Bethel’s Meyers Farm shuts down market, focuses on internet sales

Meyers Farm in Bethel, Alaska (Photo credit Daysha Eaton / KYUK)

Bethel shoppers might have seen a Facebook post this past weekend that brought some sad news: Meyers Farm has shut down its market on Ptarmigan Street. Tim Meyers says that the priorities have changed at Meyers Farm.

“The wife really wants to retire, but I don’t want to stop growing,” Meyers said.

Lisa Meyers was the only one helping him run the small store on Ptarmigan Street after his daughter and son-in-law moved to Anchorage. It was too much.

“It’s been 10 years, and we’re just going to be selling produce online now,” Meyers said.

Meyers says that they were not selling enough produce in their store, and switching to produce boxes could be one way to reduce food waste. Meyers began experimenting with those produce boxes last year. The Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation offered to cover the costs to ship those boxes to villages, where fresh produce is rare or grown at home. Then, Meyers started offering them to people in Bethel. Now the Alaska Food Bank has covered part of the cost of the produce and YKHC still pays for shipping. That makes a big difference.

“It would cost you $32 in Anchorage or $55 in the village, but we’re selling it and landing it for $15,” Meyers said.

People in Bethel actually have to pay $18 dollars because of sales tax. There are also options for a winter squash box that costs between $26 and $29, but there’s a catch.

“The only way you can do it is to go online,” Meyers said.

Meyers says that he’s not doing it any other way. On the website, Meyers Farm also has a fax form to download and send.

The last produce box will ship out of Bethel on Nov. 31.

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