The moments right before you make a cold call are special. I've come to like it; The emotions are almost addictive. It probably feels a little too good when I land a new account. Expecially when it is what we call set from the start. The goal is to get products on the shelf, but in my situation I need just the right amount of products. Yes that's right! I sell the product to them then tell them they have ordered too much, and sell them on our customer service/distribution. It's an art really. Chase, chase, chase and then pull back. Here's why!
MFJ has always been special because it's fresh. We took homemade to farmers markets. Now we're taking homemade to grocery stores. Which allows our customers to take homemade anywhere. To keep products fresh we're limiting how much inventory sits on the shelf so that it doesn't get the chance to get old. Right now the products sit on the shelf for no longer than three weeks. Then we come in, and take the products out for free.
Red is red and black is red
Right now we believe we need to sell about 7 bags per location per rotation if we continue with the current distribution system. This is feesable, but don't underestimate that number. Without a product sampling or a good location in the store this can be a challenge. Hence why were sampling like crazy right now. Soon enough these accounts will be on there own. No more baby sitting once the 11 farmers markets reopen.
The bread and butter
Gotta love market season! Our business wouldn't be where it is without our farmer market stands. I can't even begin to tell you how much great advice, and support we have received not to mention the outstanding friendships that have come from customers at market. These guys will be key to this stage of growth for MFJ. While I tune in on inventory counts at stores, and grow our brand we will be liquidating our 3 weeks old inventory rotated out of stores for free.
$6 bags of MFJ anyone? Just keep us updated on the freshness! We want you to be happy!
Testing is currently underway to add citric acid to our products potentially extending shelf life up to 2 months. We're also using a cooled room to give us some wiggle room in production. We will continue to improve on this front slowly to insure the quality stays high.
What's currently happening
MFJ is now available from Etters to Lancaster to Bel Air to Baltimore to Annapolis to Westminster to Gettysburg. MFJ starts in the New Eastern Market in York in April. With market season approaching fast we're honing in on our techniques in production we wanna be lean mean jerky making machines! There have been test batches floating around the market stands. More to come soon!
We have already almost hit our growth goals for 2017. I've been in touch with a few local grocery stores in the Harrisburg area. This will be our last big growth move until market season ends. Again with the shorter shelf life we want to grow very strong and dense to help with distribution. Q4 and Q1 of 2018 I have my sights set on DC.
See you soon,