My wife and I toot the local economy self-sufficiency horn every chance we get. Instead of casting our lot with big corporate service industries who extract our labor and leave us with nothing but meager paychecks and a smaller entrepreneurial class (yes, I'm talkin' to you, call-center boosters), we should focus on promoting small businesses that produce goods and services that they sell to their neighbors right here in South Dakota.
Mitch McKie of Spearfish is doing something like that. His company, Dan Diego Tortillas, makes tortillas for an expanding market of 60+ stores and restaurants. He tells KELO that he sells only to independent "mom-and-pop" operations. He cooperates with other small business owners to share ideas and promote the rural communities where his product sells. And for now, he's keeping his sales radius to 300 miles.
The business model must be working: In business now for less than two years, McKie is buying new equipment to double his production capacity. He's also been recognized as a Dakota Rising Fellow by the South Dakota Rural Enterprise Institute.
Keep up the good work, Mitch... and keep it local!
Another score for local economy: Robbinsdale Radical's brother Evan runs the Blue Heron Bakery in Olympia, Washington. He's just made a switch to more locally produced flour to get away from a business model that relies on the big carbon footprint of long-distance transportation. I'd order some bread from Evan to celebrate... but that would defeat the point, wouldn't it? :-)
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