returns while reducing chemicals.


organic acreage

Serving our communities develops trust

Each year, Gold Leaf employees give back to the communities we farm in through service projects and sponsored community events to build trust and engagement with the communities–often underserved ones–in which we operate


hours of paid community service

Farming sustainably means farming forever

The CA Climate & Agriculture Network predicts that 20-50% of Central Valley, California, farmland will be unsuitable for farming by 2050. By understanding this and farming to regenerate natural resources, we ensure that we can farm forever.


of acreage planted with regenerating cover crops

Are you as
convinced as we are?