The Carts and Tools Story
Carts and Tools is an Oregon based start-up design and manufacturing company located in Corvallis. Setting up shop in the heart of the Willamette Valley, Carts and Tools is smack in the middle of a local, sustainable and organic movement with deep roots.
We’re fortunate to have some of our wonderful customers; the small farmers and growers outside our doors all summer since we have the Corvallis Farmers Market right here on 1st Street. Plus there is a great park and the Willamette River. During the summer months, on Wednesdays and Fridays the street is filled with local, sustainable and organic fruit and product for sale and every day there are some wonderful places for great food, drink and music. We love being here.
“When tillage begins, other arts follow. The farmers, therefore, are the founders of human civilization.
We believe by providing smaller farmers and growers with tools created especially for them; they can plant, grow and sell more products, be more profitable and achieve their life goal of making a good living through small scale farming. We believe in fine craftsmanship, professional quality materials, proven ergonomics and just the right amount of technology to make our products just work.
The small farmer has been vastly overlooked when it comes to the availability of tools that can enable then to profitably grow fresh, local and sustainable food for all of us. Carts and Tools mission is to change that.
The Carts and Tools Team
Founder & Chief Innovator
Carts and Tools has existed in Michael McGowen’s mind and garden for several years. Previously having successfully created manufacturing businesses in the technology sector; guiding them from startup to IPO to acquisition, Michael turned his talents to sustainably raising table crops both in New Mexico and now in Oregon.
A lifelong entrepreneur and backyard farmer, developing small farming implements that solve the problems for a market gardener has been his passion. By founding Carts and Tools Michael brings his knowledge, passion, and skills to provide solutions to the under-served and growing sector of sustainable and local agriculture. For the past 3 years Michael has co-directed the Community Table at the Corvallis Farmers Market.
Business Development & Marketing
Brad brings his management and businesses development background to Carts and Tools spanning from Fortune 500 companies including Macy’s, Target and Citibank to successful, entrepreneurial pre-IPO start-ups including IvyExec.com.
Born and raised in the Willamette Valley in nearby Harrisburg, surrounded by farmers, Brad is a committed advocate of sustainable living, small farmers, local food and organic practices. When he isn’t working on Carts and Tools, Brad can be found finding ways to keep every imaginable pest out of his garden.
Cart and Tools is a team effort and we wouldn’t be here without help
- Amy Dasso, Graphic Designer
- Donna McMaster, Web Developer
- Bogdan Gavrilovic, Web Developer
- David Bassett, Photographer
- Rebecca Barnhart, Photographer
- Karissa Moore, Student, Oregon State University
- Nicole Bunde, Student, Oregon State University
- Tyler Hansen, Student, Oregon State University
Tillie Youth Project
At Carts and Tools, we believe that a strong connection between our youth, our food and our land is the best way to make our communities stronger. Whether those communities are small and rural or large and urban, teaching youth about a sustainable approach to life and food is a way to make a major impact on everyone’s lives. Fortunately we are not alone and hundreds of volunteer organizations exist today for this very cause.
We support these volunteer groups in the hopes to build stronger citizens, engaged communities and easy access to locally grown food. Through empowerment, we can change how our food comes to our table and make a entire new generation aware that food is not to be taken for granted and doesn’t just come from the supermarket.
Carts and Tools is committed to helping raise the awareness of programs that engage and educate youth through agriculture programs, urban gardening, greenhouses and selling local produce. There is nothing more we value than the feeling that a new young farmer/gardener gets raising their first carrot (other than the taste of that carrot).