Our son is six years old, so it seems most of the stories I read these days involve talking mice, bears learning manners, or aliens in the elementary school. Stories are becoming common in the world of food too, as consumers want to know their food was grown in a way that aligns with their values. I tend to think that’s a good thing.
There is, however, room for manufactured or misleading stories in food branding. We recently saw a box of chicken nuggets that was labeled as both “cage free” and “hormone free.” Most people in agriculture know that no meat chickens (broilers) are kept in cages, and hormones aren’t legal in poultry farming, but while these claims are nothing more than a manufactured story, it might be enough to compel a purchase from a shopper without a farming background. There’s no doubt it’s hard for shoppers to separate fact from fiction when it comes to food.
At Ferndale Market, we’re trying to do things a little differently, and we believe we’ve got a real story to tell. As you see in this newsletter, we just completed a light remodel of our on-farm store, in part to create more space to share our story, and those of the fellow farmers and makers we source from.
Some of the final pieces are still coming into place, but it’s our hope that soon guests will leave our market with a better understanding of how we grow our turkeys, and why we’ve continued to do it this way since 1939. You’ll see pieces of our story, from turkey feeders to hatchery doors, and reclaimed tin from our range shelters, all to help you better understand the real story behind our Ferndale Market products. For those who would like to dig deeper into our story, we’ll continue to host our annual Farm Tour Day, this year on Saturday, July 14th, as a chance to see our farm and practices first-hand.
Whether you’re a regular customer of our market, or a fan of our turkey from afar, I’d like to re-invite you to visit Ferndale Market, and see what we’re up to here. After 80 years, we’ve got a story to tell.