This time a year ago, I was a nervous wreck. All the fears and anxiety of putting myself and our story out there for the world to see. It’s quite intimidating. The thought of strangers judging you for simply being yourself and living your life the best way you know how. Yet here I am a year later with no regrets.
Sure, there are times I feel a bit overwhelmed by social media warriors and a few mean comments but largely, it has been an extremely positive and rewarding experience. I have been overwhelmed by the support given by family, friends, and new customers.
I’m overjoyed with all the new friends I’ve made the last year at various markets I’ve been to, whether it be other vendors or customers. I get to experience the joy when a repeat customer seeks me out of the crowd to purchase beef. I get to see new followers interact and share our story on social media.
This beef business has given me the confidence to go after so many things in life. It’s been extremely fulfilling and has me questioning what else I can do to grow and learn. I haven’t always sought out new opportunities and now I find myself constantly looking for more.
As somebody who has grown up in rural Missouri, but necessarily “in ag”, it can be intimidating to speak about it. I’ve spent the last 14 years watching, observing, asking questions, and just learning all I can about the farm and ranch community. And I’ve come to learn that it takes each and every person involved to create a positive experience. I’ve also learned that what works for our operation and our family, does not work for somebody else.
Over the last year, I have tweaked and pivoted my initial plan to meet the demands for my customers. Right now, we are selling beef direct within a roughly two hour radius from home. This means that I am personally making beef deliveries, as we do not have a public facing business set up (yet).
Farmer’s Markets have also provided me with an opportunity to get my name out there and meet new people. I have been able to take pre-orders through my website to help fill specific orders using a debit or credit card when cash is the only available option on the day of the market.
I say all of this to encourage anybody who feels called to do something to just go for it. While there is fear in the unknown, isn’t there more fear in remaining the same? I truly believe the only way to keep farming and ranching alive and well is for us to share our stories. Farming, ranching and agriculture is an essential part of our daily lives. The entire world needs food, fuel and fiber.
What does the next year look like?
While we plan to continue to sell quarters, halves, and whole beef shares, we also hope to expand our direct beef sales. Subscription boxes are now available, giving you fresh Prime Angus beef on a monthly basis. We also look to ship beef directly to your door in 2024! All of our beef is USDA inspected and labeled, allowing us to cross state lines. This is crazy exciting and intimidating at the same time, as this means we will need to keep more fresh beef on hand to meet the demand.
Personally I am working on some other huge things that I hope to share into 2024. One being an expansion of my own personal experience and what I feel to be expertise. I hope to be able to spread what I have learned in the digital marketing world, specifically in agriculture with others who want to learn how to launch a brand. I have put my whole heart into building Heartland Beef Co. and what I want to see it become. It has enriched my life in so many ways and hope to give others that skillset and passion. Don’t worry, there will be so much more to this in the next year!
Website improvements are on their way! While I love my website and it is clearly a labor of love, I have recognized there are some improvements I can make. I want it to be a user friendly experience and better, you the customer, to the online shop. More farm and ranch merch is also to be added for all you farm wives out there!
All of this has been made possible by you! My loyal readers, subscribers and customers! There isn’t enough thanks in the world for all the support you have given me! I’m just a ranch wife with a huge dream and there is no stopping the plans I have set for the future. If God puts something on your heart, don’t be afraid to answer the call. Again, thank you and stay tuned for an exciting year 2 for Heartland Beef Co.