Farm Update PLUS Really Exciting News
Good Morning and hello from the farm,
We continue to have so many NEW folks (>3000 per month) visiting our website only to find we are sold out! While we cannot meet the needs of everyone, we see many missed opportunities among this group.
Processing of beef & pork continues to be the bottleneck for our farm. The COVID-19 issue has only made the situation worse!
For the past 6-8 weeks I have encouraged Homestead Packing to add a second shift to process beef. This would let them basically double their capacity. When I recently picked up the ground beef Ethan told me they had worked out "how" to make this happen. They needed another butcher, helpers, and an expensive saw. Wednesday, when I delivered beef Ethan told me his current butcher had given notice.
Times like this you have to use all available resources! So, I offered to call Commissioner Gipson on my drive home to see what he might could do to help. We had a really good conversation and as always he was glad to help.
Additionally, he gave me a heads up about his press release for Thursday. Maybe you watched the press conference on his Facebook page or heard about it in the media.
His announcement is Really Exciting News for Farmers, Processors, and the citizens of Mississippi. Basically, there are three initiatives -
1) temporary regulation change to allow farms to sell beef & pork processed by Custom Processors in unlimited shares vs. four shares as the regulation states;
2) develop a web portal for farms to list their products available for sale to the public. Many people ask me where they can find local vegetables - well, this may help you. The address is www.msfarmarketplace.com ;
3) Expand local small business beef, pork, and chicken processing capability in Mississippi by making money from the Land, Water, Timber Board available to existing and or new processing plants.
These initiatives will go a long way to alleviate the bottlenecks we have getting our beef & pork processed and into consumers' homes.
I am very encouraged and grateful about what Commissioner Gipson is doing! Those who have been with our farm for a long time know that I have been "raising the red flag" on the lack of processing since before 2015! In 2016, a report was issued that stated Mississippi IMPORTS $8.5 billion in food per year. There is a lot of opportunity for many farms, as well as all the inputs needed from other businesses, to help grow Mississippi's agriculture economy.
That same year (2016) Mississippi's Ag economy value was $7.35 billion vs. North Carolina (a state with the same number of square miles) Ag value of $85 billion. North Carolina has a strong small direct market farm economy (with ample processing plants) that grow food that feeds people. In 2019, NC's Ag value increased to $90 billion vs. MS Ag value of $7.65. That is 11.75 times more!
You may remember last week I wrote about "build it and they will come" from Field of Dreams. With these new initiatives Mississippi farmers and consumers have an opportunity to build and enjoy a brighter future.
REMINDER - please reference the announcement bar at the top of our homepage for the most up-to-date information about our RESTOCK dates! Inventory is typically added late afternoon to early evening. The information is available 24/7 so there is no need to check every day or multiple times per day. We hope you find this helpful.
Martha A. recently left this ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Google Review:
"The eggs are AMAZING!!! I've been buying those expensive, fancy eggs in the grocery store, but these gorgeous eggs are so far above those!! The shells are thicker, the yolks have that deep orange color, and the whole egg is a good deal thicker than store eggs, including the expensive, fancy ones. Thank you, Ben!!"