Even though Christmas was only three weeks ago, it feels more like months have gone by. Time is a funny thing. Days can feel like weeks or go by in minutes depending upon what you are doing. I am not sure why (It could just be me, I am weird like this), but fall seems less long ago to me than the holidays do. This past fall I had the opportunity to attend and run our booth in Platteville, Wisconsin for the Focus on Goats Conference.
First, I would like to commend our truck drivers who weekly have to drive the routes in this area. For those of you who have never been to this part of Wisconsin, it is quite a trip. There seems to be some unwritten rule that outlaws any road that goes in a straight or non-hilly direction for more than a few feet. It was like some crazy roller-coaster ride with farms peppering the hilly terrain. In my mind I could see our trucks rolling up and down these hills bringing our customers their orders like Santa Claus.
The purpose of our presence at the goat show was to build relationships with the producers and let them know we have many lab items that would be a great fit for testing their milk and animals. They learned a lot about what we do, but not as much as I learned about the goat dairy industry.
Goat folks, as I like to call them, are a different breed (really- no pun intended). They are a down to earth, hard working, not afraid to get dirty, loyal people. They take what they do very seriously, and don’t waste a lot of time on silly non- important matters. Animal care, quality milk, and a happy life are some of their cornerstones. I visited with some of the youngest attendees who had goat herds of 30 or so. They sold milk, soap, lotion, ice cream and yes, goat meat. These girls also had other animals but they were now “in the freezer” I was told.
Most all of the people there were familiar with Nelson-Jameson on one level or another. Several of the patrons looked at our catalog as though it were the JCPenney Christmas edition. One goat farmer was going to purchase the Porta Check strip reader for her husband for a present. This would be a gift that would keep on giving, as her husband was somewhat color blind and she was sick of being the one who had to read the test.
All of the people I talked with echoed a common theme. Nelson-Jameson is a great company with great people. They appreciate the products we offer, the service that goes with it and the fact that we understand how hard they work.
The next time you have a chance to roll through Southern Wisconsin, don’t forget to keep your seatbelt on, take in the beauty of the land, and remember that many of the little farms you pass help to make us the successful company we are.