Early in 2020 Chef Bryan Nowicki and his wife Lema decided to take their successful food truck business to the next level and open a charming little café in Cornville, Arizona. They had the vision, experience, and drive to make this a successful venture, but they were cash strapped. That’s when they turned to VVREO for support.
Now, despite COVID19 challenges, they are quickly becoming the popular new spot in the valley for “farm-to-table” dining. The Nowickis are in the process of expanding, and their future looks very bright.
Here VVREO and the Nowickis are sharing their story:
A few notes from our interview with Bryan:
VVREO: Describe your business.
Farm A Go-Go: “We are a small business that focuses on creating handcrafted foods and beverages. We have a farm to produce high quality fruits, vegetables, and animal products to be served on our menu. We have a small café in Cornville and also a food truck that gives us an advantage in catering and bringing our menu to communities and events outside of Cornville.”
VVREO: What did the VVREO loan allow you to accomplish for your business?
Farm A Go-Go: “The lending from VVREO allowed us to hire more employees—this has allowed us to branch out to work large-scale events, elegant parties and eventually help us build the café that now has consistent hours of operation. We were also able to purchase better signage to help bring in more customers with better visual marketing. We also were able to obtain a full liquor license, now we can offer our customers great food with a wide variety of beverage options as well.”
VVREO: How has your business changed since receiving the VVREO loan?
Farm A Go-Go: “The loan has allowed us to grow our clientele, we now have become an exciting venue for customers to visit with family and friends, and be a place that the community can be proud of.”
VVREO: What are you doing to remain successful in these challenging pandemic times?
Farm A Go-Go: “We have had to be very flexible to evolve our business, and willing to work long hours to keep our employees on payroll, and our business afloat. We quickly turned to curbside pick up for take-out food. We also started delivery and did not charge a minimum fee to our customers. We created food boxes that had staples such as bags of yeast, flour, fresh eggs, and vegetables from our farm, house-baked breads, and our cured meats. We ran a promotion for Easter dinner deliveries; families were able to order a classic Easter meal with sides and desserts to celebrate the holiday. We were also inspired to work with the L.I.S.A. (Low Income Student Aid) Program to deliver a free food box and a catered meal weekly to a family in need. We have always had a rigorous cleaning schedule to ensure everyone’s safety while we continue to serve our quality food and beverages.“
The Verde Valley Regional Economic Organization continues to support businesses in our community. If you are seeking to establish a business, expand an existing one, attract more customers, and retain the ones you have, there are abundant resources available to you through VVREO. For example, as a financial resource, VVREO is able to provide small business loans where conventional financing has been denied.