There are only 30 days until Thanksgiving, so it’s our season to shine at Ferndale Market. This time of year, I can feel the pace quicken with preparation on the farm, in the market, and in our warehouse. The turkeys look good, the store is busy stocking holiday items, and the delivery trucks are humming. This is what we work toward all year.

I’m reminded of Howard Buffet’s concept of “40 chances” during our Thanksgiving season. The basic premise is that a typical crop farmer, growing an annual crop and working an average career span, will have 40 crop seasons – chances – to leave their mark. I love the way this frames the work in agriculture; instead of a continuous cycle of plant-to-harvest, it’s instead an opportunity to start anew each season. Although we turkey farmers get to cheat quite a bit (growing more than one flock each year), the Thanksgiving season is still the bookend of our year. It’s our biggest opportunity to leave a mark on food and farming, and the culmination of a year of work and planning.

The “40 chances” concept also deepens the gratitude we feel this season, for the chance we have to do work we enjoy, and to sustain independent family farms like ours with the practices my family has used for 80 years. We have this chance because customers like you see the difference in how we grow our turkeys. Few farmers have the chance to be a part of a true farm-to-table model, meeting our customers face-to-face, and we don’t take that for granted.

We look forward to seeing many of you in the coming month, whether to pick-up your turkey or to join us for TurkeyFest. And, we appreciate that many of you will seek out our Ferndale turkeys at one of our retail partners near you. Thank you for being a part of what we do, and for the chance to be a part of your Thanksgiving traditions.

Now I’d better get back to work!