Seeing as how this seems to be the week for all the states of our various unions, why not continue it with your farm. And so I would like to give a quick rundown on 2014 and what we are looking at for the upcoming year.
2014 was a big year for the farm I feel. I think that it was the year when I truly came to grips with the fact that it takes a village to feed our communities. From the very beginning the farm has always been about more than one person, and now, it seems to have grown past the work of just one farm. When I look at things now, our family farm has really grown to become a family of family farms. And it makes me smile to see this direction.
For a long time I have really disdained the notion that someone can “pull themselves up by their bootstraps.” We live in a connected world. We live in communities. Every single one of us is exposed to inspirational people, books, ideas, and mentors on a daily basis. So to fool ourselves that we live in a vacuum of self-reliance is just silly to me. And in all honesty, the richest part of the journey comes after independence. It is when we realize the strength associated with interdependence.
It is the idea that when we choose to give up a little control, we can get so much in return. This happens in our lives as well as in our businesses. By letting go of this idea that “I have to be an island,” things change. And this transition is one that I think we started this year. Our farm (your farm) does so many great things, but we do not have to do them all. We can work with partners who also do great things and it only strengthens the work we do. It is not competing with our work, but enhancing it.
With these partnerships, we have been able to gain access to quality foods, varieties, and value that we have never had before as a farm. And this comfort and understanding of how we fit in the overall local food industry came to the forefront in 2014. As I said, I could not be happier about this direction. We are really putting together (with your help) something that is not and has not been done in NM.
So how does that tie into the future of the farm? 2015 will definitely be building on this foundation that we energized last year. Right now we are trying to put together final touches on an incredible beef program that will bring you greater access to New Mexico’s highest quality beef on a year-round supply. This is looking to be a very promising addition to complement our expanding fish, pork, and chicken offerings. Look for this in the coming weeks.
Looking at my Chinese New Year calendar, 2015 looks to be the year of Quality. We have restructured our packing line in the warehouse so that fewer hands touch the product before it gets to you. But we have made bigger strides than that. We have made the connections to growers within our region who are looking to bring fresh produce into New Mexico and be able to grow their farms.
The relationship with the CSA allows them to let us know what is fresh from their fields, so we can plug it in to your orders. This ends up being a pretty seamless flow of product for you, but it is made possible by the partnerships that we have been building.
For example, the produce world is standing on its head right now. Winter freezes have caused some of the most devastation that we have seen in years. But, thankfully, our partners have sheltered you from this reality. Because you support their farms every week, we get first priority when things get tough. So as grocery stores see skyrocketing prices and limited availability, you see consistency and fresh quality produce. All made possible by our partners.
The one hurdle I want to clear this year is to add recipe kits on the web site. These would basically be kits that would have all the ingredients and a recipe to make a healthy and quick meal at your casa. Picture a fish taco dinner for 4, all you would have to do is click one button and all the ingredients would then be added to your order. I think this will be a fun way to bring excitement and convenience to your kitchen experience.
Thanks for all your support. Let’s have a great year.