As we close up the Farm Market for the holiday weekend, we’re taking some time to reflect on the last 11 months at Homestead Creamery. It’s been a big year for us, in so many ways. We’ve been expanding rapidly in more ways than one, but more than that, we’ve been getting to know our customers more and more each day and finding ways to delight them with dairy products. Let’s take a look back on all of the great things we’re thankful for this year.
A Year of Growth for Homestead Creamery
We measure growth in plenty of ways. From growth in the skills and closeness of the Cream Team, to the hard production numbers, we’re incredibly thankful for our overall growth in the year of 2017.
As we hope you’ve seen in the news, our biggest undertaking of growth this year has been the expansion of our dairy processing facility. If you’ve come to our Farm Market, you’ve probably seen a lot of commotion going on next store at the creamery. As the Franklin News Post and Roanoke Times shared, we are tripling our production size and capabilities. We’ve been lucky to have excellent architects and developers that devised a plan that allowed us to continue production while building around the plant.
The new plant will have additional equipment, some that is already up and running, like our new glass bottle cleaner. It will also have a modern training center on the second floor to increase our productivity and build on the already fantastic skills of our Cream Team. We’re so excited to host even more tours of our plant and show our customers on how we make our milk “The Way Milk Should Taste!”
New Horizons for Home Delivery
At the beginning of this year, we were thrilled to announce that we were expanding our territory for delivering our delicious dairy products and meats, produce, and other home goods through our Home Delivery program. We are now delivering to areas in Lynchburg, in addition to our longstanding routes in Franklin County, Roanoke, Salem, and Botetourt.
The service has certainly been getting attention for the nostalgic feeling when you wake up to glass bottles of milk on your porch and we’re so thankful for the support.
Along with our expansion at our plant and in our delivery services, we wanted to widen the array of dairy products we present to our loyal customers. Not to sound cheesy, but the outpouring of excitement about our cheeses made us feel warmer and fuzzier than a Highland cattle hug.
With the introduction of monterey jack, pepper jack, cheddar cheese, and now, habanero cheddar, we’ve found new, tasty ways to use the great tasting milk from our cows.
New Ways of Reaching Customers
We’re always seeking new ways to deliver not just our products, but insights and education into the dairy industry, to our customers. Though we’ve come from humble beginnings, focusing on our local market, we’ve been expanding rapidly in our partner stores and our communications.
Prior to this year, when you tried to visit our website, you were likely redirected to our Facebook page. While we love to engage with our customers through social media, we felt we needed a better way to clearly display our wide array of products and distribution methods, as well as provide a platform to provide insight and education to our customers, regarding the food they are consuming.
Through a partnership with a local digital agency, Firefli, we were able to build the beautiful website on which you are reading this very blog post! With handy features like our “Where to Buy” search and animated “How It’s Made” page, we’ve embraced a whole new way of engaging with our customers.
Hearing from Loyal Customers
While all of these are great accomplishments and certainly things to celebrate, we’re done talking about us. Ultimately, what we are most thankful for is our incredible customers that support us. Without you, we wouldn’t be able to expand our plant. Without you, we wouldn’t have a reason to get a spiffy new website. Without your inspiration, we wouldn’t want to explore new ways of crafting great tasting dairy.
At the end of the day, when we reflect on our successful year and years past, the common factor is the support and inspiration of our customers. And for that, we are endlessly thankful!