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Teen Built Her Own Goat Milk Business
Though she’s still a teenager, college sophomore Abby Shuck manages a thriving soap and lotion business while going to school, thanks to her small herd of dairy goats.
    Shuck’s love for goats began at age 12 when her pap bought her a young Alpine goat as a gift for helping out on the family farm. Several years into goat ownership, she decided to build up a herd to breed and show. This left her with a surplus of milk and no obvious way to keep it from going to waste. Her solution? She created her own goat milk lotion.
    Shuck and her mom spent several weeks crafting a skin-nourishing lotion recipe and watched as happy customers spread the word about her products. She has since expanded the business to include a variety of personal care products, including soap, lip balm, bath bombs, bath salts, and more.
    “Right now, we’re making products 1 to 2 times per week to keep up with demand, especially during busy holiday seasons,” says Shuck.
    To date, Shuck gets all the goat milk she needs from her own herd. “We milk from early March to late December/early January, and the excess milk we do not use immediately is frozen,” she explains. “The extra frozen milk helps us continue production even while the does are on their dry period.”
    A busy schedule means that Shuck relies on family help to keep the business afloat. “Being a full-time college student makes it difficult for me to be home on weekdays. My mom and dad help me throughout the week, especially with pulling orders off our shelves and getting them shipped out. I travel from Delaware Valley University to my hometown nearly every weekend to work on the business,” she says. “When I’m home for summer and winter break, I spend nearly all my free time stocking up products for when I am away at college in the fall and spring.”
    Looking forward, Shuck plans to expand AHS Farms Goat Milk Products in various ways. This includes vending at larger events and craft shows, tweaking her website, and potentially establishing a permanent retail location. “And of course, I’m continuing to find ways to better my products, both with cosmetic look and quality.”
    For other young entrepreneurs, Shuck offers this advice. “It’s quite cliché but completely honest…don’t give up! With any business, there are going to be bumps in the road. Take a deep breath, assess the situation, and find a way to overcome the obstacles. Move forward and use past experiences to better yourself in the future.”
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, AHS Farms Goat Milk Products, Southwestern Penn. (ahsfarmsproducts@gmail.com, www.ahsfarmsgoatmilkproducts.com).

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2023 - Volume #47, Issue #1