COVID-19 : Buying Local

*Featured Image: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html ; March 29, 2020 11:42 AM

Wow. I’m not sure about you, but the last week has been very chaotic. But not to fret, Schoentrup Farms has you covered!! If you’re new here, I am Olivia Schoentrup of Schoentrup Farms. We raise beef, pork, and chicken on pasture and sell the meat directly to consumers, just like you. We use an organic processor that does not use harsh chemical rinses or preservatives like MSG’s and Nitrates. I wrote a blog post going to into more detail here that you are welcome to check out. We also demand a very high quality product and work hard to give you just that.

 

But we aren’t the only farmers in the world. Our goal is to show the world that buying local is not only good for your local economy but also good for your health. Especially with the chaos we are seeing today!

 

People think that buying local means buying more expensive, buying more “natural”, or buying more “feel good” stuff.

 

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Well, kind of. Let me tell you a little story…

 

I grew up on a 300 acre family farm raising beef, pork, corn, and soybeans. I showed in 4H. I worked hard for my animals, even when I barely weighed more than a 50 pound feed bag. Farming is something you live for, not something you do because it sounds cool or could make money (and to be honest, majority of the time, it doesn’t make money, like at all…). When I was in college my dad decided to start marketing his farm himself. You see, traditionally, the farmer raises the animals, sends them to the packers (large butcher companies), and receives a certain amount of money depending on how much they weigh.

 

Recently, farmers, like my dad, have started marketing for themselves. They raise the animals, take the animals to a processor they know and trust, get their meat back, and sell it directly to consumers. Man, that is so much harder than just loading them on a truck and taking a check. But, it is so much more rewarding!!

 

One day, my dad had just gotten home from a farmers market. He told people how rewarding it is to grow something and see how great it turns out. He heard stories about how someone is concerned for the food they put in their bodies and want to be conscious of that. He spoke with young people and old people. He came home so proud of the money he had made and wanted to tell the family about all the new people he had met. My siblings and I listened excitedly, thinking about how cool our dad is for helping all these people!

 

Then, my little sister, she was about 5 at the time, reminded my dad about her upcoming dance recital. She started twirling around and doing some of her learned moves with the biggest smile on her face. My dad remembered they still had not paid for her outfit. He went to his cash box where the money from his sales that day were being held, and got the money out for her outfit.

 

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Click here to read about our One Large Family Operation

You see, when you buy local, it may seem a little more expensive than going to the super center, but you aren’t helping a CEO buy a third Maserati. You are helping my little sister have her dance recital outfit. Or a little boy play baseball. Maybe a 16 year old buy their first vehicle all on their own.

 

Buying local is so so much more than a trend. It should be a way of life.

 

And with today’s issues… the grocery stores are out of product and overwhelmed. Who can you trust to feed your family? Your local farmer! That is who!

 

And that is why we are here. But we cannot feed the world alone. We know bee keepers, bakers, and farmers of all types! We are here to help you!

 

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Please reach out to us with any questions about us, the farm, or buying local!

Accountability & Traceability

Accountability. Traceability.

Those can be big words… so what do they mean for Schoentrup Farms exactly??

First, if you haven’t read our post about our processor, you should check it out here. I talk about who we use to process (or harvest) our animals and why. We raise the animals from babies to maturity and ask someone else to do the dirty work, then we take the meat product back to the farm and sell it to our customers. But… can’t anyone do that?? Yes, they can.

So what makes us so special?

We have chosen our processor very carefully. We use This Old Farm to process our beef and pork. They give us the peace of mind knowing we are getting our animals back. That sounds like a very simple concept… doesn’t every process do this? Sadly, no.

To keep things efficient and moving forward, if a mistake is made on say, a pork chop for example, a different processor may take a pork chop from another animal to fulfill an order that requested a specific number of pork chops. This Old Farm will not do that!

When there is a mistake made, because lets face it, mistakes happen, we are all human, our processor will give us that cut of meat and tell us they made a mistake. Mistakes can range from a mislabel, to cutting the shoulder wrong. Once a cut is made, you can’t just sew it back and start over. Its done. We have to use what we have. This is accountability.

Processing facilities can also be quite hectic. If they are particularly busy, everyone has one job, like an assembly line. That means there count be 10 hands that touch one single piece of meat at other processing facilities. This Old Farm targets to keep those hands down to at most 5 and documents exactly who touched what. This is important because of contamination. The more hands touch something the more at risk it is for germs, and no one wants a higher risk for germs. They then keep all our meat separate from other meat until we come to pick it up. This is traceability.

What do these two words mean to you, our customers? It means we are an open book. We admit when we are wrong, we aren’t afraid to do so, and we surround ourselves with people that think similarly. But it also means that sometimes we need some patience. Our number 1 concern is that you are taken care of and to accomplish that, we may need a little extra time. But at the end of the day, you will have a wholesome product that you can trust came from our farm, raise entirely by us, and came back with the same DNA.

So there you have it. We know who, what, when, where, and how our meat is handled from the time we drop off a live animal to the time we pick up the meat frozen and packaged. And that is why we are so special!

 

*Featured image credited to This Old Farm

This Isn’t a Part-Time Job

Hello!!! If you’re new here, Schoentrup Farms is a small farm outside Shelbyville, IN. The employees consist of a husband, a wife, and a great farm dog named Hunter. We are full of many wonderful animals. Currently we have 7 laying hens, and 3 cows and 4 calves.

 

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Not only are we just starting our farm, but we also have full time jobs outside of farming. If you know anything about farming, it’s not just a hobby or a side gig. It takes time, and a whole lot of effort!! Farming is a hard job simply by itself! You don’t just feed, or plant, or harvest.

 

For Paul and Olivia, mornings start before the sun comes up. During the summer while the broilers are on farm, the older batch of meat chickens need to be moved, they need fresh feed, and fresh water. Sometimes the cows need hay and fresh water. The younger batch of meat chickens also need fresh feed and fresh water. The calves now have their own feed to help their stomach develop properly so they usually need fresh feed as well. The farm dog himself needs his breakfast as well! Then finally, the humans get to eat!

 

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During the day, we are at our day jobs. Paul is now a working for the local fire department where he works for 24 hours at a time and then is off for 48 hours. Olivia works at a bank all day but still barely gets home in time to make dinner and then help with the nightly chores.

 

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At night, we are in the barning until after dark at times, feeding and watering again, setting up fencing or preparing for the next day. By this time, the day has stretched long past 16 hours.

 

So farming isn’t a hobby or a quick fix way to get some extra cash. It’s not even simply having cows because we dream of owning our very own herd one day (but maybe that’s part of it! Ha). Farming is a second full time job that we hardly have enough time for. But at the end of the day, we love our busy lifestyle that we have personally chosen. We thoroughly enjoy taking care of all of our animals, ensuring that they are the happiest they could be.

 

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We are truly blessed to have such a wonderful farm life that only few can have these days. We share our extra responsibilities with you to show you that our products don’t just taste great products, but that they are made with tinder love and care. We don’t just sell a product, we work for our product, we believe in our product.

 

If you’re interested in learning more, feel free to browse around our website. You can order some product or just get to know us a little better! Either way, thank you for being here, we hope to see you around!

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