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Nostalgia fueling the future at Farm Stores

February 18, 2016

Farm Stores Bringing Nostalgic Drive-Thru Model Into 21St Century
While retaining its 60-year-old reputation of quality and convenience, Farm
Stores is introducing advancements to bring the iconic brand into the future.
Megan Ferringer
02/18/2016

Many adults who grew up in South Florida can share stories about their local Farm Stores. After all, for many families, this nostalgic chain of drive-thru grocery stores was the closest and most convenient spot to pick up everyday groceries like milk, eggs, and bread.

Today, those stores, identifiable by their iconic cow, are still around. A lot might have changed over the past 60 years, but a lot remains the same, too—Farm Stores is still a beloved stop for families in need of a quick afternoon treat or freshly-baked baguettes to bring home for dinner.

Farms Stores is a hybrid of your neighborhood grocery store, bakery and quick-service
restaurant, providing busy families with a unique shopping experience where they can purchase fresh products without ever having to leave their car. From popular grocery brands and household items—including proprietary Farm Stores products—to prepared foods and freshly baked goods, Farm Stores gives consumers the ability to save time by providing a fast way to buy groceries. Today, there are more than 80 locations throughout Florida.

“For nearly 60 years, multiple generations of customers have relied on the convenience of shopping for milk, bread, eggs, bananas and other quick-trip items from our stores without having to get out of the car,” said Farm Stores CEO Carlos Bared, who has been with the brand since 1999. “The Farm Stores concept has long defined its own category by offering an innovative, premium shopping experience for the family on the go without sacrificing quality or product offering.”

In 2014, recognizing the uniqueness of the Farm Stores model, Bared, and his brother,
Maurice, who serves as the brand’s chief operating officer, decided to introduce the concept to an even wider audience through franchising. But in order to do so, Carlos and Maurice realized it was time to implement a few new and enhanced elements to better cater to the evolving modern family. That started with introducing better technology into Farm Stores’ day-to-day operating systems—a mobile app was the first thing to come to mind.

“We’ve always catered to the busy, working moms, and we realized there was a way to make our convenient concept even more convenient. What if we introduced an online shopping experience—with real-time inventory and pricing on a location by location basis—so that these on-the-go families can save even more time by pre-ordering their items on their phones,” Carlos Bared said. “We realize how precious time is as lives get more and more hectic. A mobile app enables customers to tap into their closest location, so that by the time they drive up to the window, Farm Stores has their order expedited and ready to go. They can get out and get on with their lives in a matter of minutes.”

Farm Stores has worked to enhance its product line, too. In addition to stocking their stores with farm-to-shelf staples like dairy, fruits and vegetables, the brand has introduced drive-thru deli items usually found at supermarkets. This includes everything from ready-to-eat soups and salads to take-home rotisserie chicken and hearty meatloaf.

According to Carlos Bared, this has introduced the brand to an untapped daypart—meaning an entirely new revenue stream. The brand has also enhanced its production process, which includes state-of-the-art ovens that make the baking of their famed baguettes (the brand’s No. 1 product, according to Carlos Bared) quicker and more efficient than ever before.

But Carlos Bared assures that the things that have long made Farm Stores great will always remain the same—fresh, quality food that families can count on. “Whether you grew up visiting our iconic drive-thru stores, or if you’re new to the experience altogether, people know that Farm Stores is a brand that’s synonymous with fast and fresh,” said Bared. “As our customers’ needs continue to evolve, so too will we. Fresh food will always be at the forefront—and we guarantee that we will always strive to make sure customers are getting those quality products with the kind of efficiency they deserve.”

With an initial franchise fee of $25,000, new Farm Stores operators can expect a total
investment to range from $245,800 to $540,000, which includes everything from building costs to onsite training and support. According to Carlos, the brand is looking to further expand throughout Florida while also extending into select suburban markets across the country. Franchisees will benefit from a wide range of real estate options, including both new construction and acquisition of existing assets. In order to fuel franchise development, the company is seeking single- and multi-unit operators, and area developers with business management and retail experience.

The Friendliest Staff

"The staff is always friendly and the there seems to be an endless supply of quality products."

– Kenia Alfonso Pereze, Customer