Actually I did spend Saturday cropping photos for future scrapbook pages but the previous Saturday I was attending CROPP (Coulee Region of Organic Produce Pool) now known as Organic Valley (OV) which held their annual investors’s meeting for the first time without its founder, George Seamon. Seamon’s missing face was not the only change as this year it was held at Stoney Creek Inn rather than near/at one of Organic Valley’s headquarters.
We were assured CROPP’s mission has remained the same ” to save farm families today and for the future.” The focus is still the Organic Valley product consisting of integrity, the cooperative, its independence, sustainability and a stable price. When markets change, they will be investigated, discussed and fixed by maximizing the value and optimizing the supply chain by changing its structure, process and systems accordingly.
Following this strategy led to the decision to remove 50 positions within Organic Valley. OV and their farmers are hurting from not only the floods, but milk sales are down as are their prices. OV has diversified even more in their distribution of organic products and creating store brands.
A new face was also brought in to market ULTRA, a new product which was part of the table’s centerpiece sitting in a mini ice trough. ULTRA will be on dairy cold case shelves in certain markets this month boasting filtrated, protein, less sugar, added value, nothing artificial nor use of toxic products. We also become taste testers as we could sample our table’s centerpiece. Let me promote the chocolate ULTRA as it was really rich and good.
Besides hearing about marketing and distribution, we heard the numbers, seeing last year’s financial report and about the Farm Family of the year. Good questions and lunch followed the presentations.
Lunch one of my favorite parts was served family style and was deliciously local and organic as always. It’s always a treat to see and visit with friends we only get to see once a year.