Sandhill Honey Expanding From the Hive to the Home
Sandhills Honey Bottling Co, LLC, located near Anselmo, Nebraska, is a small family operation that started out as a hobby, then grew into a business officially opening in 2008 as a fully licensed honey processing, bottling and packing, and kitchen facility. The business was growing to meet the honey demand from local stores, as prior to that, local honey was not sold in stores in their area. They used their own honey, as well as additional honey they purchased from other local beekeepers, to process and bottle the honey, and primarily selling at the grocery stores in their region.
Increasing the quantity of honey bottled and sold in Nebraska was a goal of Sandhills Honey Bottling Co, LLC. With their current facility, they had the potential to increase production from 30 cases a month to 300 cases a month with the current honey produced in the region. With this goal in mind, they applied for and received a Value Added Producer Grant in 2016 for $49,500 in working capital funds to assist with the additional marketing costs, supplies (such as boxes and plastic containers), additional honey from local producers, salary for additional employees, and mileage for deliveries. The grant also required matching funds, which was provided via cash, their raw honey, and in-kind provided by themselves and consultants that were assisting with the website and accounting.
As a result of the grant, Sandhills Honey Bottling Co, LLC has added 10 new stores to their distribution list, and are making regular deliveries to these stores (more than 60 stores at present). Two part-time jobs were created, with those employees assisting with the bottling of the honey and deliveries to the stores throughout Nebraska. They have also been able to expand to new farmers markets outside of their county to help market the honey to individual customers. An on-site store was opened that offers many different products for customers to buy directly. Customers now have the capability to purchase products on-line. In 2015, Sandhills Honey Bottling Co, LLC distributed between 1,000 and 2,000 pounds of bottled honey, and in 2016 they processed and distributed over 24,500 pounds of bottled honey. The Value Added Producer Grant program has helped them reach their business goals, as well as create more income for their small family operation.
||Obligation Amount||$49,500||Date of Obligation||September 2016||Congressional District||Smith 03||Senator's Last Names||Fischer and Sasse|