Last year, people bought garden seeds by the packet.
This year, they’re buying by the pound, and adding a few chickens to the order.
Business is booming at the local farm supply store.
“We’re selling lots of seeds. We’re selling lots of chicks. We’re selling feed like crazy,” said Hannah McGlone, owner of Kee’s Farm Service near Grayson.
The Kee’s Farm Service team is responding to the current situation by providing curb service, McGlone explained.
|Hannah McGlone kept her distance while discussing different types of green beans (there are four, she said) with a customer. Volunteer Half-Runners are the most popular in this area, she said, noting Honey Select Corn is also a local favorite.|
“We’re just being really cautious with everybody’s health,” she said.
There are definite trends with sales in the past few days, McGlone observed.
“I’m having people buy pounds and pounds (of seeds) at a time. They are expanding and buying extra,” she said.
“I’ve had new people come in and say ‘Help me! I’ve never done this before.”
The curb service, she said, has been appreciated by customers, even though they’ve also observed people pull in and then leave because they didn’t seem to think the place was open.
“One lady said she felt like she was living in Mayberry with Sheriff Andy Griffith because of the curb service,” McGlone said with a smile.
While she is happy to see their business is having a boom, McGlone said she is heartbroken for other small business owners who are facing the opposite situation. She also worries about the long-term effects of the ongoing social distancing.
“I feel guilty,” she said, rattling off a list of first names of local shopkeepers whose concerns she’s heard about.
“I’m also worried all this will train people to order online and move away from small businesses.”
At the loading dock, one customer and staff from Kee’s Farm Service seemed relatively unworried as they loaded supplies into the bed of a pickup truck.
“See ya Ralph,” the customer said as they parted ways.
Story and Photos by TIM PRESTON