Crust of your choice – scratch, premade
1 cup Birria goat stew meat – recipe here
1-2 cups of Birria broth – from same recipe as stew
1-2 cups - Mozzarella cheese
1 cup Cotija cheese
½ cup Onion, chopped
Makes 4 burgers
1 lb. ground goat - find it here at Cylon Rolling Acres
¾ tsp. Greek seasoning
¾ tsp. Oregano
2 tsp. Minced garlic in water
¼ cup Feta cheese (full fat)
½ tsp. Sea salt
½ cucumber chopped
8 oz. Greek yogurt, or sour cream
1 tbs. Lemon juice
½ tsp. Sea salt
1 tsp. Dried dill, or 1 tbs. fresh dill, chopped
2 ½ tsp. Minced garlic in water
Buns or flat bread – your choice
To make burgers:
To make tzatziki
Assemble your burger on your bun of choice, top with tzatziki, onion lettuce and tomato.
Garlic Rosemary Burgers
Makes 4 burgers
1 lb. ground goat - Cylon Rolling Acres ground goat
½ tsp. Rosemary, dried
½ tsp. Sea salt
½ tsp. Pepper
1 tsp. Minced garlic in water
Garlic Rosemary Aioli Ingredients
¾ cup Mayonnaise
4 tsp. Minced garlic in water
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 tsp. Fresh Rosemary, chopped
1 tbs. Lemon juice
Buns – your choice
To make burgers:
To make aioli
Assemble your burger on your bun of choice, top with aioli, lettuce and tomato.
You probably know I love listening to podcasts and audiobooks while working on the farm, doing deliveries or running errands. So I was very honored to be asked to join Cal on the Grazing Grass Podcast to talk about our grazing practices with our meat goat herd. Thank you Cal for the invite and including goats in your episode lineup. Because, yes, goats CAN graze!
If you graze livestock, I’d highly recommend checking out the Grazing Grass Podcast. Cal features a wide variety of grass farmers, including those raising beef, lamb, poultry, dairy, and goats.
Listen to the Podcast below, on Apple iTunes or visit the Grazing Grass website.
One of my favorite tools I've been using all winter is my twine knife. I use it to cut the twine off the small square bales of hay and small squares of straw for bedding. It also works well for cutting the twine off our round bales of hay in the pasture where we feed our goats over winter.
While I do carry a pocket knife, I often misplace it or end up leaving it in the house. This twine knife is bright orange and hard to misplace.
The handle makes it easy and pretty safe to use, especially with my seven-year-old. We started with one. Now I keep one in each barn and in the Gator. I've even given them for gifts, yes, that is true!
It's the Kaycee Knife. I've purchased several at Tractor Supply and also on Amazon.
Note: Products included in this blog post includes affiliate links. I only share links to products and resources that I use and like.
If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.
Marketing our farm’s products direct to consumer is very rewarding and enjoyable, but it has come with a lot of hard work, growth, learning and patience over the years. While I’ve leaned on my own experiences and training in business planning and marketing, I’ve found that it is also very valuable to seek out new opportunities to continue to grow my skills as entrepreneur, in addition to my craft as a farmer. That translates into working with mentors, taking classes, and seeking out other experiences to continue to grow as a business owner, ultimately helping strengthen my farm for the future.
One of those experiences has been being a part of the M5 Small Business Accelerator, an online entrepreneurship course led by Mary Heffernan of Five Marys Farms in Fort Jones, Calif. I started the course almost a year and a half ago. It’s been a great decision for our farm, even though we already had been selling our meat direct to our customers.
About the course:
There are three modules to the M5 Small Business Accelerator Program, think of them as mini-classes: Small Business from Scratch, Social Media from Scratch, and Selling & Shipping from Scratch. I also have access to the Beginning Business Bootcamp and the M5 Community.
As soon as I was enrolled the course, I went through all the curriculum to get familiar with the content. I ended up listing to most of the audio instruction while I was working around the farm. My main focus last year was to get our e-commerce platform and shipping program up and running. So I dove into the Selling and Shipping from Scratch module in more detail to get things set up for our farm. This module by far has been the most worthwhile component to the program. Mary shares her process and the different options she’s researched including on to set up an e-commerce site, how to actually ship, packaging options, working with carriers, and the fulfillment process. The time and money I saved figuring out how to set up this up for our farm was well worth the investment of the course. I was able to review the course materials, then explore and research the options and vendors that worked well for us. It’s helped get this part of our business off the ground and running without being stuck in the research phase of where to start.
Since we were already up and running the Small Business from Scratch module was a good review, sort of a check list of sorts, to make sure we had certain processes and items in place as a business. I can understand why Mary includes this in the coursework. In order to run your business you need to make sure you have everything in order and not missing pieces. If your farm was adding a direct market component or related business to an existing operation, I can see how this module would be very useful to make sure you have everything in place as you get started.
The third module is Social Media from Scratch. This has been a great tool and resource for us is as well in terms of looking at how we approach using social media and marketing platforms to grow our business and build relationships with our community. And I’ll be honest I went through all the coursework in this area so I had a good foundation to help point me, but my focus last year has really been to get my shipping program and e-commerce site up and off the ground. As I move forward this year will be an area where I will dive back into the content again.
I’m also a part of the M5 Community, an online community. That part of the program has been so valuable. Mary is right in there answering questions. Other students are sharing resources and experiences. It’s been a very collaborative and supportive community for growing our business.
Have questions?! Please Ask!!
This is a big investment. I get that!! If you have more questions about the M5 Small Business Accelerator program or want to see some of the work I’ve done, curriculum, etc., please feel free to ask them below in the comments or send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Enrollment closes Friday
Right now enrollment for the M5 Small Business Accelerator is open until Friday, April 30. This is the only time that Mary is opening up the course for this year. You can learn more about it here.
If you’re on the fence about joining the Accelerator Program, or just getting started with your business the Small Business Bootcamp is a great place to jump in and get started. We have access to that program as well and the curriculum is very hands on with work to get you on the ground and started in your business.
A disclaimer, the links to the course are my affiliate links, which means if you sign up through the link, I’ll receive a small commission for the referral.
If you said yes to the M5 Small Business Accelerator, here’s my advice: Who-hoo! Congrats for making a great investment in you and your business.
Start the coursework right away. Go through everything while you’re excited to grow the business side of your farm and not overwhelmed by it. Then, decide what your focus will be on for the quarter or the year and start working through that part of the coursework. It won’t do you any good to wait to find the right time to put it to use. You need to start somewhere. You’ll only get out of it what you put in. I’ve decided to make the most of my investment and it has been so worth it!
Q&A About the M5 Small Business Accellerator
Send me your questions and I’ll be glad to answer them. I’ll add them below so others who are considering the coursework can review them as well.
Did you learn about grant writing during this program? Or is that something that you have done and researched on your own?
So kind of. Mary shares some of the grant opportunities, but most I found on my own. And, really a lot of grants are regionally focused, so it makes sense to do your own digging into opportunities. But where the course has really helped with grants is focusing in on my project and how I'm going to do it and building the budget for it.
For example, with the refrigerated trailer I was able to use the M5 community to learn about what other farms are using / addressing the cold transportation challenge and then made the decision on how I was going to meet my goal.
I'm working on 2 local foods marketing grants that will help with marketing initiatives - the coursework and community have been great for planning on what I could so for this, as well as building my budget with getting leads on vendors, products, etc.
What’s been your experience with the course? Can you offer any insights? I’m concerned that I may not follow through and see results.
The course is what you put into it since it’s self-paced. But it is really good. Since it’s a big investment, I’ve decided to utilize as much from it as I could and am continuing to do so. I went through and listened to all the course modules (they’re in video or an audio file) while I worked on the farm then have gone back as I’m working on specific items. I knew if I didn’t do that to start, I may not get to everything right away. My approach is to get out as much as I can from it!
How did you get started shipping?
Okay, so this question doesn't come up when people ask me about the M5 program, but I get it all the time from other farmers. But it seems to be a good fit to include with this Q&A section. My answer is simple, the M5 Small Business community and course gave me the foundation and resources to get it off the ground and running.
Please join us for a Pop-Up Market
Cheese from Burnett Dairy Goat from Cylon Rolling Acres
Lamb from Rocky Hollow Farm
Beef from Minglewood Eats and Treats
Pork from Christenson Livestock and Farm Products and more including local honey, maple syrup and gelato!
Friday, May 7th from 3-6pm Saturday, May 8th from 9-Noon
Hosted by Minglewood Eats and Treats 60 105th Street Deer Park, WI 54007 Watch for signs!
Our gyro meat can be used for more than just sandwiches!
1 – pack of Gyro meat – (order our Cylon Rolling Acres gyro here)
8-10 cups of greens or lettuce mix
1 jar of black olives
½ of a white onion, sliced
1 cup of feta cheese
1 – tomato, sliced
Flat or pita bread (flat bread/ naan recipe here)
Just want gyros? No problem! Find our recipe here
Order your goat meat from our Online Farm Store. For more goat meat recipes, cooking tips, promotions, and to know when goat meat is available, sign up for our Friends + Family email list here.
A BIG thank you again to Lakewinds Food Co-op, last season we were honored to be a recipient of its annual grant program. The grant helped fund the purchase of a refrigerated trailer for our farm, making it easier for us to transport meat from our butcher back to our walk-in freezer on the farm. The video highlights the grant recipients, including our farm.
Here's a run through of what's in my kidding kit and other supplies I have on hand so I am ready for when baby goats arrive on the farm.
I own and manage Cylon Rolling Acres in northwestern Wisconsin. On my farm I raise Boer - Kiko meat goats on pasture.
Cylon (pronounced Si-lon) is the name of our township in St. Croix County, Wisconsin. Sorry fans, our farm is not named after the robots of Battlestar Galactica.