Congresswoman Suzan DelBene of Washington's 1st Congressional District visited the Crowd Cow headquarters in downtown Seattle last week as part of Startup Week. During the visit, Rep. DelBene received a tour of our office, a tasting of craft beef samples, and a great discussion with members of the Crowd Cow team, including co-founder Joe Heitzeberg.
Members of the team met the Congresswoman in our "Wagyu" conference room to share the Crowd Cow mission and emphasize how we're bringing people together with high quality craft meats. (Yes, all the conference rooms at Crowd Cow HQ are named after breeds of cattle and their beef.) We want to help people discover and access the highest quality craft beef and meats, and to bring people together — farmers and consumers, families and friends. Accomplishing this mission is only possible with the help of people truly interested in a variety of high quality craft meats with amazing flavors. Even with her busy schedule, Representative DelBene chose to visit the leaders of the craft meat movement.
Rep. DelBene asked the question that started it all: why beef (and ultimately craft meat more broadly)? Beef is better when it comes from one cow on a small, well-managed farm, but it's difficult to find farms online and many ranchers don't take their meat to farmer's markets. Enter Crowd Cow, the opportunity to create a brand new supply chain and change part of the food system. People don't want to think about mass production, like that of the industrial beef industry, but Crowd Cow offers an alternative to big beef with incredible varieties of craft meats from independent producers.
We shared how technology helps tell the farm's story, bringing customers closer to to their food and the farmers who raise it. Magnolia Cattle Company is located in Washington's 1st Congressional District, represented by the Congresswoman. The farm is across from a local high school and surrounded by suburbia, all the while raising fantastic fullblood Wagyu. Independent farms like Magnolia Cattle Co. exist across the country and around the world so finding them demonstrates the grassroots nature at the heart of Crowd Cow.
We discussed Crowd Cow's vision for the future (sorry, no spoilers!) and how laws around food safety impact our business model. We talked about how craft meats are the centerpiece of a meal and their connection to other craft products (like beer and salts!). The biggest step forward for us is to help customers believe that we can build a new supply chain. Sharing the high quality of independent producers is the only way to keep small-scale producers from resorting to the industrial beef cycle.
After the roundtable discussion, we offered the Congresswoman and her team a sampling of a mouthwatering ribeye pulled off the grill just moments before tasting. Just a touch of char with juices running across the plate, this steak was divine.
Thank you for choosing to visit Crowd Cow HQ for Startup Week, Representative DelBene!