Another Growing Tradition
BALDWIN Co., Ala. (WBRC) - For most of us, thoughts of Baldwin County at this time of year turn to the Gulf Beaches. But for five generations, summer has meant a season of another sort at Woerner Farms. It’s a story that’s keeps growing.
“I was not coming back to the family business, and I did exactly what I said I was not going to do,” says Christian Woerner McGinnis. So, I’m the Fifth Generation. My family’s been farming for over 100 years. We ran a bunch of produce crops and then got into turf grass in the mid-seventies. My grandma Woerner, Lily, realized that the farm was out in more of the rural area and the customers were in the city. So, she said. ‘You know guys? Y’all go do the farming. You’re doing a great job but I’m going to go meet the customer where they are. ' So, she started our first ever garden center in Pensacola.”
Fast forward a few decades and like Grandma Lily, Christina Woerner Mcinnis, now fully involved in what she said she’d never do, saw a new need, and found a way to meet it.
“Dad asked me one day. He said, ‘Go over to the garden center and listen to our customers. Do a little audit. Tell me what you hear.’ I came back and reported back to him. I said, ‘Everyone’s having a problem with their lawn or garden and they’re coming to us, asking for a solution.’”
Christina says it was the beginning of another side of the family business. “I said, ‘Dad, I’m going to develop a really easy soil test and that turned into a whole different side of our business.’“
“So, we developed Soil Kit and that is now an affiliate company which is called Agri-Corp. We’ve merged the stubborn, hard-headed farmer and all that he or she knows from the farm into software solutions that the consumer can understand. Think about it. The Extension Agent and the lab are only open certain hours. We make this test and the answers accessible 24-7. Free shipping online. You go to Soil Kit. You’re able to buy this on-line. It delivers right to your mailbox.”
Regardless of her original intentions, through all kinds of weather, including the occasional hurricane, Christina has literally kept growing the family business, “I got here today by doing exactly what I said I was not going to do. I came back to the family business.”
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