More Oklahomans Are Buying From Farmers During Coronavirus Pandemic

Thursday, May 14th 2020, 9:54 pm
By: Kristen Weaver

Oklahoma's farmers and ranchers said they are seeing a resurgence in people buying directly from them instead of from grocery stores.

They said it’s partly because of concerns over national food supply chains.

The owners here at Grassroots Ranch said they're doing what they've always done: feeding their communities but said now there's a whole new appreciation and demand.

Out on the hundreds of acres of tall grass and yellow flowers speckling the Porter farm, cows roam free, chicks and chickens wander and lay eggs as they please.

Owner Maria Rose said practically overnight, things changed at their farm, with new customers were ordering left and right.

"It was absolutely out of nowhere, the growth that we've seen," Rose said.

Rose said they've added lots of new pantry staples during the pandemic, and said their products like eggs, chickens, pork and beef have been a hit.

"We've seen about 300 to 500 percent growth."

Rose said panic from consumers after seeing empty shelves, and issues with COVID-19 plaguing meat processing plants has created somewhat of a resurgence in farm to table.

"We were doing delivery 2 days a week and now we're doing 6 delivery days a week," she said. "That's been really great. We've seen a need and are filling it."

The delivery model has been successful for many other Oklahoma ranches, like Tallgrass Heritage which delivers grass-fed beef to people across Green Country.

Ranch owners from Diamond 4 Cattle Co. in Rogers County tell us they've also seen exponential growth in beef sales and are glad people are finally catching on to resources available locally.

"We're banning together as farmers to call out the broken system people have relied on and said we're here and have always been here," Rose said.