Results from our survey about new store hours/days part 2

Today we continue to address the awesome write in responses from our customers on our survey.

I’m still part of a CSA that’s winding down, but supplies most of my meats right now.

I don’t try to compete with other farmers. I don’t want to take their customers. We have lots of customers who say, “I’m so glad I found you, we were driving to (insert far away place here) and you are only minutes from us.” That customer, I’m glad to help. But stealing other farmers customers isn’t why we get up every day. I think a rising tide floats all boats and we’ll be better off helping each other so I’m perfectly happy for this customer and their CSA. And I thank them for what they do buy here. When the CSA shuts down, we’re happy to help them. When the CSA starts back up, we’ll be glad to see them when we can.

Though it is not really too far to drive to your store, there is nothing else out there that I would go to. So your store is out of the way for me.

I have this same issue with other people I do business with. We can’t do much about it from our end, other than to make our destination as pleasant as possible. In a few years, we’ll be inside of 540 so maybe the drive will be easier, and the destination will include other things.

More grocery stores are now selling grass fed beef; it seems to be a little cheaper. I do prefer to buy directly from you though. Just can’t do that all the time. Plus, I eat mainly vegetarian, so I don’t need that much meat.

This was an interesting quote for two different reasons. We had several vegetarians who answered, and many more who shop here. When we first started the farm, we were worried the vegetarians would boycott us since we sold meat. Instead we’ve found them to be wonderful customers. It’s been eye opening for us, especially when our peers told us we were crazy to let a bunch of people off the street onto our farm. That PETA would be here protesting. We’ve found the opposite is true.

The other point is that grocery stores are carrying more grass fed beef. That is true. Lowes has built their brand on local food these last few years. Wal-Mart, the king of running local businesses out of business, now features grass fed beef in their store. However, there is a caveat. Grass fed doesn’t actually mean anything. It is not a defined term by the USDA or anyone else with regulatory authority. What they don’t tell you when they say grass fed, is they mean grain supplemented grass fed and/or grain finished.

So they say grass fed and you think. 

But what they mean is.

Is the grass fed beef better than pure feedlot beef? Sure, probably. Is it what you think it is? No. Is it grass finished beef, like we sell? No. Trust me, we are looking at offering another farmers grass fed, grain finished beef ourselves as a lower cost option for our customers. Not everyone wants grass finished beef due to cost, or due to flavor and tenderness. I’m fine with it because I’m trying to please my customers and save them the trip to the grocery store. At least I will know what grain the cow had, how long they had it, and how much grass went along with it. At Wal-Mart, you have no idea.

We are keeping our cows on 100% grass though because that’s what my family eats. If you know what you are buying, then buy away. Just don’t be fooled by a pretty label.

Rush hour on old stage road is awful!

Now we have a comment that gets to the heart of our question. We are open 2pm – 6pm. That was an idea for a time that Lucy originally proposed. It worked well for her so she could still get dinner on the table and gave people a chance to get here after work. But this commenter is right. Traffic is awful, and it’s only getting worse. We’ll talk about this more in a later question we asked.

In part 3, we will continue to address the write in responses from our customers.

 

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Dan is a dad, a husband, a business owner, a pilot, a sailor, a scuba diver, a machinist, a gunsmith, a welder, a woodworker, a day laborer, a teacher, a mentor and a writer. The short form of all the previous is he's a farmer.

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