Your time is important and I value it greatly, so I will tell you upfront that this is a thank you letter, an announcement about some exciting changes we’re making at MilkRun and an invitation to subscribe to our new weekly delivery program.
I’ve broken things out into sections below so you can read and digest at will depending on your interest, your day or the slack messages sailing across your screen.
Let’s start with the headlines:
You’re invited to try the new MilkRun subscription
As I said above, we’ve moved to a recurring subscription model to deliver the best local produce, pasture-raised meat, eggs, milk and freshly baked bread, sourced directly from small local farms to your door every week. You can read more about the “why” behind that decision below, but I know you’re going to love it.
Friday, October 15th will be the last day to order from our marketplace.
Transitioning to a subscription-only model means we are closing our online marketplace. I know this will be an adjustment for folks who have been buying local goods through this site, however, you can still subscribe to MilkRun to get your farm-fresh grocery staples delivered, then support your favorite grocers by purchasing your other local favorites from them!
Now, if you’re still with me, I also want to use this opportunity to share with you some lessons from our journey that inspired these changes...
As you may know, the MilkRun mission started small. I launched the company in 2018 alongside Jimmy Serlin, now founder of Revel Meat Co., due to the challenging position we were in as two farmers trying to make a living in Canby, Oregon.
Our team started small, too. By the beginning of 2020, MilkRun was made up of just four (slightly crazy) people. When Jimmy opted to go full time and take over a USDA-certified small processing facility that served 200 ranchers, I began to understand more deeply the issues facing our local food systems and more importantly the critical time we are all in.
There is no question in my mind that localizing our food system and ensuring the future of our nation’s small and mid-sized farmers is our generation’s responsibility.
It is the root of the root.
And we can and we are all actively building a better future. It starts small, it’s about what we value and making the choice every day to believe in the power of those values.
In many ways, our current system was designed to make it about as hard as possible to buy food directly from small farmers, and for those farmers to make a good living. Those days are slowly but surely fading, though, thanks to awareness, technology, the resilience of our producers, and, of course, wonderful folks like you, who care and who are willing to find an easier way of doing the hard thing. We’re truly proud to be a part of turning this tide and humbled that you’re standing alongside us.
Admittedly, 2020 broke the wheel for MilkRun in countless ways. Our team of four grew to nearly 50. We opened two new markets. We learned by getting lost, by trying and failing, by facing challenges and by celebrating small wins. We learned so much about who we are as a company and who we want to be for you and for the farmers we’re proud to call partners as we move forward together.
Through it all, I can say now with more confidence than ever that while we still have much to learn about what it takes to change a system from the inside, we are making progress, and remain committed to doing whatever it takes to continue to serve you and your family great food from great farmers as we all work together to forge a path toward a more sustainable future.
For us, that means we don’t want to compete with Instacart, Amazon or the Fred Meyer Click-list. When we tried being on-demand, anything you want, always new, always adding, always changing shopping site, we started losing sight of what this was all about in the first place: Helping farmers make a great living by making it easy for you to access the incredible food they work so hard to produce.
That’s why we’ve changed from being an online grocery marketplace to a subscription service that delivers the best local produce, pasture-raised meat, eggs, milk and freshly baked bread, sourced directly from small local farms to your door every week.
We made this decision because you asked for it, because our producers rely on consistency from their partners, and because we are damn proud of who we are and even more proud that people like you continue to choose us.
So, from each and every one of our small but mighty team, thank you for your loyalty to us and to local farmers. Without you, there is no us, and we that to heart here at MilkRun — almost as much as the quality of our eggs.