By Rachel Russell, Managing Editor
Photography provided by Tambasco Photography
Chris Baggott, co-owner of Tyner Pond Farm, was kind enough to speak with Edible Indy’s Managing Editor, Rachel Russell, about his newest venture.
Rachel: Your background is in marketing and the software industry, why the change in direction—why farming?
Chris: I really don’t see it as a gigantic transition. As an entrepreneur, I see food where technology used to be—I’d say it’s growing faster and bigger than the Internet was when I got started in that industry. Food is a multi-billion dollar industry and more than 90% of what Hoosiers eat isn’t even from this state. Food trends tell us people want local, humane meat, and they want high quality, and that’s what Tyner Pond Farm delivers.
Rachel: Why should people be interested in alternative farming?
Chris: People are interested because communities and lives are changing. People are being educated about what they eat, which means health is improving. People are learning that better food tastes better. They realize paying thirty-five cents more for a superior meal means something and there are societal benefits to buying local. And, we are employing people and that makes a difference in communities.
Rachel: What is the most surprising thing you’ve learned about food through this venture?
Chris: I’ve learned that distribution systems are not built around the local model. It’s much easier for a large food company to take one giant truckload of goods to a store and not have to make another stop on the way. I’ve also had to learn a great deal about politics, competition and lobbies.
Rachel: Where do you see Tyner Pond Farm in the future?
Chris: I can see it as a national brand one day, but the focus will still be local. I see the same thing for Husk, which is a local food startup I’ve become involved with; there’s potential to create a model with local plants all over the country run by local farmers.
Rachel: How can people get their hands on Tyner Pond Farm food?
Chris: 90% of our products are online at tynerpondfarm.com and we offer home delivery. We also have a small on farm store.
Rachel: Can people visit Tyner Pond Farm?
Chris: Yes, I encourage it as we are all about transparency and we run an open farm. There are organized tours every day. If you come and aren’t part of a tour, we just ask that you leave things the way you found them.
Want to visit Tyner Pond Farm or have more questions?
Visit: 7408 East 200 South, Greenfield